Unique artistic studio selling handmade products such as home décor, jewellery, gifts and more. Commissions undertaken.
Glass is such a beautiful medium to work with, the colours, reflections and what you can make with it is expansive. I enjoy experimentation with glass, which means some mornings I open the kiln and it's like Christmas, fortunately on rare occasions, it can be a ‘Nightmare before Christmas!’
What is Stained and Fused Glass?
Stained glass is when you stain glass with special inks, enamels and incorporate your paintings in a glass panel put together by using leaded came. You can also create a pattern without painting/staining to look like a particular item ie. Landscape, seascape etc.
Leading panels are designed first with a particular theme in mind. Your design is then created into what is called a cartoon and 3 copies made. One to build on, one to use for opalescent glass as you can’t see through it to cut and the third for cutting from. I tend to use 2 copies.
My “Lest We Forget” panel for Didcot Civic Hall was copperfoil and leaded window. I drew the design, approved by the Mayor. I then drew a workable cartoon so I could work out exactly how this was going to be cut, reinforced and built. The copperfoiled areas were cut, copperfoiled, and soldered so they could go in place when needed, like an already cut piece of glass. Lead came with rebar incorporated in them was used for the outside edges and the reinforced areas in the panel. I build from left to right building up to the top and then moving back to the next left until finished.
Once the panel is built and put together and secured, I then had to recheck all the joins and ensure all pieces fitted. I then soldered the joins. Turned the piece over and soldered. Turned it back over and cemented the piece to secure all the glass and stop any movement. Added whiting to aid drying out and turned the panel over to do the same on the back side. I left the panel for a few days and then cleaned and polished it, removing any excess lead cement. It is then left for a week to settle and dry thoroughly prior to installation.
Now if I did the same panel with fused glass, similar cartoon required as glass sheet would still be needed in order to cut out the glass to fit the location.
With fusing there are several firings, full fuse (smooth and flat), contour fuse (textured, but rounded), tact (as it looks cut up, not much change, but it would stick to another piece of glass).
My plan, and others may disagree and do it another way, would be to full fuse a base layer and then tack fuse the detail on top. Quite risky, but if you get your schedules right then it should be great!
I would make one base layer from two 3mm layers of tekta which would be full fused. Whist that was in the kiln for several days, I would cut out the poppies and the soldiers, helmets, letters etc and contour fuse them in my other kilns. When everything is ready I would add the detail to the base layer and fuse again incredibly slowly and this would be in the kiln for a week or so. Because the depth of the glass is more than 6mm as I have added the poppies etc, I would anneal the panel very conservatively for at least an 18mm piece of glass.
I will add photographs of the process when I get a minute. If you ever want to talk to me or ask questions, please don't hesitate to do so. I love what I do and wouldn't mind at all.