Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Tiny Stained Glass Replicas- Featuring Wright and Sullivan



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This is a very easy and fun way to make tiny stained glass windows. They would be good for a dollhouse or a model of a church or for jewelry or window hangings.
You need to start out with some stained glass windows to trace. What I did was visit Google Images and find some pictures to copy and print out. First I looked for "church stained glass" and found a panel that I liked. Then, since I am from Chicago, I thought of Frank Lloyd Wright and Louis Sullivan. Both men are most famous for their architecture but they also designed gorgeous windows for many of their buildings. There are a multitude of Frank Lloyd Wright images available online. You can also purchase or locate a Dover book that features his stained glass patterns. For Sullivan I found a round window from his Auditorium Theater to complete my trio of pictures.
I printed the images out (remembering that they would shrink about 40%) and used a black Sharpie to outline them onto plain Shrinky Dink paper. You color on the rough side of the paper so that the ink adheres. I then used colored pencil to fill in the spaces. I cut out each image. You may decide to reverse the images before printing them out so they will be facing the right direction when viewed at the end, assuming you view them through the clear side of the Shrinky Dink.

After tracing them I punched holes using a hole punch in the Sullivan and Wright ones. The religious one I left plain as I think I want to build a frame for it and mount it in my daughter's dollhouse. I followed the directions and preheated my toaster oven to 350' with a foil-covered tray inside while it was heating up. I then lay my little windows on the foil and watched them shrink. You are supposed to cook them with the colored side up. In a minute or two they are ready to be removed from the oven. You can tell because they will have curled up and then relaxed. The second you get them out of the oven, transfer them to a flat surface and use a rubber spatula or cutting board or anything to flatten them.You have only a few seconds to do this before it hardens. If it does not dry flat you can always soften it again in the oven and try again. I know many people have been making really cool Shrinky Dink projects for years, but I am not one of those people. We never had the blank sheets before and so we just colored in lame shapes from the kits and made little, ugly jewelry. I really enjoyed this project and look forward to many more.

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