Have Fun Making 3D-Flowers
With Stained Glass



Making 3D-flowers out of stained glass is a fun way to use up your scraps. It's also a good way to get your creative juices flowing.

3D stained glass flowers



What I'm showing you here are the bare bones basics, just a way to get to get you started. Some of the techniques are fairly unconventional, especially making the stained glass sunflower. Experiment with different materials and techniques. Make some very big 3D-flowers rather than the small ones shown here. There are no set rules to follow. The most important thing to remember is..... HAVE FUN!

All of the stems are made from brass tubes or rods (it doesn't matter which).

The solder around the petals of the cosmos, poppies and pansies is painted with Color Magic, in a color to match the glass. Most stained glass shops sell Color Magic Paint.

The stems of these stained glass 3D-flowers have all been painted with green Color Magic. They could also be wrapped with green floral tape which you can buy at any craft store.

The stamen in the poppies were made with stringers that I pulled in a torch flame. They are attached to the flowers with clear silicone. If you don't have a torch, you can buy glass stringers at any stained glass shop that sells hot glass supplies.

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Double click on all pictures to enlarge.



3D-flowers

Here is the pattern sheet for all of the 3D-flowers in this series. Double click on it to open it in Adobe Reader. Enlarge it to 100%, in Adobe Reader, and it will print out to the correct size. There is one mistake on the pattern...you should cut 8 not 6 Cosmos petals.










Pansy



These are the easiest stained glass 3D-flowers to construct.

Cut and foil all 5 pieces. Edge bead each individual piece.

Use the photographs as your construction guide.

pansy layers back view

pansy layers front view



Layer the pieces as shown in the picture, tack soldering as you go to hold them in place. They will only be held together at the center points, so make sure you have a secure solder joint. Solder the stem (brass rod) to the back of these 3D-flowers.

Wash and dry the flower, then paint the edges of each petal with a shade of Color Magic that will match your glass. Put yellow Color Magic on the solder in the center of the flower. Paint the stem green.


Poppy



Poppies



In my opinion, these are the prettiest 3D-flowers.

Using the pattern piece, cut 3 pieces with the pattern facing up, and 3 with it facing down. Foil all 6 pieces. You will use one of each for each petal of these 3D-flowers.

Use the photographs as your construction guide.

poppy looking at the underside

poppy looking at the inside



Find something to use as a jig, that will hold two pieces together at about a 120 degree angle. I stood my pieces up on either side of a ball point pen (laying flat on the table) and supported the bottom edges of the glass with masking tape. Solder the joint inside and outside. What you are trying to accomplish is to solder the 2 pieces together at an angle where they join (see the photograph). Finish the edges of each petal with bead soldering.

Set the three finished petals, upside down, on the table so that the bottom edge of all 3 petal come together in the middle. You will need to use masking tape to hold them together. Hold the brass rod (stem) in the middle where the 3 pieces touch and solder the 3 petals and the rod in place. Solder the petals together where they touch on the sides, which will only be a small spot on each petal.

Clean the flowers and paint the edges with Color Magic in a color that matches the glass. Paint the stem green.

You can put stamen in the flowers by making stringers with a bead making torch. You can also buy ready made stringers at any stained glass store that sells hot glass supplies. Glue the stamen in place with clear silicone. When the silicone dries, paint it (using Color Magic Paint) the same color as the stringers.




Cosmo



Cut and foil 8 petals. (I know the pattern says 6...my mistake!) Bead solder the edges.

Use small nuggets for the center of these 3-D flowers flowers. Rough up the edges of the nuggets on your grinder, clean them with alcohol and foil with a narrow (1/8") foil. Lay the nugget, face up on your work bench.

cosmos back view

cosmos front view



Lay out the petals around the nugget to make sure they will fit and make any adjustments necessary. Solder the petals onto the nugget, one at a time, lifting the ends of some so that they are not all laying flat on the workbench.

Turn the flower over and solder the back side. Bend the copper rod at the angle shown on the pattern sheet and solder it to the flower.

Clean the flower and paint as described above in the Poppy instructions.




Sunflower



Sunflowers



These 3D-flowers are the most difficult, of the 4, to make.

Use large nuggets for the centers. Rough up the edges of the nuggets, clean them with alcohol and foil with 1/4 inch foil.

Cut 20 to 30 pieces for each flower. Turn the pattern upside down for some of the pieces so that the tips aren't all pointing in the same direction on the finished flower.

I heated some of the pieces with my torch until the tips twisted just a bit. They were then placed in a fire blanket until they cooled. Unfortunately, many of them fractured as soon as I got them out of the flame. I use a lot of glass to make 6 sunflowers! It would be much easier to slump them in a kiln. However, the flowers could look nice with all straight pieces, so you can make them without using a torch or kiln.

Wrap just the wide end of each petal with foil. The rest of the glass is not foiled. Use a small piece of foil and cover the bottom edge, running the foil from front to back, so that it covers the bottom edge of the glass.

Then wrap another piece of foil around the bottom end of the petal (like bandaging a finger tip)so that it covers the front, back and both side edges. Use 1/4 inch foil for this. Trim off any foil that might be sticking out from the first piece you put on. You will now have a petal that has no foil on it except for the lower part. This is what will attach the petals of these 3D-flowers to the nugget.

sunflower front view

sunflower back view



Lay the nugget face up on your workbench. The petals will be attached in 2 layers. Attach the back layer first using the technique described for the cosmos. Attach the front layer the same way, staggering the petals so that the second layer of petals lays between the petals of the bottom layer.

The back petals will be attached at the back edge of the nugget and the front petals will be attached at the front edge of the nugget.

Solder front and back with a thick bead of solder. Attach the stem on the back. You can do decorative soldering around the nugget to give the appearance of a real sunflower center.

Wash well and paint or patina the solder around the nugget.

Note: Some of the petals might come loose in the foil, since they aren't secured in with foil all around. If any are loose, just pull them out of the foil, put some glue (ie: E 6000) in the foil and push the glass back in place. Once glued in, you will have these 3D-flowers forever!





Leaves



Back side of leaves

Front side of leaves



Here are pictures of the leaves. They are separate (not soldered to the flowers) and can be stuck anywhere. The flowers are in small clay pots filled with floral foam. The leaves are stuck randomly, where ever they look right.



Flower Cart



Flowers For Sale



I originally made these 3D-flowers as part of a creation for a contest.

Everyone was given the same bits and pieces and were told to create something using them in the design. It really challenged the imagination. I was amazed to see how many different pieces could be designed and constructed, incorporating 12 3/4" bevels, 6 "tortoise" jewels, and 2 castings into each design.


If you are having problems making 3D-flowers and have a question you want answered, click here to ask your question.

If you prefer to send me a private email you can contact me Here.



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This page was last updated on January 31, 2013






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