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August 16, 2009

Leaded Stained Glass & Architectural Salvage

**Delayed posting**: Stained Glass Sunday: I just realized that this did not post as scheduled, for some reason. So here it is:

My first leaded stained glass project is one I found in a salvage yard in Salt Lake City, all twisted and broken up. This is how it looks in my home today, encased in a custom wood frame by my dad. I love the fall color scheme. It's basically what inspired the name of my glass company and ebay store. I use a photograph of this item on my return address stamps, sort of the company logo.

I'm starting off with the "After" photos. These first two are taken where I live now, in Los Angeles. It hangs directly above my bed. I don't even need to close the curtains as the piece filters the light so I always wake to lovely hues.

The following pics were taken in my condo in Sandy, UT, the first place I ever owned, shortly after I finished this piece. For a few years it hung along the sliding glass door to the patio, and I'd see it whenever I looked toward the Oquirrh mountains.

The "Before" shots: Here's the piece as I found it in the salvage yard. One whole side edge of the piece was missing and had to be matched to the original glass along the top. In addition, a couple of the side brown panels were broken, and one of the yellow pieces. But amazingly, the center star was whole and in good condition.

I'm guessing this used to be in a door, though it wasn't encased in any kind of framing when I found it. I'm attracted to architectural salvage because I enjoy restoring the original integrity to a piece. It's not the window's fault that someone didn't care for it enough to maintain it lovingly but instead tossed it aside, in the process destroying half the pieces. Someone once loved this enough to take the time to craft it by hand, choosing each piece in conjunction with the next. So I try to give some of that back.

With Leaded glass, the whole piece has to come apart to be repaired, discarding the old came and replacing it with new, putting it together like a puzzle, then re-glazing to fill the space between the came and the glass.

I took a class to learn leading, and brought this in to work under the watchful eye of someone who knew what they were doing. In the end, I still managed to cut a little too much off of two center white pieces along one edge, so we had to use a wider came to fill that gap. Now I wish I'd at least done the same to both ends. But of course you always notice your own mistakes....

I think it came out pretty well overall. What do you think? Please leave me a comment on the blog.

1 comment:

  1. wow ellen....incredibly beautiful piece of work....the stained glass and the story behind it give me goosebumps....xoxo


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