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The Home Straight - And How To Draw A Stained Glass Pattern

Now my first side light panel is out for 'sandwiching' (between tempered glass), I have my workspace cleared and thus, I can begin my final piece for the front door. I considered reusing the pattern I had drawn for the first sidelight, only reversing it, but, after thinking long and hard (longer than was necessary), I decided to draw a new one. I always wanted the front door to be an original, so I spent a couple of hours yesterday drawing a new stained glass pattern.

Preparing to draw the stained glass pattern

The first stage involved me tracing over the border of the old pattern, to ensure the new one was exactly the same size (since the template is with the glass sandwicher). I needed to include a 3/8" allowance for the edge material required to sandwich and seal the unit against moisture.

Stained glass pattern taking shape

Phase two involves drawing the pattern itself, including adding lines for joins, where glass would be too thin or difficult to cut and grind during construction. I then go over the pencil drawing with permanent marker and rub out the pencil lines. This makes the pattern easier to copy and less easy to rub away...

Stained glass pattern complete

The final stage involves adding 'grain' lines to the pattern pieces. Many glass, including the vecchio (type of glass) that I use for the background, has a 'grain' or direction. So, in order to keep the final look uniform, I mark the direction the glass needs to be cut in. Glass grain can also be used to add effect, such the horizontal banding on the tree trunks or veins in leaves. Additionally, the pieces are numbered. This is so that you know exactly where each piece will go when it's cut. I had the pattern copied yesterday and now am working on the actual execution. 7 pieces down and lots more to go.... After this? I want to do any design that has nothing to do with aspens...!

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