To decorate this year’s Thanksgiving table, I’ve hand painted some fun turkey glasses.
Dear hubby and I had been hoping to spend Thanksgiving with our adult sons in Philadelphia. Because of the horrible-no-good-very-bad-awful virus, our small gathering of seven is now
five down to four in Pittsburgh.
Regardless of the size, I think it’s still important to count our blessings, eat a fairly traditional meal (even if scaled back), and set a festive table. So, I decided to do a little craft therapy, by painting glasses with a pilgrim hat topped gobbler.
If you’re hopping over from Rebecca’s of Zucchini Sisters and her adorable DIY gnome garland, welcome! Seventeen talented bloggers are sharing their creative endeavors this month.
Here, I’ll show how to paint Thanksgiving turkey glasses in five easy steps, using my template method.
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Fun Holiday & Party Craft
All that’s really required to paint a wine stem or water goblet, is a steady hand and the ability to hold a paint brush.
You don’t have to be an artist or even artistic. Really!
With just a little help and direction, even a child can freehand paint or use a template to craft their own festive holiday glass.
I first painted wine glasses as tableware and favors for a My Favorite Things Party. It began with freehand painting large feathers as Peacock Party Favors, Gifts and Prizes.
Casual St. Patrick’s Day Table & DIY Shamrock Glasses were also painted freehand, but on Dollar Tree beer pilsners.
Painting glasses became a tradition for my annual theme parties. But to make 16 Breakfast at Tiffany theme champagne flutes, I first needed to figure out how to create a template of Holly Golightly’s silhouette.
See them in Terrific Tiffany Theme Party Favors and Gifts.
Later, the same template method was applied to paint four different Wonderland characters — on 20 glasses — from vintage imagery. They were part of 12 Alice in Wonderland Party Favor Ideas & Crafts.
It’s the same technique I’ll show you for painting Thanksgiving turkey glasses to decorate the table.
However, the turkey is a much simpler design, and easier to replicate.
DIY Thanksgiving Turkey Glasses
For more detailed instructions, pictures and tips using the template method, please also read DIY Hand Painted Glasses & Champagne Flutes.
- Clear glasses
- Rubbing alcohol
- Paper towels
- Cotton swabs
- Paint pen(s)
- Glass or multi-purpose acrylic paint(s)
- Paint brush(s)
You’ll also need a ruler, pencil, paper, black marker, and scissors.
Step 1: Prep Glasses
For supplies, I most often use cheap glassware from Dollar Tree. I especially like the large 16.25 ounce stem goblets, because they provide a good amount of surface area for painting. Made of thick clear glass, they also aren’t fragile to handle. Having a stem makes the glasses easy to hold too.
I run glasses through the dishwasher, but you can just wash them in soap and water. Once dry, wipe any outside surfaces you plan to paint with rubbing alcohol.
Step 2: Create Template
The method I used for the Thanksgiving turkey glasses was to first create a drawing or template. Using a specialty paint pen, that image is then traced onto the glass.
If you plan to freehand a design or image, just skip this step.
First, measure the surface area of the glass you intend to paint. For the Dollar Tree goblets, the area is about 2 1/2″ wide by 3 1/4″ tall. So, I measured out a block of the same dimensions on a piece of paper. Then I drew a turkey wearing a pilgrim hat within that block.
You could also trace an image from a holiday card, newspaper ad or magazine.
Next, I went over the pencil lines with a Sharpie marker. Cut the image block from the piece of paper. You will reuse the same template for each glass.
Step 3: Trace Image On Glass
If you set this up as a craft for children or grandchildren, you may want to have a few basic images for them to trace — like pumpkins. Or, just let them freehand paint fall leaves and whatever inspires them.
Use a small piece of tape to affix the image to the inside of the glass. It helps to insert tissues or paper towels into the glass. That helps to push the image smoothly against the curved edge.
Make sure no part of the painted image is too close to the top of the glass — where lips would touch when drinking beverages.
Step 4: Paint Image
You’ll need to use specialty paints designed for multi-surfaces and/or glass specifically. Some colors or designs may require multiple layers for desired coverage. But, be sure to allow two hours to dry between coats.
Keep rubbing alcohol, paper towels and cotton swabs handy to quickly remove mistakes before the paint dries.
Fortunately, I already had all the paints and pens I need in my craft stash. They were leftover from other glass painting projects, like these Hand Painted, Wedding Champagne Flutes. I painted the exotic birds to match my niece’s unique cake topper. That template was made on the computer by resizing and printing a photograph.
While painting, I find it helpful to lean the stemware on a roll of paper towels. It sorta works like a paint easel lol!
Eight Thanksgiving turkey glasses took me four sessions to paint over several days. Allow drying time between colors so you don’t smear the paint.
The amount of time it takes is dependent on the complexity of your design or image, and the number of colors and glasses.
If kids are doing the painting, just let ’em have some fun! Rubbing alcohol will remove smears and mistakes if done quickly. But, at only a buck per glass, it makes sense to have a couple extras.
Finally, I used a black paint pen to define the edges, and black and white pens for the eyes of the turkey. It’s not necessary, however, to outline the image as I did.
Inspired by the view of our large Bradford Pear tree, I also decided to freehand paint some simple fall leaves on the “foot” of the stemware.
Paint pens also work well for writing guest names or messages like; “Gobble, Gobble” or “Give Thanks” on the glass. They can take the place of wine charms for telling who’s glass is who’s.
Step 5: Cure Paint
It takes at least two hours for the paint to dry. At minimum, you need four days for the glasses to properly cure. But to be top rack, dishwasher safe, requires 21 days of air drying.
However, speed up the curing process by placing the Thanksgiving turkey glasses in a cold oven. Then bake at 350 degree for 30-60 minutes. Turn off the oven and let the glasses cool to room temperature. Check the directions on the paint label beforehand.
If the kids are painting glasses on Thanksgiving, you can get by with just a few hours to dry. Or, perhaps they could paint them on Wednesday as a craft activity to dry overnight?
As you can see, my painted glasses are nothing fancy. But I think they’ll look cute and festive on the table as water goblets.
You can apply the same template painting technique to create other holiday painted glasses too. For Christmas, there’s lots of imagery to choose from including; snowmen, Santa, elves, trees, wreaths, holly, and wrapped packages.
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This Too Will Pass
Painting the turkey glasses was a good craft activity to keep me busy while I continue to recuperate and heal after foot surgery. Two weeks ago, the second cast was removed and stitches came out (ouch!). Since then, I’ve been in this huge hard boot.
Doesn’t it look like something a Star Wars storm trooper would wear lol?
Time moves like molasses. Especially since I’m still non-weight bearing for another two to three weeks. Most awkward is trying to get comfortable and sleep with the darn boot on. At least now I can remove it to shower and do minor stretching twice a day. Real physical therapy begins in December. By New Years I hope to be in a shoe.
As I write this, despite everyone wearing masks and social distancing, our small Thanksgiving gathering is in doubt. Plan B (or is F?) will be here in Pittsburgh, minus one son and his puppy (sniff!). I’m trying not to get too worried, depressed or upset. Honestly, some days are harder than others.
I’m reminding myself of the hardships and sacrifices of many others. That includes reflecting on how my father-law was captured on Christmas, during the Battle of the Bulge. Dad told an interviewer (and us) that he’d lived a wonderful life. And that he’d live his entire life all over again if he could — both the good with the bad. Read his inspirational story in Salute to a WWII POW Veteran.
Wishing you all the best, as a we try to persevere through these trying times. Here’s to the return of happy, healthy and more prosperous days for all.
I regularly participate in: Metamorphous Monday, Turn About Tuesday, Centerpiece Wednesday, Whimsical Home Projects, In Link Party, Share Your Style, Tablescape Thursday, Thursday Favorite Things, Crafty Creators, Fabulous Friday, Saturday Sparks, Happiness is Homemade, and Love Your Creativity.
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Debbee, Your Thanksgivng turkey goblets are adorable and I can see why they are the perfect craft therapy. Who wouldn’t smile painting or sipping from one of your gobblers?! So sorry you’ll be missing your son this year. I had to chuckle at your ‘Star Wars Stormtrooper’ boot! Wishing you speedy healing and back to wearing a shoe soon. ♥
I was going stir crazy spending my days on the couch with my foot propped up or doing puzzles. Dear hubby did a DT run to get the glasses so I could craft. Since we had planned to go to my son’s in Philly, the glasses were meant to decorate the table. I’ll save ’em for next year I guess (sniff!). Concerned my PT might go virtual with new “voluntary stay at home order” as of last night. Anxious to get back on the move — at least around the house.
You are so talented and creative, Debbee! What a unique way to dress up a Thanksgiving table! Love the turkey glasses! It must be really exciting to see what you create each time for your family gatherings!
High praise coming from you Gail — thank you! My son doesn’t have seasonal tableware. So I had planned to bring the glasses and a fall leaf print tablecloth. Truth be told, I’d much rather be using paper plates and plastic cups if it meant we could still be with him on Thanksgiving as originally planned.
Debbee, the painted glasses look like pretty stained glass windows. Did you use an oil based pen for the outline? Yea, that boot looks uncomfortable but at least you can take it off for a while. And thanks for sharing your dad’s story. Sounds like he counted his blessings – a good lesson for us all! Hugs, RR
Thank you Rachelle. You can choose between translucent, satin and even metallic acrylic paints or pens. Pens might work well especially with young kids. Plus they dry really quick. Our last holiday with my father-in-law was a Thanksgiving at my son’s then condo in Philly. He was in a wheelchair with oxygen. But he was so happy that day; full of laughter and his corny jokes. We played a number of games. One was to figure out who was the spy. 5 rounds and he drew the spy card each time (!) and we never guessed it was him.
Your pilgrim hat gobblers are adorable Debbee! I am sad your gathering is in danger, especially after seeing the bash you had last year, I know you are disappointed…but with your foot in that Star Wars boot, you don’t need to be overdoing, and painting and crafting are at least activities you can enjoy! Keep up the good attitude, no matter what, we all have many blessings and thing to be thankful for!
Jenna, I was actually inspired by the glasses you had freehand painted for the Thanksgiving tablescape hop. I was sitting here in my boot and was in need of craft therapy. So thank you! Dear hubby has agreed to take on cooking our traditional meal, but scaled back. He’s even doing a regular turkey vs a breast or ordering takeout from a restaurant. I can help on a limited basis and will enjoy the company and assistance of my son’s sweet girlfriend. They will arrive shortly from NYC, after negative virus tests, and stay for several weeks. Hubby is setting up two work areas for their computers. My younger son will Zoom with us at the table, and for several game nights.
These are so adorable Debbee! I love the hand painted touch on the foot inspired by leaves from your garden! Have a Happy Thanksgiving 🙂
These turned out so cute. Your painting skills are beyond. While I would love to think I could do this I have a hard time just painting a simple circle. You could sell these! Thanks for being part of the hop. Happy Thanksgiving.
Aw Andrea, you give me too much credit. Tracing and filling in the colors isn’t hard. You’re a talented crafter and I have no doubt you could knock it out of the park!
I love this! You really got creative. Those glasses are going to be a hit on your table.
Well, I was badly in the need of some craft therapy, and my son needed more glasses to host Thanksgiving. Since I’ve painted stemware before, I had all but the DT glasses. Now, will only be using half of them this year unfortunately. But, I can always paint more for a much bigger celebration in 2021.
Debbee, what a festive addition to your Thanksgiving table! Happy Thanksgiving!
These are so great Debbee! I love them and they turned out great. Wonderful crafting with you.
I used to have some very cute snowman glasses. They were a gift. I finally gave them away because they mostly gathered dust— but they looked so pretty with milk in them! I think I would be afraid to cure the glass in the oven– but then I stick my pyrex in there so I guess that’s about the same thing, isn’t it!
The first glasses I was afraid to put in the oven. So, I air cured them. But, the shamrock pilsners went through the dishwasher several times after oven curing and they were just fine. Has to be top rack.
Crafting can certainly help to lift a person’s spirits and take our minds away from things that are worrisome in day-to-day life…the turkey goblets are such a festive item and I can see the technique works well for a variety of holiday occasions. You have inspired me to start thinking of ways to embellish inexpensive glasses and to have some fun! Do hope that you make steady progress to complete mobility and can retire your ‘Star Wars boot’ sooner than later. Enjoy Thanksgiving as we count our blessings…we know that things could be much tougher than they currently are as your father-in-law’s life illustrated. Always enjoy your posts and thank you for sharing!
Always enjoying hearing from you Alayne! Painting the glasses requires concentration and so was a good distraction. I’ve looked for years for vintage Scottie holiday glasses, but the ones on Etsy, eBay are too pricey. Maybe I’ll try my hand at making my own this year? I’m seeing light at the end of the tunnel regarding my foot, with the worst behind me. And, now we also have hope with vaccines to fight COVID. Thanks for continuing to follow along with me, and I wish you a safe and happy holiday.
Debbee, These turkey glasses are so cute and you did such an amazing job with them! How fun would it be to sit down to these at your Thanksgiving table! All of the other painted glasses are also SO cute! You really have a talent for painting them! I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Thanks Chloe, hoping the glasses will bring smiles to the fewer family members we will (unfortunately) be having at the table this year. They really aren’t hard if you allow enough time and use a template. Best wishes to you also!
Debbee, your turkey glasses and all of your other hand painted glasses are so unique and creative! You have a real talent for painting on glass. I really love the Breakfast at Tiffany’s glasses, too! What a wonderful favor for your guests to take home and a fond reminder of the event. I want to try my hand at painting some, too. Those Dollar Tree glasses are surprisingly good quality!
I’m sorry to hear you may not make it to Philly…I know you were looking forward to seeing your son and the puppy. This entire year has been one disappointment after another. But I’m glad to hear that your foot is healing. Thank goodness for crafts to keep yourself busy! Hopefully at this time next year, we’ll be vaccinated and spending time with our families and friends again.
I hope you have a nice Thanksgiving with your husband, son and his girlfriend. It will just be my husband, daughter, MIL and I this year. You are right that it helps to put things into perspective by thinking of the hardships that others have endured. We truly have a lot to be grateful for!
Glad you enjoyed the painted glasses Rebecca! Really appreciate you kind and supportive words in regard to my Thanksgiving and surgery situations. You are so sweet and thoughtful!
My eldest and his girl are enroute as I write this. They made appointments for rapid COVID tests yesterday, and were in/out in an hour. They are coming because ceiling repairs means they have to temp move out. A huge pipe burst on the 100 year building roof (they live in the penthouse). Yeah, 2020…! Ironically, our youngest (who doctors are 99% sure he has virus) took the DNA test last week — he might not get the results for another week due to demand! His symptoms are mild-moderate, but thankfully no respiratory issues. Mostly that awful fatigue. As much as will miss him for Thanksgiving (the first time in his entire life), I am grateful he appears to be OK.
Amazing ideas, Debbee, on the Thanksgiving glasses. These are so cute and a greater addition to a Thanksgiving table.
Debbie, these are such darlings! I love the idea of having hand painted glasses. We’d love for you to share your post with us at Meraki Link Party at https://doodlebuddies.net/2020/11/23/meraki-link-party-15/
Thank you for the invite Naush, I’ll check it out. Hope you give painting glasses a try.
Dee Dee, the glasses are so pretty and you are so talented. Happy to hear that your recovery is progressing. Hang in there and we will all get through this ordeal. Happy Thanksgiving.
these are adorable – have a great Thanksgiving!
Thanks so much Patti! Best wishes to you for a happy and healthy holiday.
Hi Debbee, just checking on you because I haven’t seen much of you online. BTW Cute glasses!
Hi ya Myrna, had a muted but nice Thanksgiving. Hope you did too? Spent time off blogging to “help” dear hubby pull off Thanksgiving that ended up here in Pittsburgh. And, to enjoy time with our eldest and his girl (who had to move out of their penthouse condo in NYC that was undergoing repairs to the roof and ceiling. Will be participating in next week’s Christmas tablescape hop though.
Your glasses are adorable and I’m glad you found something to keep your mind occupied while you’re healing. I hope each day is better – Thank you for sharing at Party In Your PJ’s!
Thanks Ann! Unfortunately, there were only 4 of us for Thanksgiving, but I feel blessed we were even able to have one of our sons and his darling girl. So, I’ll just save the other glasses for next year. And, if we have an even larger crowd, I’ll be delighted to paint more!
Debbee, Your flutes with the ultimate diva, are fabulous ! I would treasure it.
While this year has presented a huge amount of inconveniences – its also a time for us to count our blessings. Hope you have a safe and lovely week.
Congratulations Debbee. Your painted thanksgiving turkey glasses is one of our features today at https://doodlebuddies.net/2020/12/01/meraki-link-party-16/
Wow, that’s great, especially since I am brand new to your lovely party. Thanks to much Naush!
Debbee, I love these glasses. You never cease to amaze. Congratulations, you are being featured on Thursday Favorite Things Party. Hugs, Bev
Very much appreciate the feature Bev, especially on one of my very favorite linkup parties!
Debbee, I was happy to feature this post as it is SO CUTE!!! I love how you painted your turkey glassware!!! Anyway, I was really happy to feature your post. <3 Hope you are having a wonderful week leading up to Thanksgiving! Hope the terror (terrier!lol!!) is chewing less around the house. He'll get there! It's tough having a puppy. <3 Many hugs, Barb 🙂
Thanks again Barb for the feature! Whiskey will be 2 in December and is pretty well-behaved — except when he sees a squirrel or deer and then he goes craaazy! He even earned Canine Good Citizen, but he’s still a Scottish Terrier. Which means he’s holds himself in high esteem lol!