Adventures in Dangerous Art
I'm learning the art (or is it a craft?) of stained glass. At this weblog, I record progress, note useful links, and document flesh wounds.


The Art League
Where I took a lead class and a 3D construction class.

Weisser Glass Studio
Where I buy supplies, and where I took a foil class.

Virginia Stained Glass Co.
Where I buy supplies if I happen to be in Springfield and if they happen to have what I want.

Great prices on supplies, a lively and helpful Glass Chat message board, and excellent Technical Tips on stained glass tools and techniques.

Glass Galleries Links List
A list of Glass Chat users who've uploaded photos of their work.

The StoreFinder: Stained Glass Store Front
Lots of articles. Tutorials
Even more articles. Particularly recommended: "Anatomy of a design" and "Wood frames."
Courtesy of Google Groups.

Nancy's Beginner Tips and Tricks
Scoring, breaking, soldering, finishing, and more.

Splinter Removal Tips

Syndicate this site
Someone out there is using XML for something... right?

Movable Type
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It's a glass cutter.
November 04, 2002: The Wright Stuff
Last night's update was hastily concluded, when I realized that my sweetie and I were about to be late for a ten p.m. showing of The Ring. While detailed analysis of movie viewings is beyond the scope, as they say, of this website, let me just say that I wished we'd caught a matinee instead... daylight, even of the pallid early-wintry variety we've had so much of lately, would have been a sweet comfort, upon emerging from the theater.

So I picked "Publish" from the Post Status dropdown before I discovered who had originated prismatic glass transoms: none other than Frank Lloyd Wright, with a patent on prismatic glass tiles in 1897. His architectural genius is broadly acknowledged, but his contributions to art-glass design (or whichever term you prefer: stained glass, leaded glass, whatever) are less widely known amongst the general populace. He was the originator of the geometric and severe prairie-style stained-glass design, and in fact the terms "prairie style stained glass" and "Frank Lloyd Wright stained glass" are sometimes used interchangeably in the casual lingo of online stained-glass chats. Prairie glass transoms would be quite nearly period-perfect for our little 20's bungalow (as Don keeps reminding me)... unfortunately, it's not much to my taste.

It's amazing, really, the blend of style and function that Frank Lloyd Wright brought to his work, particularly to something so seemingly simple as windows. To integrate art-glass windows into a building's design as a seamless part of its overall style, and to invent new ways to build windows so as to maximize the light taken for granted to shine through them: it seems to me that the man's fame was well-earned, indeed.

Posted by Michelle on November 04, 2002 03:40 PM

Next time yer in NY, we'll have to take you guys to the Met to see some of Frank's windows :-)

(Hope your flesh windows are healing well, btw.)

Posted by: Kim on November 4, 2002 08:31 PM

Have you ever been out to the Pope-Leighey House in Mount Vernon? I went on a tour with my hosts when I was visiting your fine city, and it was lovely. Small, but lovely.

I don't remember seeing any stained glass transoms, though.

Posted by: Adrith on November 5, 2002 08:50 AM

The Met is wonderful, but there's so much to take in, it's like aesthetic sensory overload. The stained glass "garden" is really beautiful, but I think I missed the FLW works last time I was there. They have a lot of Tiffany glass though and I recall spending a lot of time ogling the triptychs.

Posted by: Cristen on November 5, 2002 10:23 AM

Rrrr. Umm, so, that really fast update I did the other night also involved a tweak to my stylesheet template... which apparently stopped saving about halfway through... meaning it lost a bunch of my styles... and now my comments look like ass.

Kim, that sounds lurvely. The more ammunition with which to prattle sonorously about The Unheralded Genius Of America's Favorite Architect, the better! Tiffany glass would be nice to see up close too, it's more to my liking, stylistically-speaking.

Adrith: The only time I've been to Mt. Vernon was to see George Washington's swank pad, and by the time we arrived I had a devil of a stomachache, so while everyone else went touring, I slept in the back of the Jeep and gave myself a sunburn. Not one of my finer moments.

Posted by: Michelle on November 5, 2002 10:33 AM

Oh, and, all my self-inflicted injuries are healing just fine (the one from the sharp zinc channel on my wrist now looks like something the cat might've done three days ago). However, tonight at class I will begin soldering, so the opportunities for injury will be ever so much broader: I can cut myself and I can burn myself!

Posted by: Michelle on November 5, 2002 10:36 AM

adrith beat me to it, but anyway. i was going to tell you that the pope-leighey house is really close to us. i've always wanted to go down there for a field trip. :) let me know if you want to go together sometime!

Posted by: allura on November 5, 2002 10:43 AM

"Frank Lloyd Wright Glass" by Doreen Ehrlich (2000, Courage Books) is a good book documenting the work Wright did in art glass. I just happened to have it checked out from my local library. Interesting reading, and lots of photos of his work.


Before you start soldering your panel, make sure you practice first on scrap lead came, just like you practiced cutting scrap glass before cutting your art glass. With soldering, there is real opportunity to inadvertently melt the lead came since it melts at nearly the same temperature as the solder. I saw this happen in my last class; not a pretty sight! Spend at least 10 minutes just melting blobs of solder onto some came so you get a feel for how it will melt. Also, make sure you have decent iron, one that won't get too hot.
Cheers, Bruce.

Posted by: Bruce on November 5, 2002 03:40 PM

Thanks, Bruce :) Practice soldering is probably a very good idea. I believe I would cry if I melted my lead.

I should be okay with my soldering iron at least, as our instructor picked it out for us. It's a Weller 100 I believe (already packed it in the car for tonight's class).

Posted by: Michelle on November 5, 2002 03:52 PM

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