I’ve been working on a lil’ something, that quite honestly, has been the reason for much of my aggravation the past few days. It’s been trial and error, and let me tell you, I can say with certainty what DID NOT work for me!
Aside from our dining room, our office is the first room you see upon entering our house. The problem? We have French doors and the office is usually a crap mess. There’s just no nice way to say it. The doors are great and allow for lots of light, but between the constant kiddie fingerprints and the junk on my desk, I hated having them. I’d bought a curtain over a year ago and when I tested it, I didn’t care much for the look and I found it really didn’t let enough light in. I used one of those window cling films that you apply with water and a squeegee on our front door sidelights, but the thought of cutting all of those little rectangles out for every pane of glass in the French doors didn’t sound like much fun. As I discovered, the panes were all slightly off on size.
I’d found this pretty picture of craftsman style windows with lovely little cris crosses all over that I was totally smitten with. I really wanted to try and mimic the look. (Photo courtesy of thehandwerkshop.blogspot.com )
I wanted to test out mod podge on glass since I had it on hand and figured it wasn’t a commitment. If I hated it, I could just scrape it off. I taped more than half the door and then decided, perhaps rather then continuing, it might be a good idea to test out the mod podge to see how it would look. Ummmm yeah, that’s such a lie. I totally ran out of tape. That was the ONLY reason I took the time to test out how the MP would perform. It’s safe to say, running out of tape was a good thing. Test stuff out before you commit to a project y’all! Mod Podge on my french doors was a flop. It was not cute AT ALL. It lacked the texture I was hoping for. If I’m being totally honest, I actually had a fleeting thought that I might just keep the tape up since I really liked the pattern. That’s when the idea of pin striping hit!
Still wanting a craftsman style look, I decided I’d try pin striping. Yeah, another fail and and I didn’t even get past the taping before I realized I hated it. At least this mistake didn’t take up too much of my time.
Completely annoyed, I took a trip to Michael’s in search of the perfect solution. I’d done those painted, stained glass sun catchers as a kid and thought for sure Michael’s would come to the rescue with some sort of solution. DIY stained glass paint shouldn’t be too hard to find right? Well, my local store didn’t have anything, however the woman I chatted with mentioned Gallery Glass.
She said that the Michael’s in a neighboring town might carry it. I ran to the car, called them and sure enough they had it! I drove over, picked out a few bottles along with some self adhesive leading and liquid leading. Now, I didn’t take pictures of this, however I did grab 2 large bottles of what I thought were both crystal clear. Ummmm, no. How you ask, did I discover this?? After 3 hours, my “crystal clear” hadn’t dried…I touched it and it was in fact dry, but after checking the bottle, I found it was a large bottle of Snow White that I’d applied, not crystal clear. Obviously someone put it into the wrong slot at the store. It was super easy to remove and it peeled away in one sheet like a much more durable version of Saran Wrap. Lesson? Check your bottles!
I decided to fudge my way through this project since I couldn’t really find much info on how to use the stuff. After some trial and error, this is what I found worked best. I squeezed the gallery glass directly to the pane around the perimeter first, avoiding the wood. I swirled it around in the center area. This stuff is drippy y’all, so instead of painting around the sides (which I did at first, but because it needed to be applied pretty thick, it dripped.ALOT!) I got it into the edge by pushing it into the sides which seemed to do the trick and prevented drips.
The next part looks very much like finger painting and that’s more or less what it was. I tried stippling and used various other tools to get the look I wanted to no avail. I swirled my finger around the perimeter to lose the stippled look that the paint brush left. I was left with a much softer, more circular pattern. I swirled the paint around the middle and then with 3 fingers, I pounced the entire pane to achieve a ripple effect.
Applied too thinly as shown in the upper left corner of the left hand picture, this feathered look is what happens. Not quite what I wanted, but it would be really pretty for some sort of winter project.
Here’s a close up of the feathered look I didn’t want on the left and the more fluid, water-like look I was after. See the difference?
I learned that the key to achieving a rippled effect is applying the gallery glass generously.
I was originally going to use the leading on every piece of glass, but I was trying to keep costs and the time I spent on this project to a minimum, so I decided to use it on the middle panes only. I used precut self adhesive leading to make a very basic easy inlaid look. Truth be told, I didn’t measure anything for this part. I just went with it. Embracing imperfection yet again!
Here’s a close up of the self adhesive leading. It was easy to work with. I simply cut it with a straight edge razor.
After the leading was applied, I applied a small bead of liquid leading at all the joints to give it a more authentic look.
I’m not sure where I’m going to use the Ruby red yet, so for now I’m living with my faux DIY stained glass as is. Here are my new doors!
This is a photo of the doors from INSIDE the office, so not the side that the gallery Glass was used on.
I’d love to hear your thoughts, so make sure to leave me a message below. Please feel free to Pin and share too! As always, if you have any questions, let me know! I’m happy to help!
I’ve gotten a bunch of questions so I thought I’d address them here in case y’all have the same ones.
1. Did you apply the Gallery Glass to the inside or outside of the doors?
I applied mine to the side facing my hallway, so NOT inside the office. I did this in case anyone decided to reach out and touch the “glass”. I wanted the texture to be on the side most people would feel. If I was doing side lights on a front door or a sliding glass door, I would do the interior side, not the side directly exposed to the elements.
2. What’s it look like from the side that doesn’t have the gallery glass on it?
Here’s a close up…
3. Can I use this on my shower door?
I don’t know that it’s suggested for areas that are really humid. My bathroom doesn’t get tons of moisture so I’m gonna test it out on ours and repost back.
4. How many bottles did you use?
It took me 2 large bottles of crystal clear and one small (that whole trial and error thang!). If I’ve done my job and worked out the kinks, two large bottles and a small bottle of liquid leading should be plenty. For half door or full door side lights, one bottle should work.
5. Can you clean them?
Yes, you can. I did a windex text for y’all and this is what happened. The gallery glass became milky/cloudy in the area where I sprayed the windex. I wiped it away and after after 30 seconds, it reverted back to clear. I’ll stick to wiping them down with water on a microfiber towel as needed.