Image Transfer on Glass

Yesterday I showed you my new twine dispenser with an antique graphic on it, and I promised that today I would share how to add an image transfer on glass.  You’ll never throw an empty food jar away again, once you see how easy it is to do!

Although the process is similar to doing a regular image transfer, there is no transfer medium used, and the image isn’t permanent, so it’s also like putting a removable decal on glass.

Let’s get started!

Packing tape image transfer on glass |

Supplies needed:

1) glass jar or other glass object

**note – if you use clear glass, the image will show up better if you put something white inside it, like white candles, soap, buttons, or cotton balls.  If you use a white glass object (like milk glass), the image will show up perfectly

2) shipping tape – I used this 3″ wide tape.

3) copy of the image you want to transfer


1.  Make a copy of the image you want to transfer.  Make sure your printed image fits within the width of your tape.  Do not reverse the image when you print it.  It makes sense to put multiple images on one page, and you’ll be able to quickly prepare enough for several jars at one time.

All of the images I used for this tutorial can be found HERE.

2.  Stick the shipping tape over the image, being careful not to get an bubbles or crinkles in the tape.  Use a credit card to smooth the tape down completely.

Packing tape image transfer on glass |

3)  Cut out the image, trimming as closely around it as possible.

Packing tape image transfer decals on glass |

4.  Wet the paper side with water, and gently rub the paper off of the tape with your fingers.

Packing tape image transfer on glass |

5)  Once you have all the paper residue off the tape, blow dry the tape for a few seconds to dry it off.  The heat also helps make the tape a bit stickier.

Your decal will look like this – totally transparent.

Shipping tape image transfer on glass |

6).  Position it on the glass and smooth into place, then step back and pat yourself on the back!  You just kept a glass jar out of the landfill, and made something useful and pretty at the same time!

Shipping tape image transfer on glass |

I painted the lid on this jar, and used E6000 to glue a knob on top, just to make it look a little fancier.

How to image transfer on glass |

These images are not dishwasher safe, and should only be cleaned gently with a cloth.

Unfortunately, this method only works with laser jet copies (toner ink) – not inkjet copies.

I finally got tired of running to the print shop to buy laser copies for my projects, so I bought a new laser printer, and I’m so glad I did.  Not only was I wasting a lot of money on gas, but I always bought multiple copies of every image, just in case I messed one up, so I paid for bunches of copies that I didn’t end up using.  The price of color laser printers has really come down, so it was affordable.  I bought a Samsung Xpress color printer, which was one of the lowest-priced ones I found.  I’ve had it for 2 months now, and love it!

signature pin

Packing tape image transfer on glass |

Find more Easy DIY Projects HERE.

easy DIY projects

signature fountain pen

Sharing this week at Funky Junk, My Repurposed Life and TT&J

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  1. BRILLIANT! What a genius idea. Thanks for the tip!!

  2. Julie Chase says

    Michigan state is playing tomorrow, my hubby will be coaching (yelling) from the living room couch and I will be doing this

  3. Thank many projects to do

  4. What a clever idea Angie! Thanks for sharing. 🙂 Julie

  5. I love this project! I knew I was saving jars for some reason. Have a great day.

  6. Cute! I haven’t seen this type transfer before. Thanks for the instructions!

  7. I’ve been wanting to do this for ages. I get tired of running off to get laser copies made and just end of dropping the whole idea:-( I need to get a laser printer.

  8. This is really fantastic…I love your little cotton ball dispenser, in particular…that is a really lovely graphic! And goodness knows, we wind up with a ton of glass jars around here…all I need now is a laser printer! Samsung is a good name…I find you can’t really go wrong with them…I will check out the printer…thank you!

  9. What Fun!!!
    Thanks so much for sharing!

  10. What a timely post! My husband literally just dropped and broke a vintage jar we had in the bathroom for holding q-tips. He’s vacuuming it up right now! With your idea I can turn any jar into a vintage-looking one. Thanks for the tutorial!

  11. Not only do I want a Silhouette, now I want a laser printer! Love this idea, and I am always saving jars!

  12. i wonder if Mod Podge woulD market it more durable?

  13. Thanks for the tip Angie, now I want a laser printer, lol.
    Have a great day.

  14. This is a wonderful project. I haven’t tried many transfers, but I believe this may be a winner for me. I can’t wait to give this a try.

  15. This is neat, and very pretty! I was wondering how to do transfers. I have two printers I’m not sure if one is a laser printer or not. Do you think this technique would work on wood too. I’m working on a wooden mail, pencils, organizer thingy for our counter, and was wanting to add one of your vintage graphics to the front of it. Thank you for sharing your technique!

  16. This is neat, and very pretty! I was wondering how to do transfers. I have two printers I’m not sure if one is a laser printer or not, I sure hope so. Do you think this technique would work on wood too. I’m working on a wooden mail, pencils, organizer thingy for our counter, and was wanting to add one of your vintage graphics to the front of it. Thank you for sharing your technique!

    • Linda, I think it would work fine, but you’d need to put a sealer over it to keep the image from coming off. Be sure to let me know if you try it!

      • Thank you Angie I will. I guess both of my printers are inkjet. I will have to see if I can take a copy to Office Depot and get a laser print. I’m anxious to finish it.
        I’m sorry for sending the double comment. It said error when sending, so I submitted again.

  17. This is really neat! I am pinning it!

  18. This is brilliant! I am always looking for new transfer methods. Thanks so much, Angie!

  19. I love this idea, Angie, and intend to try it. Now I need to go through my recycle bin to find some jars to use.

    • Paula, you’ll be hooked once it try it! Most people already have everything they need to do it (tape and glass jars). The only other thing is copies made from toner ink, which is cheap. Let me know if you try it!

  20. Hi…I read that these “glass images” are NOT waterproof??? Could you put a clear lacquer on it, spray or paint, to protect the images? Just a thought?? Have you tried it??
    These are GREAT!!! Thanks for sharing!!!

    • Paulette, the only reason I say they aren’t waterproof, is because it’s just tape, which could come off if it gets too wet. Yes, a sealer would make them more durable!

  21. I cannot believe I took so long to do this!! I already have a laser printer, so I really had no excuse. I did it with sugar skull images–both black&white AND color. It came out awesome! I stuck them to a little square pot I have and so far they are sticking perfectly! Oh man, now I want to make a million things!!

    Since you now have a laser printer, you should think about getting a wood burning tool so that you can transfer images onto wood and fabric. I started doing that and it is really cool. You can do images larger than the 3″ wide tape. Just make sure the tool has the flat circle piece–I am not sure if all of them come with it.

    Thanks for the idea!

    • Susan – I actually have a wood burning tool, I just hardly ever get it out and use it! I’m not even sure where it is, but you’ve inspired me that I need to find it!

  22. Hi, I just discovered your site and LOVE your ideas! Is there a particular place I can go to, to find the wire hook/handle you used around the top of your jar? I love the look and would like to replicate it. Thanks!

    • Ruth, the jar I used already had that handle on it, but I know you can buy similar ones for mason jars at Hobby Lobby and probably other craft stores, or just twist wire around the mouth of the jar and attach another piece of wire on the sides for a handle.

  23. NANCY PENCE says

    Angie, I love your vintage image to glass transfer project! I can’t bring myself to throw away the beautiful jars that come from Yankee Candles! My mind is reeling, thinking of all the beautiful images I can put on them. But I need to ask . . . does the image need to be only black that transfers? Some of the images that I’ve seen scrolling down through your page have some color on them. Will they work as well? Awaiting your response before I begin! Thanks so much.

    • Nancy, I haven’t used a color image on clear glass, but you can experiment and easily take it off the jar if it doesn’t look good! That’s the nice thing about this project – you really can’t mess it up, because you can just take the image off and try it again!

  24. Hello 🙂 Your jars look fabulous!

    I have been doing transfer work for a very long time and just want to let you know that Epson inkjet printers use DuraBrite inks, which ARE waterproof, and I use them all the time for this type of work.

    So, if you have an Epson, give it a whirl.

    • Thanks for letting me know that Daffy! That’s great!

    • When you say waterproof does that mean you can wash your projects in the sink? Gently I’m assuming? Working on some things to sell and I don’t want the logos to rub off if someone needs to clean something.

      • Margeaux – the image transfers are NOT waterproof, unless you add an extra waterproof sealer over the top of them. Only a damp rag should be used to gently clean the glass with them on it.

        • Ok, so what would the benefit of using a waterproof ink be like Daffy just mentioned? Thank you for the information!

  25. How clever!

  26. Such a great project, who knew there was a diy difference to the inks used in printers !! Certainly not me, lol ( = Definitely pinning !! Thanks so much for sharing <3 Great tutorial by the way.

  27. I’m in a Crafters group at church and this is a wonderful idea for all those glass jars we hate to throw out. Thanks for the idea.

  28. Looks great but what did I miss? After peeling off the paper from the back of the print, how does it stick to the jar?????

    • Abby, the tape should still be sticky enough after you remove the paper to stick it on the jar. If it isn’t, you can use a light coat of spray adhesive, to stick it in place, or decoupage over the tape to adhere it.

  29. Brenda Ward says

    This is awesome you are talented and I would love to have a tiny bit of talent ! I can crochet in a long row don’t know how to do any connected thingy to have two rows just one lone one…..ugh

  30. This is awesome, I now know how I can label my pantry without having to hand write them. Thank you for sharing.

  31. I’ve been trying to do this for some shot glasses and when I stick the tape on the glass, you can see where I’ve cut. I used packing tape as well. Do any of you have suggestions about what I can do so that you can’t see the outline of where I cut?
    Thank you!

    • Blanca – I find it works best to put the packing tape on the paper, then cut as closely around the image as possible. Wet the paper, and make sure to rub it all off before adhering to the glass. I’m working on more transfers on glass today. Good luck with yours!

  32. Can you print on cardstock with your printer? Thanks so much! =)

  33. Kathy Rodgers says

    This method works like a charm! Took all of about 2 minutes to rub the wet paper off (if that), and it looks like a store-bought sticker. My mother in law recently passed, and she loved owls. I want to make something owl-themed for each of the immediate members of the family, and this type of image transfer will make it so much easier to do the decorated glass jars that I am planning. Thank you!! ~Kathy

  34. Wow! Super easy. I think I just found my new “thing”! Thank you for sharing.

  35. Hayley Thomas says

    I know this is an old post so I hope questions are still being answered. Once this is done, will it stick to paper or card stock rather than glass. While I think the glass method is AWESOME, I was thinking of doing something fun with my littles art club and I dont trust them with glass. I was thinking a mixed media lesson using this method.

  36. Does this work with colored images as well? Or just black and white? Thanks!

  37. Hi I think it’s great what you have done. I am wanting to give it ago for a gift but I’m struggling finding somewhere that does lazer jet prints. Do you know where that does them.

  38. I have tried different types of packing tape. I’ve tried soaking the tape in water after I had the image stuck to the tape and I just tried your suggestion using the same tape and I have not been able to get this to work. The whole piece of paper, image and all comes off every time. What am I doing wrong??

  39. brandon stapper says

    Very cool, thank you for sharing!


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