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Updated Jan 2013
Copyright (c) 2013 South London Stained Glass



Commissioning stained glass

If you are thinking about a stained glass project, do get in touch. We are happy to have preliminary discussions with no commitment or cost on your part, and to work face to face, or electronically in the early stages. Email or phone us, Some of our clients are very clear about what they would like and other just know they would like some stained glass!

To give you a rough idea of costs we need photographs and approximate sizes of the openings where the glass is to be fitted and some ideas about how you want it to look.  If there are patterns in any of out galleries that you like, let us have the names.

To make a new design proposal we usually need to visit the site and have a more detailed discussion about just what you want.  We will always provide a written estimate and drawing of the proposed new stained glass before we ask for a deposit.

We will work with you to create what you are looking for, we can make our own design proposals, and we can offer a variety of sources for design ideas. Sometimes clients want to replicate what may have been in place earlier in the life of their home - sources for these designs can come from neighbouring houses, architectural sources, or generated from knowledge of the era and style of the building. Others want some thing radically different. There can be the opportunity to personalise the design, inserting elements of particular significance to the owners.

The medium of lead and glass has as many constraints as it does opportunities - and the unique appearance of a traditionally made panel (not necessarily to a traditional design) comes from managing these constraints and opportunities creatively. Stained glass in the home is much more common in the US and Germany than in the UK - lets redress the balance! The medium provides a huge range of colour, texture, opacity and reflections depending on the glasses chosen. The opportunity to alter the matrix in which the glass is held can vary the boundaries with striking effects.
 
We need to understand what you are looking for - and develop and agree a short design brief, which will take account of your ideas, the context of the panel - in terms of the aesthetics and the practicalities of ensuring the design can be securely made and mounted. From this we will prepare a visual and select glass samples. Once this is agreed we will submit a formal quotation, and request a deposit before proceeding further.

Its important to note the panel will look very different looking in (from outside), to looking out (from inside) , depending on the light source. Coloured glass in panels mounted internally - that is not as windows to the outside - can look very different (generally a lot darker) because of the lack of direct light, to the same glass in a window in the sun.

Installation

Needs to be taken into account at the design stage. Leaded glass panels are surprisingly heavy - and the frame - or whatever - into which they will be installed has to be adequate. Larger designs are usually assembled from a number of linked panels. We can install, or liaise with your glazier, builder or contractor.

Strength and Security

In a contest with a conventional piece of glass a leaded panel is likely to suffer less damage in an impact - it is more flexible - the lead will absorb impacts and the cement adheres strongly to glass and lead. By the same token the weight and flexibility of the panel mean that unless it is well supported it will sag and bow - even quite small panels have this tendency. To overcome this, and generally add strength, external and internal reinforcement may be used.

Its common, and probably good practice for security (although it can detract from the appearance of the panel) to install behind a sheet of laminated (or maybe toughened) glass. Adding to existing glazing in this way may minimise disruption and installation cost, although as mentioned above the impact of the external appearance is lost somewhat.


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