Monday, May 02, 2011
Ladyslipper Stained Glass
I took a stained glass class over the weekend to learn the copper foil technique for making stained glass. The other stained glass I have made in the past has been using the lead came technique which is great for geometric designs but doesn't lend itself well to more detailed designs, so I was excited to learn this new technique. Since I had previous experience cutting glass and soldering, I picked a more complicated design from a book of state flower stained glass designs. It was definitely a challenge but I am really happy with how it turned out.
As I was working, I thought a bit about the similarities between quilting and stained glass - both involve precisely cutting up a material and reassembling it in a new design, carefully fitting all the pieces together. The glass, like fabric in quilting, has a specific color, texture, and pattern when you get it, but you can think about how those characteristics of the pattern will interact with your design - and you can cut strategically (or "fussycut") as I did with the leaves above to create the look of veins. In looking at stained glass patterns online, I have seen that there is actually a style of applique quilting called stained glass quilting, and I have been thinking about quilt blocks as potential inspiration for stained glass designs.
Sometimes I think I may have too many hobbies (especially when I get into ones that involve a lot of tools and materials like stained glass), but I love trying new things and thinking about the cross-inspirations between different media. What about you - do you stick mainly to one craft or do you dabble in many different ones? How do you find that working in different media inspires you or changes the way you think about your projects?