Stained Glass Stars – Part 1

So I’ve been thinking about my next stained glass project ever since finishing my spider web last month. However, I haven’t had any time for stained glassing.  Until today!  They let us out of work 3 hours early [woohoo!], and since I’m not traveling for Thanksgiving [thank god] I headed down to my basement workshop the minute I got home.  I already knew what I wanted to make, because I saw it hanging in a window last week while I was out walking:  a glass star cut from one piece of glass.  I figured I could cut it out, foil the outer edges, solder them, attach a loop at the top for hanging, and be done.  But nothing related to DIY is ever as easy as it seems.

I started by unwrapping the colored glass pieces I bought 2 months ago at Shards in Peabody, MA, which included a blue piece, a purple piece, a green piece, and a red piece.  I decided to start with blue.  I sketched a freehand star onto the glass with a sharpie, then tried to cut it:

228a        228b

D’oh!  I tried cutting it again, and the same thing happened.  That’s when I ran upstairs and googled “cutting a star out of glass” and realized it’s not possible.  At least without a laser cutting machine.  You have to cut at least 5 pieces of glass and solder them together.  So I googled “star pattern” and found one I liked.  I loaded it into paint shop and drew cutting lines:

228c2        228d

I cut the pattern into 5 pieces, traced each piece onto the blue glass, and cut them:

228e        228f

I used my glass grinder to smooth down a few rough edges then foiled each piece:

228g        228h

Then it was back down to the basement to solder the star together.  I started with the 5 central seams, flipped it over and did the seams on the back side, then wedged it between the wood and soldered each edge:

228p

I created a hanging loop for the star out of copper wire & soldered it on top:

228j        228q

Solder is really crazy/cool stuff!  A bunch of it dripped and fell onto my workbench, but it didn’t stick – once it cooled I could pick it up and move it around:

228r        228s

A few drops fell onto the floor and thankfully missed my foot.  I’m guessing that wouldn’t feel very good…

I hung the star in the living room window.  I can’t believe that in just 2½ hours I went from raw glass to finished star!!!

228t        228u

I’ll end this post with some cute pictures of the rats eating whipped cream.  They LOVE whipped cream!

228x        228v

228w

(Visited 689 times, 1 visits today)

8 Comments

  1. I like the way that you hung up your stained glass spider web. This seems like a great way to hang up a project that I am working on right now, so thank you for describing how you did it. Your star is pretty cool, do you have any ideas of good places to buy glass? I have been wanting to find more and cooler color options.

  2. I like this even better than the web. Really love the color. A friend of mine made me a stained glass box with a 3D top of sorts. https://charlieandjo.wordpress.com/2012/05/13/mothers-favorite-flower/ Jo @ Let’s Face the Music

    • Love the box! I will have to attempt something like that someday! I love the color of the star, too. I am hoping to make a few more in different colors.

  3. Be careful that the weight of the spider web does not pull the fpoil away from the glass at the hooks. The star looks awesome. Now make it 3D

  4. Wow Alison, trial and error certainly works – and both your spider web and your star look gorgeous in your windows. Great job!

Leave a Reply