Construction / Molds
Scoring / Breaking Glass
Fitting The Glass
Solder / Soldering
Releasing a Shade
Ring and Rim
Tools, Aids etc.
Health & Safety Concerns
Selling Your Artwork
PATTERN PREPARATION BY CAROL CONTI
In order to find flowers, leaves and background in sheets of glass, “windows”
help us focus on specifics in the glass.
1. Make as many paper copies as there are repeats of the original paper
2. Use a precision knife and cut away all the flowers that are on one
of the copies you had made.
3. On another copy, cut away all the leaves.
4. On the remaining copy, cut away all the background pieces.
5. Spray these copies with black paint in order to eliminate the white
of the pattern and the distracting lines that are left.
Take your windows to your glass store. Place one of the sheets of glass
that you may use in your lamp on an illuminated light table. If you are
deciding on a possible “flower” glass, lay your flower window
over the sheet and slowly move it around. You will “discover”
a flower! (Try this on several different sheets until you are satisfied
before making a purchase.) Repeat these steps using your windows to help
you choose glass for your leaves and background.
Place the sheet of “flower” glass that you have purchased
on your illuminated light table. Use the “flower window” as
a guide when you draw approximate outlines of your flowers onto the glass
with a Sharpie marking pen. (Mark the corresponding number from a reference
copy onto the glass flower outline, so there will be less of a problem
laying out the mylar pattern pieces onto the glass later on.) Don’t
feel that you have to stay at one area for a specific flower, but take
advantage of the window when there is some obvious coloring, movement
or shading that you want to use. After your flowers have been outlined,
proceed to the other sheets of glass and, with your other windows, repeat
With some lamp backgrounds, you find that you can skip around on the glass
and get away with drawing your pattern pieces out randomly. However, on
some of Tiffany’s designs, the background must be laid out in a
consistent manner so that the movements, textures and colors of in the
glass flow behind the leaves and flowers.
If you find that some of the outlines you have drawn will pose cutting
problems, erase the outlines with denatured alcohol and then spread them
out so that you will be able to cut around the outlines and still be true
to what the windows showed you.
Holding copies take care of storing mylar pattern pieces and is more efficient
than keeping the pieces in envelopes.
l. Make three more copies of the original paper pattern to hold the mylar
pattern pieces. (One of these copies will hold the mylar leaves, another
the mylar flowers and the last will hold the mylar background pieces.
2. Cover these holding copies with clear contact paper. (The contact paper
will protect the design lines, letters or numbers on the holding copy
so they won’t be damaged by the glue.)
3. As you cut out your mylar pattern, use a glue stick to attach each
pattern piece to its proper place on the holding copy. (It’s easier
to find pattern pieces if they are separated by having the flowers on
one copy and the leaves and background pieces on their own holding copies.)
4. Later, after you have cut and ground the first glass repeat, you will
reattach the pattern pieces to their proper places on the holding copies,
so that the patterns will be ready for the next repeat.
Make paper copies of the original paper pattern for reference copies.
Have as many photo copies made as there are repeats of the design.
An easel is simply a piece of double-strength clear glass cut to the size
of your paper reference copies. (Sand the edges of this glass to protect
your hands from being cut.) These glass easels are placed over the reference
copies on your worktable. Later on, as you construct your lamp, you will
use a tiny ball of Odyssey’s Tacky Wax to attach the prepared glass
piece to the glass easels above its corresponding place shown on the reference
copy. The glass easel can be lifted from the reference copy and placed
on an illuminated light table at any time. This procedure makes it possible
for you to continually examine your lamp as it develops and allows you
to make any needed changes. This procedure makes it possible for you to
examine your lamp and make any changes as it is developing. The easel
also takes care of storing your developing project and eliminates the
possibility of misplacing a piece. As each pattern piece is removed from
its glass, it should be dried and returned to the holding set, since it
will be used again for the next repeat.
Use a glue stick to attach the mylar pattern pieces to the corresponding
outlines you have drawn on the sheet of glass. The glue stick works well
by holding the mylar to the glass if you allow sufficient time for it
to dry. After each glass piece is ground, dried off and attached with
a bit of wax to its place on the easel, the pattern piece should also
be dried and reattached to the holding copy using a glue stick. Now the
pattern is ready for the next repeats.
All glass should be cut to match the shape outlined on the mylar pattern
and your reference sheet. Don’t cut to match the shapes on the mold...the
mold’s lines are only used to approximate the position of the glass
pieces. They do not define their exact contour or placement.
When you’ve completed cutting out your lamp and making changes as
you go, the easels should be laid on the light table in the order in which
they will be placed on the mold. Now you must make your final selections.
Check to see if any section is distracting; too light or transparent,
too dark or opaque causing a dead area or too streaky or the streaks are
running the wrong way causing a disruption in the continuity of your lamp.
Lay the left side of the first easel on the right side of the last easel
to check on flow and compatibility, since these sides will also be joined