Expressing Art with Stained Glass

Art is as old as civilization itself. Ever since man became aware of his own existence, he has always tried to express his feeling through art. There are many forms of art. Painting, music, crafts and literature–the genius of centuries are all art. Man has known glass since the past few thousand years. And so glass has been one of the media of his expression of beauty and art. Often we come across magnificent pieces of art made of glass. Windows and cut glass, lamps and household articles–all of these are the magic of stained glass.

The term “stained glass” can refer to two things. It may refer to the material that makes colored glass. It also refers to the art and craft of working with it to produce beautiful designs. Stained glass, as a material, refers to the glass that is given color using salts. These salts are infused into the molten glass during the manufacture process. Yellow color is often used to enhance the look of stained glass. Further, stained glass is painted to give a colorful appearance. Stained glass also refers to windows that have been painted and then annealed in a furnace to give a very beautiful appearance to the window.

Extreme artistic and engineering skills are needed to produce stained glass. Artistic skills are needed to create the design and engineering skills are required to mount the decorative piece in its place such that it sustains its own weight. Stained glass windows are not windows in the true sense of the word. The purpose of stained glass windows is not to admit light or allow the people inside to see outside. Rather, they are used to control light. Stained glass windows are often called “illuminated wall decorations”.

Stained glass windows may or may not be used to depict something. Many stained glass windows depict events that have been drawn from the Bible. They also represent history of literature, saints and patrons. Symbolic motifs are also depicted in some cases. Themes can be etched on stained glass windows. Stained glass windows are often customized for the location and occasion. For example, stained glass windows present in churches depict the life and teaching of Jesus Christ, those found in parliaments show shields of various constituencies in the country and those found in universities depict arts and sciences.

Stained glass has been one of the most creative ways of expressing art. In fact, many tourist places have become attractions only because of the stained glass windows. Stained glass will always take its place besides other arts like paintings and literature.

Easy Stained Glass Projects

There are many products that feature stained glass. However it is fun to create your own objects with stained glass. They will be unique and you will spend some time having fun and expressing your personality.

Stained glass mosaic.

Stained glass mosaics are stand alone art pieces. They can add charm to your home. In fact it is quite simple to do one by yourself. All you need is a pattern, stained glass chips and glass glue and grout.

Get a stained glass patterns book or search the internet to find the pattern for your mosaic. Transfer the pattern over the surface you will use for the mosaic. If you will use a round surface such as a vase you will need smaller stained glass chips. Than glue them over the surface.

Once all of the chips are glued apply the grout. If you need to color it add a bi of acrylic paint to reach the desired color. Fill all gasps with grout and let dry. The final step is to clean the ready mosaic with a soft cloth.

Stained glass mirror frame.

Crafting a stained glass mirror frame is similar to making a stained glass mosaic. You will need the same materials as well. The tricky part is in choosing a pattern suitable for a frame like project. You can make a full frame on the mirror edges or just enhance the corners.

If the mirror you will work on is on the wall you better take it down and place it on a flat surface. This will ease your work while applying the stained glass chips and gluing them over the mirror.

Follow the steps above and let dry for at least 24 hours before hanging the mirror on the wall again.

Stained glass lamp.

A side table lamp or a bed table lamp will look gorgeous if it is made of stained glass. Craft one yourself or revamp your old lamp in this famous tiffany style.

If you have an old bedside lamp remove the old shades and cut suitable glass pieces to replace them. Than glue colored glass pieces over the new glass shades in the desired pattern. It is better to larger pieces so that the grout is less allowing maximum light to pass through.

You can also craft a stained glass chandelier using stained glass pieces. Glue them over small glass pieces to create cute small patterns and hang them on the old glass pieces places. This will give new life to your own chandelier and add subtle luxury to your room.

There are much more easy projects you can do for yourself of as gifts for your loved ones. You can craft a stained glass jewellery box, a stained glass lunch box or even a stained glass dog bowl. Use your imagination and let your artistic side express itself.

Creating Stained Glass Objects is a Fun and Rewarding Craft / Hobby for the Creative Person

Seeing a stained glass window is a mesmerizing experience. The stained glass takes light and refracts it. The glass changes colors and reflects the light like magnificent jewels. The beauty of stained glass was at one time reserved for commercial construction. The high cost of hiring artist to produce the colorful and intricate windows was too expensive to incorporate in residential homes.

Stained glass windows that adorn churches are complex mosaics
of bits of colored glass illustrating familiar bible stories or the picture of the life of Jesus or saints. The subtle or brilliant play on light made the church environment seem more special and sacred.

Today stained glass is an affordable option for homeowners. There are several beautiful uses for stained glass products other than located in beautiful churches. Stained glass is now available in residential homes.

Stained glass in art class has become common for use in a myriad of home improvement projects. New homes are a showcase for stained glass with entry ways made alive with color and texture. Beveled glass and stained glass pictures depicting a variety of scenes from butterflies to sacred biblical themes adorn the doors and windows.

In the bath room stained glass filters harsh sunlight to create a tranquil and relaxing setting. In the dining area, your guest will be bathed with rich color. Stained glass is introduced to doors of kitchen cabinets. Wherever there is glass, a stained glass enthusiast sees opportunity.

The interest in stained glass objects exploded with the introduction of the Home Shopping Network. A whole new generation discovered the beauty of stained glass with tiffany-like lamps were introduced. Louis Comfort Tiffany popularized the use of stained glass. His name Is always linked with the American glass movement.

The most beautiful use of stained glass is the Tiffany Lamps. HSN offered replicas of the Tiffany-style lamp on its cable show. The overwhelming response to this lamp indicated that stained glass was again in vogue.

New technologies made the creation of stained glass objects more affordable to the masses. Individuals took classes at hobby and craft shops to learn the ancient art of glass. Some of these hobbyist became masters of the craft and applied the techniques to their own homes and other objects.

Many glass enthusiasts created stained glass objects as a source for creating secondary income. Stained glass items are sold at flea market, art and craft fairs. Creating stained glass objects
can become a fun and rewarding home based business for creative individuals to showcase their artistic.

Some home based glass artist do restoration and repair of stained glass. These artist also create customized designs for their client’s project. The tools and materials to create stained glass objects is readily available. The aesthetic quality of stained glass provides a ready market for unique items created from stained glass.

Whether the stained glass art is used on cabinets, furniture or a window, the affect is breath taking. Stained glass patterns mimic and recreate scenes from nature, the spectrum of colors, object and textures appeal to a wide variety of people. Stained glass inspires home decorating. There are few limits to the artistic expression using art glass.

The designs can be subtle or so dramatic that friends and family make audible sounds the first time they experience your masterpiece.