Thursday, October 13, 2011

Stained Glass Window Art

I've been meaning to do this one for a long time.  It's an idea I got ages ago.

We used picture frames with glass, Plaid's lead liner from their Gallery Glass line (it's for simulating lead outlines, and it isn't lead), Biocolor paints, and drawings on paper that the children made.

First they drew their pictures.

When they were done, I took the glass out of the frames, and carefully traced their lines with the liquid leading.

tip: You can correct any mistakes by scraping the leading after it dries for a bit.  The whole process is very forgiving.

When it was mostly firm, I had the children paint their drawings, showing them how the paint would 'pool' inside the borders of the leading.

When dry, they were inspected to see if any spots needed more layers of paint,

and when they were satisfied, we put them in frames, and then in the window!





You have the option of leaving these and bringing them out seasonally, or you may peel off the biocolor and liquid leading later for a new painting in a new season!


  1. Beautiful! I've wanted to try this ever since I saw the one at your house. Maybe I'll finally get around to doing it, and see if the boys are interested also.

  2. I loved that one we made for Eric's mom for her birthday last year... have been wanting our own, since! :)
    This time we just used the bio paints instead of paints and the clear window stuff. Works just as well!

  3. Have you ever done the project in which you mix Elmer's and acrylic paints right in the Elmer's bottle? I bet that would be an acceptable liquid leading substitute, if it was applied thickly.

    Do you LOVE your Biocolor paints? I've been considering them, but I'm not sure how many different types of paint I really need. I've seen reviews, though, that compare their quality to that of craft acrylics, and if that was indeed the case, I might be sold.

  4. I haven't done it, Julie. I don't know if it would work... the liquid leading is more of the consistency of Aileen's craft glue. It holds its shape and form well, doesn't spread and flatten like Elmer's. ??

    Also - the bio paints are different, they're pliable. Like soft, bendy plastic (think window clings).
    Because of that they don't make the paper shrink, but they can be translucent when you don't want - but great for things like Christmas ornaments and things like that for when you want light traveling through the paints.
    We save them for projects like that.
    You get the same effect (so I understand) from Elmer's and food coloring, but the bottles are good enough for me. :)

  5. Thanks for the how-to. Didn't know about the liquid leading; will have to get some. The kids here are getting really into drawing people lately; I'd love to see a row of their stained-glass portraits!

  6. Awesome. You are always up to so much fun with the kiddos.

  7. The commercial Liquid Leading is thicker than Elmer's and paint. Here is a post where we made "stained glass" with Elmer's and paint as the leading. It turned out interesting, but you can see it spread on the glass. It spead a little less on the plastic sheets. If you want the crisp lines, I would go with the Liquid Leading.

  8. Phyllis - that's what I figured it would do. I was thinking, "corn starch?? borax? How to make Elmer's firmer??" :)

  9. This is so cool! It would make wonderful holiday gifts, so thanks for the very timely how-to.

    You rock :)

  10. I love it! Do you leave the back of the picture frame off, so the light can come through? If so, how does the glass stay in place?

  11. Stacie, yeah, the back stays off. Just the frame and the glass.
    There are either little staples or little metal tabs on the back to keep the backing (cardboard or wood) in place - it holds the glass just the same.

  12. Awesome! Thanks for sharing. I'm going to try it. My son probably won't do it, as he dislikes art projects, but I'll have fun doing it myself! Might make a good Christmas gift.......

  13. What a great effect! I love them all.

  14. I really love these--such a cute idea (and simple, too)!


Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!