Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Making Gothic Stained Glass Windows

 I didn't get enough students at coop to hold  my Appreciation of Architecture class but making Gothic stained glass windows was one of the fun projects I had planned.

The stained glass windows are partly what makes Gothic cathedrals so breathtaking.

St. Denis Cathedral, France

I was on Pinterest getting lost in all the cool stuff and found these two posts about rainbows from the dilly-dali art blog.  This one is Rainbows Two Ways and this one is the directions for how to make the gelatin (the color in the above sample).  I thought this technique could be applied to making simulated stained glass.

You'll need to use the above links to make your 'glass'.  It takes several days to dry so this project does take some advance planning.  You'll also need clear contact paper and a black sharpie.

Cut out a piece of clear contact paper larger than your finished window plan.  I started with a 7" X 11" sheet.  Then on the back, meaning the non-sticky side of the clear paper, draw in your tracery.  Tracery is the stone/masonry framing that surrounds the glass.  In most Gothic windows, there's wider and thinner sections.  You can see in mine above, I put some in, didn't like it and changed it's position.  I intended to do another to show a nice finished sample for class but oh well.  I like this one in my window right by the kitchen table since it reminds me of my travels.

Once your tracery is drawn on, carefully peel back the paper backing and put your paper sticky side up on the table.  You'll see all your lines right through the paper.  Now you're ready to apply your 'glass'.  I was trying to use all the colors so I went with a rainbow theme (also see below, rainbows is what I was encouraging the boys to do).  If you're trying to be more accurate, look at some examples first.  You might be inspired by the blue windows of Chartres or the red of St. Chappelle (which I intended to mimic for my class sample).

When I was done, I stuck mine to the window.  You could also mount yours to black paperboard cut in a shape you like.  Mounting them on black paperboard gives a very Xmas ornament look so with the holidays coming, keep that in mind and you could take this project a lot of different directions.  It can't live on the window forever so I intended to take it down and frame it for this year's Christmas tree.

My stained glass window took about two hours while I was helping the Toads with their windows.  I did a post here about how the boys interpreted this project.  I presented it as window rainbows.  We did this project during the summer when 'school' was not in session so I wasn't trying to attach it to any historical theme.

If you use these directions to make stained glass, please share your work in the comments section for all to see.  Have fun!

For more Gothic inspired fun, you can find my Gothic architecture game on Currclick here:


Phyllis said...

This is a great activity! I will have to keep it in mind the next time we cover the Middle Ages. Thanks for linking up to All Things Beautiful's History and Geography Meme!

maggy, red ted art said...

Wow, these turned out so beautiful. Wonderful.

Thanks for sharing on Kids Get Crafty!


toady mama said...

Thanks ladies!

Amy said...

Sorry you were not able to do this with your co-op! I'm sure it would have been a great activity to see how everyone's were similar and different. Great project! I'm going to 'pin' it, hope that's ok! Thanks for linking up to Trivium Tuesdays!

Carrie said...

Oh, how fun!! I have always wanted to try stain glass windows. Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday!! Sorry I'm visiting/commenting so late!

Storefront Glass Installation Brooklyn said...

The ancient french murals are something that I pray for to be one day imitated as by other religions and sects. It certainly does have a certain magic charm to it. But overall on your end, very impressive work on the glass.

-Solomon Berkovitch

jmommymom said...

I've been browsing your art activities and they are wonderful. Art is an area we haven't spent much time on, but I love these activities and may have to try a few of them out.

Storefront Glass Installation Brooklyn said...

This is an outstanding guide on how to make faux stained glass! I love how simple and follow up easy it is.

-Solomon Berkovitch

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