Archive for March, 2014

My First Mosaic Using Stained Glass

Mosaic 1

I have just completed my first Mosaic and am very excited to share this with others, hope you like it. The project took me about a week because I kept changing my mind on what design I wanted. I found the mirror at a garage sale for 2 dollars and thought this will be the perfect mirror to try my first mosaic on. All of my glass was left over pieces from previous stained glass projects, what a way to use your scrap glass. The photo’s below show what the mirror looked like when I purchased it and in process through the final grouting,  please ignore the person in the mirror. All the glass and edges had to be masked so when I was ready to grout it wouldn’t get on the mirror.

Next was to draw the design on the frame, I am not a very good artist so that was a bit difficult, but I made it through with determination. Next I cut all the pieces and laid them in place. Looking pretty good by then so I carry on with the next step which was to start gluing all of them down (I used Glass Metal and More glue by Beacon adhesives) and applying the grout (Simple grout). The glue and grout both came from Home Depot premixed, which I like very much. Final drying time was 48 hours. This grout also comes in different colors, I chose the grey to match my decor.  The only thing left was to clean up the the entire piece with a sponge, clean all the edges and finally clean the glass. I am very happy with this first Mosaic project, I hope you also will enjoy viewing this piece. I will have to do some more of these little projects, to share with my family and friends.


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Bring Focus to your Stained Glass Projects

Patinas are used to color or darken solder lines. The most common patina colors are black and copper. Using patinas brings the focus on the glass and the design of your stained glass piece. This makes the glass colors, textures and designs of the stained glass piece the main focus. Below is one without patina and one after patina.

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Before you apply patinas, be sure all flux residues is removed. This can be done using a commercial flux remover or washing the stained glass piece with dish soap and baking soda.
Steps for Applying Patinas
Use a brush, rag or cotton ball to dab patina on to the zinc frame. Do not use a brushing action, as this can leave streaking or patchy coverage.
Next, apply patina to solder lines. Be sure all edges of solder lines have been covered.
Then, turn project over and repeat the process on that side.
Lastly, thoroughly rinse the patina off the stained glass piece. After it is completely dry, a minimum of 24hours, finishing compound can be applied.

Tips and techniques for Applying Patinas
Safety Always wear rubber gloves when applying patina.
If patina appears spotty, use super fine steel wool to clean the area, and then re-apply the patina.
To avoid oxidation, clean and apply patina immediately after project is soldered.

While patina will mask some inconsistencies in you solder lines, others will still be noticeable and take away from the professional look of your piece. With patience, practice and the correct tools and supplies, you can have professional solder lines.

Most patinas come in an 8 oz bottle. Avoid contaminating the liquid in the bottle by never re-dipping your applicator back into the bottle. Pour out a lid full and use this as your re-dip point.

You may experience different end results with the use of different brands of patinas. One common brand and easily found on store shelves and on line is Novacan. It is available in different formulas for different metals i.e. lead vs. zinc. As you experiment with different brands, you will notice that the more expensive ones do seem to shine more. Sometimes simple wax and compound can help this situation too.

Usually, if need be, patinas can be removed by using steel wool and some elbow grease. So don’t  fret if you think the application has made your art work look bad or if you just don’t  like the shiny lines dark.

I was not a fan of most patinas; however, I now know that by using this product, you do experience brilliant colorful glass. All attention is quickly turned from solder lines to the subject of your glass creation  the glass.

Another note of concern applies to patinas as well as other chemicals used in stained glass production. That is evaporation. Be sure and keep the lids tightly screwed on your bottles of supplies as some do seem to disappear into thin air. This will also avoid waste if tipped over accidentally.











We Love Magnolias – Our Largest Project

This post will be all about our largest project from beginning to installation and I hope you will enjoy.  The first thing was to measure the area which is the transom over our front door, well that was the easy part. Working this project would be difficult since all I had was a photo of the area and my template to go by since I was not staying there at the time. The next couple of photos will show you the area and the template.

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The trick would be to make this an exact fit to the measurements.  I have to say I was a little worried, since there was no way of verifying as you go since I was 2600 miles away , so I could only hope it would fit when we were finished. I had to piece this together to fit my template , since this pattern was for a 9  x  12 square piece there was a lot of cutting and arranging before I could even start cutting the glass. After all the arranging and cutting the pattern pieces it time to start cutting the glass which was very difficult, I broke so many pieces after all it was only my 3rd project and I was cutting them by hand and grinding, I thought I would never get through this so my husband and I decided to by a saw from Gryphon. That was the greatest idea we every had, as soon as the new saw came of course I had to learn how to use it, to make the perfect cuts. Didn’t take very long to learn how to do that correctly and this sure made my project run faster and smoother. I would recommend a saw to everyone who wants to work with glass. The next few photos will be the in process shots we took.

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Only thing left is to frame, and the patina and wax,  this is all the easy stuff . The next thing was to carry this home for Christmas to install, which is a long way to travel with a large piece of glass. We had to carry this in the back window of the car wrapped up really good for our 3 day trip home for the holidays. Long trip but we  made and I could not wait to install this, we were both really excited and hoping that it would fit. See the finishing photos below, I hope you enjoy because I know we did all the way through installation.

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The last two photos are from the outside at night oh how I love this window, my husband and I are so happy that it fit perfectly. This looks so nice installed  we are starting something new.  Hope you enjoyed this and will come back for the next post. Please share and like.