Stained glass lamps are a spectacular way to add colour and light into your room without the difficulty of electrical wiring.
Have you always wanted to make a stained glass lamp before but never felt confident enough?
This ingenious idea from one of my online students Susan Gregory is the answer for you…
…to buy a simple lamp and modify the shade frame to fit stained glass into it.
Here are the before and after photos, side by side:
This solution does away with all the hassle of fixtures and fittings that normally come with stained glass lamp bases.
Stained Glass Lamp Base Instructions
1. Purchase the lamp
You can buy the one Susan used on Amazon here (paid link, thanks 🙂 )
2. Measure the 4 sides and design your stained glass pattern to fit
Inspiration for Susan’s lamp design came from a pattern in “120 Traditional Stained Glass Patterns” by Ed Sibbert, Jr. (see photo above)
You can see the book here on Amazon (paid link)
3. Construct the 4 individual stained glass side panels
Use zinc came at the top and bottom.
Be sure to use wider foil for the vertical edges to prevent the foil working loose during assembly.
4. Modify the lamp base (see photo above)
Remove the ring from the lamp shade
Cut out the corners
Bend the ring to fit the shade
Sand away the paint to reveal the metal underneath
5. Assemble by soldering the bottom zinc came to the lamp base
Luckily the metal used takes solder well and makes a very strong bond.
That’s all you have to do to create this gorgeous modern stained glass lamp.
If you give it a try, send me your finished lamps and I’ll add the to the page 🙂
Using Agates in Stained Glass Lamps
Here’s a great video on using agates in stained glass lamps.
Stained Glass Lamp Bases – Unique Bamboo Idea
Stained glass lamp bases made from bamboo are a new one on me! The combination is stunning. The colourful stained glass together with the bamboo is truly unique.
I have to confess it’s not my idea. I was sent an image by an Everything Stained Glass visitor and had to share it with you.
If you’ve always wanted to make stained glass lamps but have never tried, I can recommend this beginner’s book by Michael Johnstone (paid link). It comes with a selection of full-size patterns and lots of photos illustrating the processes one by one.
Bamboo Stained Glass Lamp Bases
Here is Floor van Asten’s explanation of how he makes them:
“I happened to buy some bamboo for my little pond and got the idea to combine bamboo and stained glass.
The idea was quite simple. To make some holes in the bamboo, put stained glass in and fix some LED lights behind it.
I found some cheap LED lights and found them easy to install.
This piece of bamboo contained 3 compartments and I decided to make an opening in each part. I had to make a connection between the inner compartments by making holes between the separate parts.
I still had some spare glass which I copper foiled. After soldering it together I glued it on to the bamboo. The result you can see on picture Number 1.
More Experimenting With The Stained Glass Lamp Bases
I found I enjoyed creating stained glass lamps the most. So I continued testing out my ideas with bamboo and stained glass.
Here are my next two experimental lamps. (Numbers 2 and 3)
For these two lamps I did not use glue to fix the stained glass to the bamboo. I used copper foil on the edges of the bamboo instead.
There are still problems. Gluing it is not exactly the right thing to do because it tends to unstick when you heat it with the soldering iron!
I’m working at finding another solution for that in the future.
I still have lots to discover and to perfect. I hope it will be a long lasting source of creating beautiful and precious objects.”
The Association of Stained Glass Lamp Artists is the MOST fantastic collection of advice and tips about making stained glass lamps that I’ve found. You can learn things about soldering, stained glass lamp bases, cutting and all sorts. A gem.
Learn how to solder a stained glass beaded seam here
4 thoughts on “Stained Glass Lamp Bases and Lamp Ideas”
How do you get the correct light bulb for Stained Glass lamps? I don’t want to see the…. Bulb shining through even though the glass is cathedral.
I’m not aware of any bulbs that don’t show through transparent cathedral glass Donna, sorry. It’s usually recommended to use glass with a level of opacity for lamps.
Sorry I can’t be more help, and if anyone knows different, share here 🙂
Great blog. I was planning t make one but didn’t know that the steps are so simple. Can you please make a blog how can we DIY stained glass
Thanks Sahana. There are lots of free tutorials on my site on how to make stained glass here: https://everythingstainedglass.com/how-to-make-stained-glass
I hope you find something to help you.