A Beautiful and Easy to Make Paperweight

Originally posted 2016-07-13 08:00:25.

Etched River Rock Paperweight

One of my kiddos is getting ready to fly the coop… By “fly the coop”, I mean move out of state to follow his dreams of pursuing a degree and a career in the music industry as an audio engineer. I’m only sort of sad and more proud than anything! Anyway, before he leaves, I wanted to make him an etched river rock paperweight for his desk.

etched river rock paperweight

I used the symbol for Om, a mystic syllable considered to be the sigh of the universe. It holds a special meaning between the two of us. In every song he produces, he adds a “sigh” somewhere in the music. The sigh has become his signature mark. I wanted the symbol to remind him to continue to make his mark, so to speak, in everything he does!

etched river rock paperweight - Plain Rocks


  • A river rock with a large flat area (I bought mine at the hobby store)
  • Stencil or vinyl cut-out
  • Etching cream (<– affiliate link!)
  • Paint brush or wood craft stick

I started by cutting a vinyl stencil using my vinyl and paper cutter.

etched river rock paperweight - Stencil

Then, I applied the vinyl stencil to the rock, smoothing it down to make sure there were no wrinkles in the vinyl.

Next, I applied a thick coat of the etching cream with a wood craft stick and let is sit for an hour. An air eraser (a small sandblasting tool of sorts) can also be used.

etched river rock paperweight - Etching Cream

Finally, I rinsed off the etching cream and removed the stencil to reveal the symbol on the rock. It came out beautifully! Then, of course, I had to make an extra etched river rock paperweight for myself!

etched river rock paperweight - Second Rock

The paperweight was such an easy project. The symbol can be sentimental or whimsical (or even a monogram), and the paperweight will make the perfect gift! What symbol would you put on an etched river rock paperweight? Something fun, I’m sure!


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