Holiday Stained Glass

For this project, students began by decoupaging squares of tissue (3 colors) on to a 9" X 12" piece of tag board. We used Mod Podge matte glue, since these would be laminated later.

1. Add a little water to the glue to thin it and make it go further. It won't hurt it and it will save your budget. It also helps make the glue spread easier.

2. Buy inexpensive foam brushes to use with the glue because, inevitibly, one or two will not get cleaned no matter how diligent you are. We use this kind that comes 10 per box for $5.15.

3. Dab a bit of the glue to the paper and place the tissue on the glue. Most of the glue will then be brushed on top of the tissue, ensuring that it lays flat.

4. Overlap tissue pieces to create new colors.

5. Stress that all pieces MUST be flat or the top layer won't lie down the way it is supposed to.

Once the background is finished, begin working on the black design. I give the students lots of visual references (cards, posters, photos) to look at before they begin drawing their design. Of course, they are always told to change the visual reference to make it their own.

Students trace around a rectangular pattern that measures 7" X 10" on a black 9" X 12" piece of black paper. This forms the frame around the edge of their stained glass design. I stress that their design must touch each side of this frame in at least one place in order to keep the design from falling apart.

Some tips:

1. The design should be simple and easily recognizable.

2. The design should touch all sides of the frame in at least one spot to keep it from falling apart.

3. Have students mark spaces that will be cut away with Xs to keep track.

4. Start cutting away larger areas first and then work to the smaller areas.

5. Bend the paper and make a cut to get inside the frame- do NOT cut from the edge or it will fall apart.

6. Under careful observation, older students may use Xacto knives to cut away smaller areas.
7. Paper punches work great for snowmen, lights on trees, etc.

8. When gluing frame to the background, be sure to glue the "junky" penciled-up side down so that the nice, clean black side shows!

I laminated my students' work to make it shiny like stained glass.
See more student work on our Artsonia Gallery.


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