Stained glass windows are incredibly unique and beautiful pieces of art. Unfortunately, there are few professionals today who are experienced in stained glass restoration. At Houston Stained Glass, we’ve made it our mission to preserve this ancient art form that we hold so dear to our hearts. We are proud to be able to offer this service to stained glass owners all across the United States. Continue Reading
Author Archives Martin Faith
May 04, 2021
Here at Houston Stained Glass, we are part of our parent company Scottish Stained Glass. This means we get to be a part of some pretty outstanding restorations and repairs. Recently though we did a recreation. This project was a little bit different than what we usually do but incredibly special. It was a stained glass window recreation at Sam Houston State University.
Replicating Sam Houston State’s Historic Stained Glass Windows
Texas is full of schools, one of the oldest of which is Sam Houston State University which was founded in 1879. Back in its day, the campus was something to behold. It was made up primarily of lovely arched brick buildings, one of which had an amazing stunning stained glass window. This window was a point of pride for the school but had been destroyed by a fire in 1982. SHSU decided they wanted us to recreate the original masterpiece to commemorate their school motto “The measure of a Life is its Service”. The issue was, there was only one color picture of the window. So, we would have to work from a yearbook photo from 1964! Being one of the most prolific and talented stained glass studios in the country–we were up for the challenge! and we are so glad they did. We took the restoration journey with them as we navigated some of the challenges recreating a stained glass window presents.
Modern Technology for Restoring Stained Glass
As mentioned the stained glass window at Sam Houston State University no longer existed. This presented a major challenge in design and in keeping the window true to its authentic roots. We realized quickly this charge would require innovative solutions so we turned to modern technology to start the process. We use a combo of old and new techniques all the time when restoring stained glass windows–so this was nothing new. The first thing we did was scan the original picture into the computer then print it out full size. This allowed us to carefully trace the lines of the original. Once our drawing was perfect we put it back into our CAD program to make it twice as big since the school requested we double the size of the window. This process, while time-consuming, gave us a template that was an exact replica of the original work of art to work from. In other words, time and technology, paid off in accuracy!
Restoring Sam Houston State University’s Lost Stained Glass
Finding materials used more than a century ago is difficult if not impossible. We knew this would be a challenge from the start. Color formulation with stained glass has changed drastically over the years. So rather than attempt to find the same color formulas and materials we used a top conservation specialist to find colors that were as close to the originals as possible. And, the colors were pretty darn close. However, that was not quite enough. We are one of the country’s top stained glass painting studios and we knew our artists could paint over the “close enough” hue to make them an exact match, and they did!
The Results of the Recreated Commemorative Stained Glass Window
All in all the work on the commemorative stained glass window of SHSU took us about a full year. Long restorations are common when dealing with very large detailed stained glass artwork restorations. Since this stained glass masterpiece had a lot of shadows, clothing, and faces the painting required extensive layering to get the depth needed–ten layers in some places! Also, this window ended up with a staggering 3,000- 4,000 individual pieces of glass. But we are happy to pronounce that this window is a replica down to the last detail. The university could not be happier with the aesthetics of this new school icon! In fact, it has once again become the pride and joy of campus. The entire university–from staff to students–is just delighted by this beautiful stained glass replica. And, you know what? The Scottish Stained Glass family is too! Because we love paying respect to vintage stained glass by preserving it, in one way or another, for generations yet to come.
If you have a stained glass restoration or rebuild project we would love to speak to you about it too! Contact us at Houston Stained Glass today for a free consultation.
Sep 01, 2020
Here at Houston Stained Glass, a wonderful part of our business model is being part of one of the most talented stained glass studios in the US--Scottish Stained Glass. This allows us to witness and even work on some of the most unique stained glass installations in the country. Each custom job comes with its own set of challenges–but our work is incredibly fulfilling. Our job is not only to transform churches but the lives of the people too. One example of this is our most recent in St. Andrew The Apostle Catholic Church located in Wray, CO.
The Scope of Our Custom Stained Glass Project
Wray is a small town of 2000 but this stained glass job was big. The church, built 30 years ago, wanted five custom panels. They did not have stained glass windows in the sanctuary and felt like this addition would make their place of worship feel more like a house of God. They reached out to us to design five new, custom stained glass panels. They asked if we could do this safely during a pandemic and the answer was, of course! We have been doing safe stained glass installations throughout the summer and were well-versed what to do to keep the aging congregation safe. We were thrilled to have a chance to do the custom work we do so well.
Customizing Stained Glass to Be Historically Accurate and Beautiful
The church congregation asked us to create a depiction of the five Luminous Mysteries (baptism, wedding, proclamation, transfiguration, and last supper). These depictions were very significant to their doctrine. For a job this special, we pitched custom painted artwork was an option. They absolutely loved the idea and we began our work. Not only is painted glass a stunning style of stained glass work but it is rare because not too many artisans do it. We are fortunate enough to work with an amazing painted glass artist–Maria–and she really came through on this one. She wanted things to look as life-like as possible so we used actual models. We also did thorough research for historical accuracy like:
- The Appropriate background and foliage for the region
- Authentic tile design for floors in that time-period
- A historically accurate depiction of the town of Cana
The Beauty of Custom Painted Stained Glass
The outcome of our custom, five-panel stained glass project in St. Andrew The Apostle Catholic Church was–breathtaking. Mostly black and brown paint was used and we were able to really pull color from the glass background. The construction of the stained glass was geared to harness the natural sunlight. This created a lot of depth in her depictions of faces, hands, fauna, and flora. The result was a stunning three-dimensional appearance. The work came out both authentic but interesting. In the end, the congregation (who watched socially distanced) were amazed by the beauty of the process as a whole. One member even said, “Now we have a church”. It is affirmation like this that gives us that pride and makes us love our work in custom stained glass creation.
For more information on custom stained glass or breathing life into an old piece of stained glass with restoration–contact us at Houston Stained Glass today!
Jun 25, 2020
While many of us are spending significantly more time within our homes, it can be very easy for homeowners to start noticing different issues that may not have come up in the past. Especially with neighbors staying home more as well, you can run into a lot of privacy issues. One of the rooms in your home that really requires proper seclusion is the bathroom. When it comes to effective privacy solutions that are ideal for moisture exposure, the options are quite limited. Privacy stained glass offers an effective way to keep your Houston bathroom both private and beautiful.
May 07, 2020
Historical stained glass can offer so much unique charm and character for any property. Whether you have a residential or commercial building, stained glass can enhance aesthetics, wow guests, and much more. Having these stained glass features can provide incredible benefits regardless of your property type. When you start to see the signs of deterioration among your stained glass, it’s important to start considering restoration. Historical stained glass restoration can provide some incredible benefits.
Apr 09, 2020
Many Houston homes are known for their incredible architectural styles and grand appearances. With many of these residential properties promoting some of the most amazing entryways, it can be tough transforming yours. In order to achieve that highly desired custom look, stained glass is a perfect addition to any entryway. You can create a bright entrance and beautiful entryway by incorporating custom stained glass throughout your sidelights, transoms, door, and any surrounding windows.
The Benefits of Stained Glass for Your Houston Entryway
Stained glass can actually improve both the function and beauty of your entryway. By doubling as a privacy solution, stained glass can effectively block unwanted views from the outside in. This provides both safety and comfort for homeowners while boosting curb appeal and decor. Leaded glass and some traditional stained glass options can both obstruct views without compromising natural sunlight transmissions. Keep your entryway bright and inviting while boasting that custom-build look. Custom stained glass is perfect for creating a matching design throughout your entryway or adding accent pieces to your existing decor. There are countless ways that stained glass can transform your home and add property value while enhancing your exterior aesthetics. Entryway stained glass makes a great first impression for visitors and guests that enter your home.
Work with Houston’s Top Stained Glass Studio
Houston Stained Glass is honored to be the top stained glass studio serving the Texas area. We’re proudly providing free virtual consultations and can help you with your entire project through online platforms and over the phone. Our stained glass artisans would love the opportunity to help you design stunning entryway options that are a great investment for your home. We can bring all your ideas to fruition.
For more information regarding custom stained glass for your Houston home, please contact us!
Mar 24, 2020
Like many types of art forms, stained glass needs to be restored from time to time to combat the inevitable degradation as time takes its toll. There are two specific ways to properly restore stained glass art–true to the artist’s intent and true to the original technique. Which avenue you go with depends on your overarching goals for the restoration of stained glass in your Houston home, church or commercial space. Whichever way you choose to have your piece of stained glass art restored is perfectly acceptable aesthetically and will have your stained glass piece looking fantastic again. Below we have gone into detail about both restoration types.
Stained Glass Restoration True to the Original Artist’s Intent
When we restore stained glass here at Houston Stained Glass we always utilize our well-trained stained glass experts. We have them analyze the original stained glass intent in detail. This means looking at the style of the time of creation, understanding the materials of the time and analyzing historical context. When we mimic the artist’s intent we use modern techniques to replicate the exact style of your stained glass artwork as closely as possible to that of the original artist. This is the most frequent type of restoration we do. This is because new materials are easier to source, better for making the piece durable and are virtually indistinguishable from those used at the time in many cases. However, the appearance could be a bit different and under scrutiny, these changes could become apparent.
Stained Glass Restoration True to the Original Artist’s Technique
When we do restorations that stay true to the original artist’s exact styles and techniques–we do not stray from materials and techniques used by the artist at the time. It is more difficult and more expensive and sometimes may be impossible to accomplish. Why? For example, let’s look at Tiffany’s stained glass. To restore a tiffany piece, and stay true to the very unique Tiffany process of blending glasses, we would need to source glass from another TIffany piece–since this technique is impossible to mimic. Therefore, the only authentic way to restore a piece of historical Tiffany stained glass–is by finding and using another piece of antique Tiffany stained glass. This could be difficult and sometimes impossible. When we attempt this we are always in close communication with our clients.
Stained Houston for Authentic Stained Glass Restoration
No matter what type of restoration you choose for your stained glass art piece, we have many skilled stained glass art restorers who have advanced degrees in restoration. They value keeping the intent and style of the original stained glass and always understand the original context of the piece. We don’t try to place this piece of stained glass in time in history but rather attempt to restore it by staying as true as possible to the original artist’s intent. We are happy to work with you on an authentic restoration using materials that are true to the era or close to the original era but true to the intent.
Contact us for more information and to discuss your stained glass art piece restoration today.
Feb 10, 2020
We get a lot of clients who come to us looking for stained glass simply because it is so beautiful and something they really want in their Houston home. But here at Houston Stained Glass, we like to tell our clients that stained glass is more than just a lovely art form. We like to point out its value as well. In fact, we even like to say it pays for itself. The reason we say this is because stained glass adds to a house’s value–just like other home improvements. The benefits of having stained glass on your Houston home are, therefore, far more than just for beauty but for profit too. Find out how stained glass pays off big time for homeowners with the good sense to have it installed.
Stained Glass Appraises For More Than You Pay
The price of stained glass will vary depending on the size, shape, and details you want to add in. However, a good starting range is anywhere from $11-$17 per square foot for standard designs. For very intricate, custom designs, the cost could be as high as $50 per square foot. However, most people find their windows in the first range. Yes, stained glass windows cost more than a regular old window, curtains or drapes but, unlike those, they add value to your home. For example, a stained glass window that costs you $300 can be expected to appraise for 5x-10x more when you go to sell. Not a bad return for something that is spectacular and that you get to thoroughly enjoy while you live in your home.
Stained Glass Increases Curb Appeal on Your Houston Home
Stained glass is absolutely stunning. This is something nearly everyone agrees on. It is, therefore, the type of display that is especially attractive to prospective buyers. When applied on the front-facing window–in sidelights, transoms or front doors, it adds value through curb appeal. When you go to sell your home, not only will you find a home with stained glass fetches a better price but will also sell faster. The faster you sell your home the less likely you will wind up paying two mortgages and losing money. In this way, stained glass pays for itself by saving you at selling time.
Stained Glass Houston For Your Stained Glass Installation
As you can see, stained glass is not only beautiful but a great investment too. This is especially true when done by a skilled artisan studio like us at Stained Glass Houston. If you would like, we have designs for you to choose from but you can also have something customized to fit your style. If you are thinking about getting a stained glass window made, first come up with a clear budget for us (about $11-$17 per square foot) then schedule a free design consultation. To learn more, contact us and we will guide you from there.
Jan 13, 2020
Unfortunately, many U.S. churches are now nearing an age where their stained glass windows are badly in need of restoration. However, the process to restore church stained glass does require a significant investment, which is why many churches shy away from it. The process takes time and financial resources. Churches put off the repairs, and put them off again, and before long, it’s too late to fix them. Then, the priceless art is lost forever.
But is it worth it to restore church stained glass? Many Houston churches want to know. When making this kind of decision, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons.
We say yes. Church stained glass is important for cultural and historic reasons. Not only is it one of the world’s most beautiful art forms, but also one of the most meaningful. Here’s why.
Dec 17, 2019
Like most people, your mind goes to churches and chapels when you imagine stained glass. But stained glass is actually much, much more. Especially in today’s modern era where stained glass in homes is being taken to the next level. That’s right, stained glass artists like us here at Houston Stained Glass are creating modern stained glass masterpieces for homes and commercial spaces like you have never seen before. It is a fantastic way to take your Houston home from ordinary to amazing–and make it totally your own in the process. While windows are primarily where we install stained glass you can use stained glass in various other “non-window” areas and it looks stunning! Plus there are endless colors and styles to choose from–which means that you get a truly custom masterpiece when you opt for stained glass. Keep reading to learn more about the types of stained glass that will make a huge visual impact in your Houston home and allow you to express your personal style in a very modern manner.
Stained Glass Panels
When we first started in stained glass over two decades ago, stained glass panels were usually given and marked occasions like weddings or pictured a family crest. That type of stained glass is still very much in demand but free-hanging stained glass panels as art or room dividers have begun coming into vogue as well. Modern and durable, stained glass panels can be hung nearly anywhere in your Houston custom home–on a wall or from the ceiling. They function as everything from a unique art piece to a small or large divider to an entire wall of stained glass and are incredibly striking.
Modern Stained Glass Cabinets
Stained glass has very traditional roots but in today’s design era–it is being updated to fit readily with the times. This means stained glass in intriguing applications, one of which is stained glass on kitchen cabinets. That’s right, stained glass goes perfectly on cabinets because it provides a level of coverage for any clutter behind the glass while still giving a modern open cabinet feel to your Houston home’s kitchen. Perfect for design aesthetic from retro to modern, stained glass cabinets are a hot design addition for the new 2020 decade!
Stained Glass Lighting
Stained glass lamp shades are definitely a retro type of application but what’s old is new again and this ageless stained glass application is coming back in style. Need proof? A Tiffany stained glass lampshade recently sold at auction for over 3 million dollars! That means at over 80 years old stained glass lampshades are as valuable and relevant today as they ever were. We don’t expect you to go out and buy a rare and expensive Tiffany stained glass lamp shade but looking into a lovely, custom stained glass lighting fixtures is definitely something worth considering to customize your Houston home!
For more information on custom stained glass creation in Houston be sure to reach out to us a Houston Stained Glass today!