How to Make a Stained Glass Mosaic
In this project learn how to craft a stained glass mosaic piece of art to hang in your home.
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Project designed and demonstrated by Jami King.
Materials and Tools:
pattern to be reproduced*
frame with removable glass panel
wheeled glass nippers
clear adhesive shelving paper
disposable rubber gloves
non-sanded tile grout
clear silicone glue
bowl of water
small bowls to divide glass pieces
*This can be a picture, postcard, painting, drawing, etc.
1. Choose your pattern and size it to the glass in the picture frame. Remember, you'll be working on the backside of your project. If you can, reverse the image of your pattern to be reproduced. Make sure any words or numbers are reversed on your pattern or they will come out wrong.
2. Pick stained glass colors and nip random sized pieces into small bowls or piles on the work surface. Wear your safety glasses while snipping the glass.
3. Cut shelving paper approximately 1" larger than the pattern. Tape the pattern face down onto the non-sticky clear side of the shelving paper and remove the protective layer from the opposite side to expose the adhesive. You should see your pattern through the exposed shelving paper.
4. With tweezers or your fingers, place the nipped stained glass onto your pattern no more than 1/8" apart.
5. Clean the glass panel in the picture frame and apply a medium to thin layer of silicon glue to the entire surface.
6. Place the glued side of the glass panel onto the exposed surface of your stained glass pattern and press firmly.
7. Allow glue to dry completely and remove the shelving paper. If stained glass piece sticks to the shelving paper rather than the glass panel, simply re-glue the piece and place it back into its respective position. Allow to dry.
8. Mix grout and water until it is a thick cookie dough consistency and apply to the stained glass. Wear two pairs of gloves to prevent cutting your hands, and gently press the grout into the small cracks between the glass pieces. Remove as much excess grout as possible.
9. Allow grout to dry completely and wipe off any excess with a wet sponge. Place the finished mosaic piece back into the picture frame.
White glue that is supposed to dry to clear doesn’t always dry clear. Start with silicone glue that's clear when wet for better results.
Stained glass patterns work very well for this technique. You may want to use colored pencils to color in the appropriate areas of your pattern.
Many stained glass shops sell scrap glass by the pound. If you purchase this, make sure you have enough for your project before you adhere the glass in place, because it can be hard to get more of the exact same color.
See how Baltimore's Angela Smith creates a stained-glass trinket box.