Dec 21

DIY Etched Dish Soap Bottle {Easy Last Minute Christmas Gift!}

Etched Dish Soap Bottle

Using an olive oil bottle as a dish soap dispenser is not a new concept for me -- I've had one for this purpose for years. But when I saw this cute etched dish soap bottle tutorial on Pinterest, it was one of those, "Why didn't I think of that?" moments.


I recently invested in a Silhouette Cameo, but frankly, I was a little intimidated by it, so it sat in its box on the floor of my office collecting dust. I figured this simple little etching project was the perfect opportunity to put its cutting abilities to the test.

And you know what? Using the Silhouette was waaaayyyyy easier than I expected, and I'm totally kicking myself for letting it sit for so long. I have tons of ideas for labeling and etching now -- and that's just the beginning.

Of course, you don't need a Silhouette Cameo to do this project. It will take slightly longer, but you could easily cut a stencil out of vinyl with an X-Acto knife by hand and achieve the same results.

Olive Oil Bottles

Supplies for making etched dish soap bottles:

  • olive oil bottles ($1.47 at Walmart -- score!)
  • adhesive-backed vinyl (Contact Paper would work too)
  • X-Acto Knife or Silhouette Cameo
  • glass etching cream
  • paint brush
  • your favorite dish soap

All in all, this is an extremely frugal project, especially when you can pick up the olive oil bottles at such an inexpensive price!

Dish Soap Bottle

First you'll need to create a stencil. I created mine in the Silhouette Studio using the Lucida Handwriting font, but as I mentioned, you could also print out your template, transfer it to some vinyl or Contact Paper, and then cut it out with an X-Acto knife.

Apply the stencil to the olive oil bottle and press out the bubbles. Yes, I realize I didn't get all of them out, but as long as you get the ones near the lettering where you'll apply the etching cream, you should be safe.

Etched Dish Soap Bottle DIY

Apply a thick coat of the glass etching cream to the stencil, taking care not to get it anywhere but on the letters, and let it sit.

Now this is where I need to add a little disclaimer to let you know that I am by no means well-versed in the finer points of glass etching. The cream that I purchased actually did not have any directions on the bottle. I looked them up online, and they stated to leave the etching cream on for no longer than 1 minute -- so of course, I left it on for 10. The glass was not nearly as etched as I would have liked.

So when I did the next couple of bottles, I applied the etching cream, and then I got busy and totally forgot about them. 45+ minutes later when I rinsed them off, they were perfect. So use your best judgment, but I don't see any harm in letting it sit longer than a minute.

Etched Dish Soap Bottle

That's pretty much it! I filled the bottle up with my favorite dish soap -- Mrs. Meyer's lavender dishwashing liquid.

While I was at Walmart, I also grabbed the cute red & white striped Mainstays dishtowels shown in the first image. A 3-pack of them was just $4.74! When paired with the etched dish soap bottles, it makes for a lovely personalized teacher's gift, coach's gift, hostess gift, etc., and even if you include the towels, you're well under $10 per gift. I made several to have on hand all in the same sitting!

Did you make or buy any handmade gifts this holiday season? I'd love to hear what projects you're working on!

Walmart Moms Disclosure

by Tara | 18 comments

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Maria December 21, 2012 at 9:25 am

I read somewhere that you can scrape the extra etching solution back into the bottle and use it over and over again. I willing to try that. Nice job on the bottles

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Tara December 21, 2012 at 9:32 am

Really? Good to know — thanks!

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Angie December 21, 2012 at 11:42 am

I love it!
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Sandy @ RE December 21, 2012 at 12:44 pm

Love this idea, Tara. Fun gift idea – thanks for sharing!
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Shaina December 21, 2012 at 12:50 pm

Love this. I need a Silhouette to make it easier, though. I would go nuts trying to X-acto my way to a perfect font.
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Cassie | Bake Your Day December 21, 2012 at 2:33 pm

I never imagined that this would be so easy…and I have always wondered how to do it myself. This is great!
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Cindy December 21, 2012 at 2:38 pm

Oh I love It!! It is just darling!

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Miss @ Miss in the Kitchen December 21, 2012 at 3:30 pm

That is the best idea, I love it!
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Paula - bell'alimento December 21, 2012 at 3:47 pm

Love this. Would have been perfect on my homemade infused olive oil bottles that I’m giving as gifts this year!
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Tara December 21, 2012 at 4:18 pm

Oh, that would be so beautiful! Maybe I’ll have to try that next year.

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Carol Hawkins December 21, 2012 at 5:21 pm

For those of us who are Exacto-challenged, I was thinking one could get stick-on letters, apply them, apply etching cream to the entire bottle, then remove the letters. This would give an etched finish with clear letters. Has anyone tried this technique?

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Tara December 21, 2012 at 5:39 pm

I haven’t tried it, but it certainly sounds like that would work, Carol!

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Jenn December 21, 2012 at 10:43 pm

That’s a great idea…I was thinking about that and to create the inverse based on my “challenge”. I’m thinking you could also try a silver or gold spray paint?

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Nancy December 21, 2012 at 10:30 pm

We could also apply the etching cream just around the immediate area of the wording, to save time and cream?

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Carrie December 25, 2012 at 7:29 pm

Now this is absolutely amazing! I love it! Very nice =)

Thanks for sharing! I’m actually going to bookmark this and try it out myself after the New Year.
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Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious December 27, 2012 at 1:10 pm

How cute! I really need to make this for myself :)
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JulieD January 10, 2013 at 10:32 am

Love this!! So neat, Tara!
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Julie @ The Family CEO January 26, 2013 at 11:42 am

I love this idea! I’m definitely saving it for future use. Thanks for sharing.
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