It’s stained glass! (except not)

I like to go to the craft store and look at stuff that I don’t know how to do (yet). Why? Because maybe it’s not as hard as I think it is, and wouldn’t it be cool to learn something new?! That’s how I ended up with a stained glass painting kit. It was on clearance because the box was ripped! How cool is that?! Not knowing what to do with such a thing, I immediately bought a cheap 8″ x 10″ piece of plastic (my “glass”) to go with it. It was right next to the paint, and I think it was maybe a dollar.

This is the product I found at my local craft spot, but you can buy the same one on Amazon and, as a bonus, I earn a small commission at no additional cost to you if you buy it after clicking this link. All proceeds go toward supporting my crafting habit.

After an exhaustive Pinterest search, I decided to make a Disney princess picture for Madeline’s room. I found a picture of a beautiful stained glass piece made by an awesome Polish artist named Anna Danowska (shared with her permission – check out her other work here) and decided I’d do my best to duplicate it.

Isn’t that awesome? I bet now you want to learn how to work with stained glass. No? Just me?

Because this was my very first attempt, I decided to to a trial run on some throw-away plastic and made a small …. ok, no, I thought I could finish that with a straight face, but it wasn’t happening. Being me, I jumped right in with both feet and got to work. No risk it, no biscuit.

Not too shabby for a first try, particularly considering that the kit didn’t have all the colors I needed so I had to do a little mixing on the fly.

It’s obviously not as nice looking as the original (and it looks better in person), but that’s hardly surprising considering that I was flying by the seat of my pants on this one. I’m 100% serious when I say that anyone can do this. I printed out a picture of the image I was trying to copy (in black and white), taped it behind the plastic sheet, and then just followed the super simple directions on the box of paint. That’s. It. The only “skill” required is a somewhat steady hand to apply the black – it’s in a little squeeze bottle, and you need to apply somewhat even pressure on the bottle as you smoothly move along the lines. It took a while to get the hang of it. But, when you consider that a lot of real stained glass isn’t all smooth lines and even leading (the black connector stuff), then it’s not too far off from what I was going for.

Well, that’s not much of a tutorial, but let me just say that a tutorial is not needed for this project. Just get your paint, a sheet of plastic, and a picture of what you want the finished project to look like. Go slowly, let each step dry thoroughly (it takes a day or two for the black to fully harden (it goes on thick and you do NOT want it mixing with your other colors) and then another few days for the rest of the paint to harden up), and have fun with it. Also, I don’t know why it’s called “painting,” because it’s really more like “glooping” – instead of a brush, they give you a tiny plastic spatula to scoop out the paint and dump it where you want it to go. Simple.

When you’re done, you can pick up a cheap empty frame at any place that does framing, and pop it in a window with a little suction cup and a picture hanging D-ring. So there you go. Have at it!

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