• Crafty Beggars In The House

    Stephen Wisdom

    Stephen Wisdom

    I was first introduced to stained glass, during a building job when I came across a broken stained glass door panel at a customer’s house.

    I was intrigued by the colourful designs and the technique. I had fixed and replaced glass panels and windows before but never anything like that. I had the opportunity to learn, when a few months later I received a gift voucher for a beginner’s course in stained glass.

    I enjoyed it so much it became a hobby first and then a bit of an obsession.

    It’s been about 5/6 years since I started and it took me this long to perfect my technique. Usually, people don’t realise the different stages this craft entails and how much time and patience is involved in cutting glass and putting it all together; if you want to make something different you start by drawing your design on paper and that itself can take time.

    I came up with the idea of a mobile workshop because I wanted to make stained glass more available to people and this could give me the opportunity to travel to towns and set up a workshop anywhere.

    I’ve been based at the Stepney City Farm for the past year but I built the whole set up myself so that everything can be assembled and dismantled easily and then stored away.

    It’s not easy juggling my building work with holding regular workshops twice a month. It means having hardly any days off or rest, but it’s worth it because teaching stained glass is something I enjoy very much.

    My panels and sun-catchers are all made with fun in mind. I’m a big kid and enjoy animation, colours and cult classics so my selection includes: Minions, Snoopy, Kermit the Frog, Superheroes logos and more.

    My favourite piece is Elmer the Elephant, which is made using the Tiffany technique. It’s a small sun-catcher, made out of about 60 pieces and therefore it’s harder to make, it’s got tons of colours and the effect on a wall turns out amazing.

    I made a few Tiffany style lamps but I’ve recently progressed onto my own design and created the Cube Lamp.

    They are made in the stained glass technique rather than Tiffany’s so they turn out much sturdy and strong.

    I decided on a more modern, fun and colourful approach, as I wanted to create something different from the traditional standing lamp.

    I hope to get people to see that the art of stained glass doesn’t have to be old fashioned or traditional-looking but fun, colourful and approachable.

    Website: www.coatofglass.london

    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/coatofglass/

    Twitter: https://twitter.com/CoatofGlass

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/coatofglass/

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