A whole other part of stained glass work I perform is stained glass restorations.
Restoring older stained glass becomes necessary due to weather damage, vandalism, or just the normal degrading on the lead came in older windows. In most leaded glass more than 75 years old the lead will have deteriorated to the point that it cannot hold the glass in the structure any longer.
After an assessment and an agreement on the work to be performed, a careful record, both digital imaging and cartooning, is made of the original work.
Complete disassembly or partial disassembly is next, with particular note given to sections of glass that have been damaged over the years. Part of the pre-work is identifying damaged pieces of glass and agreeing with the glass owner what type of glass will be used to replace the broken pieces.
A thorough cleaning of all glass is next. In the work shown below, the pieces that were re-used took about eight hours to clean. The glass was not just dirty, but had been painted in spots, silicone had been used in various areas as well as putty (to keep the window together over the years) all of which had to be removed.
Once every piece of glass has been cleaned reassembly commences, coupled with much cutting and grinding of the newer replacement glass pieces to fit the original assembly.
Restoration almost always takes more labour time that is required for building a new piece of stained glass artwork due to the need to disassemble and clean the old glass before starting to rebuild it.
Yet, when it’s completed, a marvellous window or other stained glass work from centuries past has regained the glory intended by the original artist, sometimes hundreds of years after the original work was built.
The piece of fully restored glass art featured on this page has now be reinstalled and is on display in the very satisfied client’s window.
If you have need of stained glass restoration work, Sue would be happy to discuss your project with you. Contact her here.