June 6, 2015

How to: Frost Your Windows (for Privacy)

Last weekend I posted a picture of our (shiny, spectacular and NOT hunter green) front door and, not that I am biased or anything, but I think it looks great! What you can't see from the photo though, is that I also frosted the windows beside the door for privacy. Up until now (aka the whole last year) you can very clearly see into the house from the street - particularly when it's dark out, but during the day as well. Normally this isn't a problem, but sometimes without thinking, when I'm getting ready in the morning I will walk to the kitchen to make coffee in a sort of, half-dressed manner. Nothing rated "R" by any means, but enough that I don't think I want my neighbors, their kids, or their dogs checking me out.

I'm not a big fan of the sidelight curtains that often go in this space - to me their presence just means there is something extra to wash or dust. On that note, I also love the extra light that comes into the entry during the day, but obviously I needed to do something. So I decided, after a bit of research - a total of 5 minutes on Pinterest - to use Rust-Oleum Sea Frosted Glass spray. If Rust-Oleum isn't your favorite, there are definitely other brands out there. In fact, I know that Krylon makes one, but I had heard and read good things about Rust-Oleum's spray, so I went for it. I only needed the spray, a little patience, a stencil and some blue tape, and I successfully privatized my windows.

Disclaimer: I don't really have "steps" for this because it was really two steps, over and over. Apply stencil, spray three coats, waiting 30 seconds between each. Then do it again by lining up the stencil with the previous section, spray three coats as before, and so on. My only word of caution is to be cautious of over-spraying.

I picked up this Moroccan Tile Stencil stencil from Michael's and decided that it would work for my purpose. Ideally, this process is much, much easier if you choose a stencil that has a sticky backing, but I finagled the blue tape on the very edges of the windowsill to keep the stencil from sliding.

The good news about this spray is that, if you really screw up, some mineral spirits and elbow grease can get it off. Naturally, this happened to me. I over-sprayed my stencil too far, and the result was that the clear space, left by the outline of the stencil, ended up fogging and the shapes sort of melted together. My short cut fix included mineral spirits to clean up the edges with a q-tip but that just made it worse. So I wiped the whole window down with some mineral spirits and used a razor to scrap the spray off and started over.

But ultimately it ended up working perfectly! You'd really have to make an effort to peek through the cracks to see inside. Thirty minutes and $10 worth of materials, and my window problem is now artfully taken care of! Voila!


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