How to Create Stained Glass Patterns

Creating your own stained glass pattern is not as difficult as one may think. There are various computer programs available to help you in your design or you can choose to draw your own with a few simple tools. All you will need is paper, a ruler, pencils, access to a photo copier. A personal printer and scanner for smaller pieces is helpful.

Source
photo used with permission
photo used with permission | Source
Finished stained glass piece
Finished stained glass piece | Source

Downloading Free Stained Glass Patterns

There are various websites from which you can download free patterns. One of my favorite places to select patterns from is Spectrum Glass. To download patterns from this site, you will need to sign up for an account. The only thing required is your name and email address. Once you have an account you can view all the various patterns that they have to offer. When you find the pattern that you like, download it to your computer via a PDF (Portable Document Format) file.

The picture of the frog is from one of the many patterns that I've downloaded to create a stained glass window hanging light catcher.

  • Once the file has been saved to your computer you can print it or enlarge or shrink it to the size that you prefer.
  • You will then want to print two copies. One to use as your pattern and the other to cut shapes for glass cutting.
  • Glass colors and glass textures are your own personal preference as to what you use. These patterns do come with suggested colors.
  • For the eyes you can use a marker to color them or use glass beads.


Chevy Emblem Pattern
Chevy Emblem Pattern | Source
This picture was a little difficult to take with the mirrored glass due to it picking up my reflection.
This picture was a little difficult to take with the mirrored glass due to it picking up my reflection. | Source

Design Your Own Stained Glass Pattern

My husband is a big Chevy fan and I wanted to design a stained glass piece for the garage. I had an actual Chevy emblem from off of one of his vehicles, so I started with it. I drew out the pattern on a sheet of graph paper. I'd decided beforehand that the piece would have beveled glass to frame the piece. Bevels come in many different shapes and sizes. I chose four straight bevels measuring ten inches in length by one inch in width. I used mirrored glass on the emblem outline to make it look like chrome. The center of the emblem is a blue and gray striped glass. The background pieces are black onyx glass.

Creating your own pattern can be fun and rewarding. Abstract pieces can be easily made by using graph paper, a ruler and a pencil.


Beveled Flower
Beveled Flower | Source

Using Bevels

The piece in the very first picture at the top of this page was created starting with a beveled flower. I'd seen this bevel in a stained glass supply store and liked it. When I bought it I had no idea what I was going to make out of it. This piece I made for a kitchen cabinet insert. The flower has 5 petals and the center piece.

I measured the exact size I needed for the insert onto a piece of graph paper. I placed the beveled flower in the center of the paper and traced around it, and then hand drew the the three flower leaves. From there drew out the rest of the pattern.

Pattern Books

With most stained glass pattern books you will need to take the chosen pattern, have it either enlarged on a photo copier to the size you want, or scan it onto your computer and enlarge it. With a photo copier it can all be printed out in one piece. If doing this on your computer, you may need to print it out in several sheets. Personally I find it much easier to do on a photo copier.


Using Photographs to Create a Glass Pattern

To use a photograph for a pattern

Scan the photo onto your computer saving in paint or use with a stained glass program such as DragonFly Software.

Coloring Books

For making really cute sun-catchers coloring books are a great place to find patterns. Simply trace over the picture using a piece of paper, and you have your basic pattern. Make a copy of it so that you have your pattern and use the copy for your individual glass cut out pieces.

Stained Glass Art

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Comments 38 comments

Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 2 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Thanks so much RTalloni!


RTalloni profile image

RTalloni 2 years ago from the short journey

Thanks for this tutorial with tips and photos of your cute art projects. I love that you began the cabinet insert with the flower that you had no plan for--it's beautiful.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 3 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Thanks glassmosaicist for your link. I've bookmarked it so that I can follow your guide with your easy to follow instructions.


glassmosaicist profile image

glassmosaicist 3 years ago from UK

Hi Susan, give it a go its fun!

Check out my guide here if you like: http://www.lightmandalas.co.uk/Mosaic-instructions...


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 3 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

glassmosaicist, I've been wanting to try stained glass mosaic for quite some time now, and I even have an old coffee table that I want to try this on.


glassmosaicist profile image

glassmosaicist 3 years ago from UK

Stained glass is great but time consuming. I love the speed and effectivemess of stained glass mosaic


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

vibesites, Stained glass is a great hobby.


vibesites profile image

vibesites 4 years ago from United States

I love colorful stained glass -- perhaps it's high time to do some of them myself, thanks to your informative hub. :)


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Stephanie, Thank you so much!


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

GoodLady, I have several stained glass hubs that you may want to have a look at. It's a fun hobby and I really enjoy it.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Janis, Thanks for stopping by and for your comments.


Stephanie Henkel profile image

Stephanie Henkel 4 years ago from USA

I always wanted to try stained glass. Your beautiful work is really inspiring! This is a beautifully designed hub with excellent photographs and useful information. Voted up all the way and shared.


GoodLady profile image

GoodLady 4 years ago from Rome, Italy

Amazing to learn that it's an accessible art form. Until I read your hub I imagined it completely impossible to do. I've always loved stained glass - in fact I'll be strolling round the Duomo of Milan next week and loving the beautiful stained glass windows all way round. I've always secretly dreamed of working with it too and now it seems it is possible. THANK YOU!


Janis Goad profile image

Janis Goad 4 years ago

In my grandmother's house there was a small window with stained glass, and I would sit on the stairs and love the amber and azure light that came through and lay in pools on the steps. Never thought of making one myself--now I see it is feasible, with these directions. Beautiful!!


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Judi, Thank you. I wish I had more time to put into my stained glass but seem to be so busy with other things these days.


Judi Bee profile image

Judi Bee 4 years ago from UK

Love that first piece! Another thing to add to the growing list of "stuff I really would like to do when I've got time"! I'm pinning it so that I can find it when the time finally arrives.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

sen.sush, ishwaryaa's glass painting hub was beautiful. Thank you so much. It is a fun hobby that I wish I had more time to do :)


sen.sush23 profile image

sen.sush23 4 years ago from Kolkata, India

Susan, after reading ishwaryaa's hub and being directed by her I found this hub of yours. I don't know how I missed this earlier. Beautiful hub, the beveled flower particularly got me really excited. I wish I could do something like that. Voted up. Thanks to both the author and the one who lead me to this hub. :)


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

ishwaryaa, Thank you, I appreciate the link and will look for your upcoming hub.


ishwaryaa22 profile image

ishwaryaa22 4 years ago from Chennai, India

I am working on a hub related to this craft. I seek your permission to grant me the honor of linking your amazing hub to my hub. I am inspired by this amazing hub of yours.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

shea, With some of my pieces I solder a wire around the entire piece to give it extra stability. Most of the time the solder works fine all by itself. Lead cane is another option that I use when doing window transoms.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

barbergirl, You'd probably really enjoy doing this. I'd thought of making pieces to sell but then I end up using them as gifts or I like them so much I hate to give them up :)


shea duane profile image

shea duane 4 years ago from new jersey

I love this hub... what scares me it bracing / framing the pieces.


barbergirl28 profile image

barbergirl28 4 years ago from Hemet, Ca

I am such a crafty person but I like doing the unique stuff... and I often thought about trying the stained glass... maybe this was just the push I needed! :)


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Lesley, Thank you. I'm sure you'd love doing stained glass. If you ever have any questions please ask.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

ishwaryaa, Thank you so much. Glass painting looks like it would be fun too.


Movie Master profile image

Movie Master 4 years ago from United Kingdom

Hi Susan, your stained glass work is beautiful, I especially love the beveled flower.

Thank you for the instructions, it's the sort of thing I would like to have a go at!

Voting up


ishwaryaa22 profile image

ishwaryaa22 4 years ago from Chennai, India

Your glass artwork is very beautiful, especially the beveled flower! The instructions and tips listed by you are very helpful. I always wanted to do some glass painting and I am inspired by this engaging hub of yours. Well-done!

Thanks for SHARING. Useful & Awesome. Voted up.


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

drbj, Thank you, and you know what I want to be just like you when and if I ever grow up :)


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Angela, I've not done a stained glass piece in awhile now and I really do miss it. B ut I do plan on doing a hub with step by step instructions. Are you referring to bubbles while soldering the glass?


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

RH, Not that difficult if you have a good cutter. Thanks, Al liked the piece but it has yet to go into the garage :)


drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

Hi, Susan. I do admire your stained glass artistry, talent and fortitude. I want to be like you when I grow up. Oh, wait, it's too late. I've already been there and done that.


angela_michelle profile image

angela_michelle 4 years ago from United States

I did stainglass when I was little, the hardest part for me was not have little bubbles. I would think I got them all and alas, there would be another one. Now I would like you to write a hub about how to make stained glass. :) If you haven't already. I actually should doublecheck.


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 4 years ago from St. Louis, MO

Fabulous hub! I love stained glass and my parents have made several things. I want to try it so bad - I keep going to the craft store and looking at kits but I'm worried it is hard. Is it very hard to cut the glass pieces? I've seen the tools - but idk? It doesn't look easy. The glass is gorgeous though.

I love all the stuff you made! The Chevy sign is so clever!! Did Al love it?


Just Ask Susan profile image

Just Ask Susan 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada Author

Rochelle, SilverGenes and Ruby, Thank all so much. Appreciate the lovely comments.


always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

I love stained glass. I have two pictures, one is a blue bird and one is apples. I would love to have a stained glass door. It would be nice to make something. You are so talented. Thank you..Pushed all the buttons..


SilverGenes 4 years ago

Great hub, Susan! It's so much fun to see what talented people are creating - that must look gorgeous in the kitchen cabinet. Voted UP!


Rochelle Frank profile image

Rochelle Frank 4 years ago from California Gold Country

I like all of the pieces. You did a nice job on all of them, and a great job on the hub.

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