My First Stained Glass Experience

Before Christmas, my coworker asked the ladies at work if we wanted to do a stained glass class. She was the only one who had done it but thought we’d really enjoy the experience. So wrapped up for Christmas s was an invite to the class that wouldn’t occur until February.

The week before the class my coworker told us to plan what we wanted to make with only three pieces of glass. So my mind got to thinking. Could I make a mustache? Maybe in lime green! Then I thought well what if I need something thicker in the middle so it wouldn’t break? How about a donut? How would I make it look like a donut instead of a circle with a hole in the middle? A cupcake came to mind, or a popsicle. I printed a template so I was ready to go.

The night before our class on Super Bowl Sunday we got a dumping of snow and the snow continued into the morning but we all made it!

We practiced cutting glass with different cutters, had to draw our template, after some explanation of what you can and cannot do. Straight cuts are weak, there goes my popsicle idea. Tiny curves are a challenge. So long mustache. I decided I’d make the cupcake. Once I had my pattern drawn, and a drawer I am not, I had to create a copy. And cut out the second pattern so the shape could be traced on the glass.

Then on to find the perfect glass for my cupcake. I found a cool blue and a brown like a cupcake liner but something was missing. No lime green! Someone found a green and it was the PERFECT sized piece that I needed. It felt like it was coming together. Cutting glass is not easy when you’re trying to create an actual object. After I cut my three pieces I was mortified that they didn’t even touch! The instructor looked at it and said they looked great. I thought she was losing her mind! Only because I didn’t understand the next step. We grounded our pieces down on a grinder that has water in the bottom and a sponge to wet the grinder. I don’t know how else to describe it. With a couple tweaks by the instructor I had three pieces that fit together. If I could just remember how they went. That’s where the second pattern came into play.

We had to put the copper foil around the edges and smooth it out. We placed them together and started the soldering.

From paper template to finished product it was such a fun time! There were only a few moments when I had to hold my breath! I had a great time and look forward to doing it again some day!

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