How to Hand Letter on Glass

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Learn how to hand letter on glass to make fun and festive signs

I love the look of hand lettering in store windows. Whenever I get the chance to wander downtown (which isn’t very often), I like to look at all the different styles of lettering on the storefront windows and chalkboard signs out front. It is a dream of mine to get paid to hand letter the window of a small business, but I had never tried the technique until recently. I made some fun hand lettered glass signs for my Christmas decor and am going to share my tips and tricks with you today on how to hand letter on glass.

hand letter on glass

First, you are going to need some supplies.

  • Picture frame
  • Copy of lettering design
  • Colored cardstock or vinyl
  • Sharpie paint marker
  • Paper towels/ qtips


Take the glass out of the picture frame and wipe it with a microfiber cloth to remove all dirt. Next, you’re going to either design your lettering in a program like Photoshop or Illustrator or you can just sketch it with pencil and paper. This is the design I created.

After you have finished your design, print it out, tape the paper to the back of the glass and place on a flat surface. If you happen to be hand lettering on a store window, you will want to do your lettering on the inside so it does not come into contact with rain. To do so, you will need to tape the paper to the outside of the window and letter backward of the inside of the window.

Using a Sharpie paint pen, trace over your lettering/design.  Do not use a chalk marker. You want to make sure to use a paint pen. The chalk marker can flake and smear after it dries because it acts just like chalk. The paint pen does not smear after it dries.


If you have thick letters, trace the outline first and then fill in the letters. If you make a mistake, you can wipe the marker off with a paper towel and water/Windex. Use a Q-tip for cleaning up detailed areas.

Once your design is dry, place the glass back in the frame and place a piece of colored card stock or vinyl beneath it. Reattach the frame and you have a custom hand lettered sign. Here is another sign I made for the holidays.

hand letter on glass



hand letter on glass


Hand Lettered Mug
Hand Lettering Tips


  1. When I letter with those paint pens I see dots at the beginning and/or end of strokes where the pen tip soaked up paint. Why doesn’t your hand lettering show those marks?

    1. Hi Michelle. I get those dots too and have to do my best to smooth them out by going back over them with the pen while they are wet. Hope this helps.

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