Faux Stained Glass

Composite image of the four types of faux stained glass laying together at different angles, showing the different techniques and finishes.
Examples of the “faux stained glass” techniques outlined in this blog post

I have a confession to make. I am a lover of light and all things that allow the light to shine through. Stained glass always captures my attention when it is illuminated, something about it just sings to my soul.

The Crafter’s Workshop provided me with some product to create this project. The opinions I share are solely my own.

Have you ever been mesmerized by a stained glass window with the sun shining through it? I sure have. I find them absolutely fascinating, and I really wanted to see if I could attempt to recreate the look and feel of stained glass using stencils and mixed media supplies. In this post, you’ll find an outline of the four techniques that I played with in an attempt to make faux stained glass that feels like the light is shining through it.

To start, I used mixed media, watercolor weight paper and taped it to my work board using blue painter’s tape by 3M. I then sprinkled ColorSparx powders in multiple shades around the page using a fan brush, by tapping some powder onto the brush, then tapping the brush across the page. I used our Spritz Bottle to lightly spray over the sprinkled powders, activating them, and dried it with my heat gun.

Close up image showing the completed page with TCW9006 Gloss Gel Medium applied and dried to give the ColorSparx powders a glass-like look and finish.
TCW9006 Gloss Gel Medium adds a glass-like finish over the dried ColorSparx powders

Using a catalyst spatula by Princeton, I dragged some TCW9006 Gloss Gel Medium across the page to give the dried ColorSparx powders a glass-like finish and shine which I dried with my heat gun. Next, I taped stencil TCW883 Circle Jumble over the dried gloss gel page. I then applied TCW9009 Black Modeling Paste using the same catalyst spatula, and peeled off the stencil & washed it immediately (Never leave wet modeling paste on a stencil!). I used my heat gun to dry the modeling paste, and removed the painters tape from the edges of the page.

Voila! A stained glass like page results. Lastly, I die cut some black paper using a Sizzix die by Tim Holtz and cut the glossy painted page to cover the back of the cathedral window die cut. I used PVA glue to attach the die cut to the matching cut out from the faux stained glass page. Ta da! Here’s the completed cathedral window…

Image of the finished gloss page laid face down. The completed cathedral window die cut with the gloss page backing lays on top of the back of the page. A bottle of PVA glue and a pair of IKEA scissors lay to the right of the finished window.
I turned the page over to trace and cut the die cut cathedral window shape

Next, I did a variation on this theme. Using a remnant cut off from an old collaged mixed-media project, I die cut another cathedral window shape and again backed it with the same gloss background page. I really love how this one looks like aged stone!

Close up image showing the completed gloss backed cathedral window die cuts. The 'aged stone' window lays on top of the black paper window. The close up shows the details of the collage in the aged stone piece featuring multiple washi tape designs and partial images.
Close up image showing the ‘aged stone’ cathedral window die cut over gloss gel page

Lastly, to really challenge myself, I decided to try Ranger Adirondack Alcohol inks on acetate using the same stencil. I simply laid the stencil onto the acetate and dropped the alcohol inks over the stencil. This leaves a wonderful stencil impression of the outline of the stencil, but it also blends together in places to give it variety and subtlety. The great thing about using acetate is that it can be die cut, and light can actually shine through it. Here, I took some images using tiny lights to show you the effects of the finished acetate alcohol ink cathedral windows.

Composite image of the four completed cathedral window die cuts shown laying together on the tabletop. A portion of each window is shown so that they are able to be compared to one another.
The four completed cathedral window die cuts

Do you want to see this blog post as a fly-by video (51 sec)? Hop on over to my YouTube Channel to watch it by clicking on this video link. I’d love to hear which one of these windows is your favorite and why, please leave us a comment, below!

Michaela Butterworth
The Crafter’s Workshop Design Team Member

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4 thoughts on “Faux Stained Glass

  1. After you stenciled on the black gesso, it just sang to me too! I have always loved the stained glass in churches. They are magnificent. I did a stained glass in the 70’s using copper, but this is so much easier. The alcohol ink version is so beautiful as well. The old remnant window looks superb. These would make a nice lamp to be used with an LED candle.

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