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Stained Glass Panels For Your Home

Updated on August 23, 2015

The oldest stained glass windows in the world decorate Augsberg Cathedral in Bavaria. At a time when many parishioners couldn’t read, stained glass panels were placed in churches to illustrate important religious and spiritual themes. The tradition stands today, and most people when they think of stained glass, still think of churches, but stained glass can make a beautiful statement in your home.  There is no better way to hide an ugly view than with a beautiful stained glass panel.

Stained glass panels are available in a multitude of colors and styles from Victorian to contemporary, and if you don’t find any pre-made windows to your liking there are plenty of artists our there who can do custom work for you. You could even immortalize your great aunt Edna or a favorite childhood pet. Custom windows have the added advantage of being made to size so you can be sure it will fit the intended space.

Your stained glass panel will be either leaded or copper foiled. The two terms refer to different methods of construction. One uses lead came to hold the pieces of colored glass together, and the other uses copper foil. Leaded stained glass is traditional while the copper foil technique was developed by L.C. Tiffany at the turn of the century. Both methods are durable, but the copper foil technique allows for smaller more intricate designs. Either is suitable for a decorative panel. They also develop different patinas as they age, some people prefer the look of one over the other.

You may not be ready to commit to a stained glass window yet, but you can still get this look in your home with a less permanent option. You can always buy a stained glass panel to hang in front of your window. You’ll get the same inspiring effect when the light shines through, and you wont have to hire a professional to install it. Or, consider investing in a beautiful stained glass accessory for your home. Fireplace screens, table lamps, and hanging light fixtures are a couple of options. Stained glass film is an inexpensive alternative to stained glass. Stained glass film is beautiful on a glass shower door.

Whatever type of stained glass you choose, you’ll find that it needs periodic care and cleaning like the rest of your windows or accessories, but don’t reach for the windex just yet. Cleaners that contain ammonia should never be used to for stained glass. The Stained Glass Association of American recommends distilled water for this job. Use a damp cloth to lightly wipe the glass. Never saturate the cloth or spray the glass as this will allow water to seep into the seems of your window. Wax will help preserve the finish and keep your piece looking lustrous longer. There are products specially formulated for this job, but paste car wax will work just as well as any of them. Just apply the wax with a soft cloth and gently buff it off. These simple cleaning methods will keep your piece beautiful for many years to come.

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