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Faux Stained Glass, Art Nouveau Style

'Faux Stained Glass, Art Nouveau Style' by Neil Burley
During the art and design course I finished in June, I had to study the Art Nouveau period, its influences and some of the art created that defined the style. When trying to decide what to make for this month's theme, I kept coming back to the fantastic stylised botanicals, the classic whiplash shapes and the lavish stained glass. What project would be better to demonstrate the versatility of embossing powders?

I took a 6x6" deep frame (from The Range), checked it had glass in rather than acrylic, and set to work. I resized a suitable picture from the internet to fit the 6x6" aperture and then stuck the glass sheet from the frame over it with masking tape to hold it steady. Wipe down the glass with isopropanol (rubbing alcohol) to make it squeaky clean - repeat as required to remove fingerprints as you go. Then I traced the outline with 3mm self-adhesive lead, sticking down and burnishing well and overlapping 'threads' so it looks like I soldered the joins.

For the green, I coloured the areas in with a WOW! Embossing Pen, covered with WOW! Primary Evergreen and heat set, being careful to set the glass down on a heat proof, non-conductive surface. The glass remains hot for a long time after you've finished using the heat gun - take care not to burn yourself! I repeated this three times to get an even layer.

For the purple flowers I used a new technique I'm experimenting with - not quite ready to share it, but it was a lot quicker and easier than the colour in and sprinkle technique above. I used the WOW! Primary Indigo. All of the WOW! primary colours are perfect for this technique as they have a clear base making them translucent. Avoid the opaque primaries which have a white base.

Scrape back any 'smudges' of set embossing powder from the leaded areas with a sharp knife. Burnish again to remove any knife marks. I discovered that embossing powder wipes away easily from the glass when rubbed with industrial strength isopropanol (rubbing alcohol) on a piece of kitchen paper, perfect for the inevitable stray flecks. Finally wipe down both sides with a damp cloth to remove any last residues.

I assembled the frame back together, leaving off the back so that the light can come through. I took the photo with the frame lying on a light box (and a tissue over the flash so that it diffused a bit!) so that you can see the full effect. The embossing powders have a great grainy effect, especially the indigo which tends to clump when overheated on a non-porous surface.

[Total make time: approx. 5-6 hours]

WOW! Shopping List
   WOW! Primary Evergreen Regular
   WOW! Primary Indigo Regular
   WOW! Embossing Pen
   WOW! Heat gun


  1. Wow - absolutely stonkingly marvellous! I've been thinking about using some old faux glass panels I've had for a long time - guess I'm going to be playing a little bit with my wow powders and other supplies, TFS Karen x

  2. Thank you ladies :)
    Much appreciated. Neil x

  3. Love the colours, the motive and the execution. Good job Neil!!!


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