Stained glass film: what is it, where new technologies are used


2023-07-05 11:01:22




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Self-adhesive transparent stained glass film

Perhaps anyone will agree that stained glass windows will look very impressive in a modern apartment. However, for all its beauty and sophistication, this kind of decoration at its price immediately scares away even a person with average income. Meanwhile, thanks to modern technologies, there is an alternative solution that can decorate any apartment with a real masterpiece - stained glass film.

The classical technique used in the creation of world-famous masterpieces of stained glass art is imitated by a film stained glass so skillfully that it is absolutely impossible to detect the difference at first glance. This is the first advantage of this method. And the second is an acceptable price, compared to the cost of a real stained glass window, combined with a guarantee of high quality.

Stained glass film, translucent oracal are used for full or partial pasting. They are also used in plotter cutting for different types of purposes, each of which requires specific characteristics from the material. Let's figure out what materials are used and why. This will help you navigate and choose the ones that best meet the goals of your project.

Each stained glass composition begins with a sketch developed by the artist. Based on the sketch, a ready-made scheme with a color scheme of the composition is created, which is transferred to a glass or mirror surface. Stained glass film is applied to this surface by a master who constantly checks his actions with the scheme and removes excess film. Often, the drawing on both sides of the glass is complemented by a contour of lead tape, imitating the soldered seam used in classical stained glass windows (the so-called broach). This makes the film stained glass even more indistinguishable from the real one - the prefabricated one.

Stained glass filmSuch decorative elements can be decorated with windows, niches, doors, partitions, furniture facades, suspended ceilings. Even uneven and rounded surfaces are subject to the method, which makes the interior more exotic. In all cases, a self-adhesive transparent stained glass film is used, matte or opaque, with or without a pattern, imitating both a full-fledged composition and its individual elements.


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There is still an opinion that film stained glass windows should not be made, because they will become unusable faster than interior decorations. This opinion is completely erroneous. The stained glass film on the windows is made of high-quality polyester, protected from the effects of ultraviolet radiation and high humidity, so it is not threatened with fading, peeling or shrinking. And since the film stained glass covers a single sheet of glass, its strength is the same as that of the "windowless" glass. At the same time, they weigh the same, since the thin film does not add weight to the glass.

Stained glass film on windowsIn addition to the aesthetic, the stained glass film performs another function: it increases the strength of the glass base on which it is glued. If it breaks, the fragments will be held in place. If tempered or acrylic glass is used for stained glass, its strength will increase by an order of magnitude.

The substance used in the self-adhesive film quickly binds the substrate to the surface. And so tightly that the film material is almost impossible to peel off from the glass. If the elements of the stained-glass pattern are still separated, do not grieve. Competent specialists will always be able to quickly and efficiently carry out repairs at home: they will find the film of the right shade and restore the original drawing.

Film stained glass windows perfectly harmonize with any interior: living room, hallway, kitchen, study, nursery. They are durable and reliable, easy to install, and easy to care for. Stained glass film will allow you to choose any pattern for execution. It's just a pity that it will please you for a relatively short time, 10-15 years. What to do - the classic stained glass is much more durable.

Technology Film Stained glass

To create a stained glass window using this technology, ordinary glass, colored self-adhesive film, lead tape and several auxiliary tools are enough.

Thanks to the use of modern technologies, the creation of stained glass windows has become an art accessible to everyone.

Whether it is a window or a glass facade of furniture, the installation of stained glass will completely change the character of the room. Windows decorated with a simple lead lattice are also becoming increasingly popular.For such decoration, a colored self-adhesive film is no longer required. The lead tape itself and several tools, such as a clamp and a knife for cutting lead, are enough. Both lead tape and self-adhesive film are successfully used all over the world and in a wide variety of climatic conditions.

Stained glass film It is polyester of the highest quality, protected by several layers of UV filters that protect the color from fading.

  • Thanks to this protection, the film does not shrink and is resistant to moisture and solar radiation.
  • Patterns can be applied to glasses of atypical sizes - from large window surfaces to small furniture panes.
  • Each new stained glass window can be created using a different color of lead tape.
  • One pattern has a variety of application possibilities.

Cut off the appropriate amount of color film so that it covers the pattern. We remove the bottom paper and, holding the edges, spray clean, preferably distilled water on the adhesive side. This allows you to lay the film well without having to tear it off in case of an error.

We apply the cut piece of film to the pattern.

With a special rubber roller or a special wringer, we remove excess water from under the film.

Exactly according to the pattern, we cut off and remove excess pieces of colored film.

When applying lead, its stretching should be avoided. We attach the tape with a strong uniform pressing. It is not recommended to connect crisscrossing tapes at the joint. After finishing the work, no loose ends should be visible. The lead covering the outer edges of the pattern covered by the film should be applied so that half covers the film and half the glass.

After covering the entire pattern, we press the lead tape with a rubber roller.

All the edges of the film and the joints of the lead tape are compressed with a clamp.

To simulate the effect of a classic stained glass window, lead tape must be applied on both sides of the glass.

Creating a stained glass window with bevels (facets)

  • Under the glass we place a stained glass template. Before gluing bevels, the glass surface should be thoroughly drained.
  • The approximate pattern will consist of four square elements. We fill the surface with UV glue and apply one of the four elements of the pattern.
  • The bevel (on the underside) must be thoroughly cleaned of fingerprints and stripes before gluing. Carefully put it in place with the applied glue. Carefully pressing the bevel from above, we remove excess glue and air bubbles from under it with circumferential movements.
  • When the bevel is properly deposited and no dirt and air bubbles are visible, you can start hardening the glue with a UV lamp. It should be remembered that it is no longer possible to remove the glued bevel. The solidification time is about 15 seconds.
  • With a sharp knife, we cut off the excess glue that has flowed out from under the bevel and hardened with UV rays. We remove the cut off excess.
  • The surface in this place is cleaned with an aerosol to remove UV glue. With each next element we do the same as in the previous case.
  • After gluing all the elements of the pattern, we degrease the glass surface again and proceed to finishing the stained glass with lead tape. In the case of patterns with bevels, it is best recommended to use a tape with a width of 6 mm.
  • Carefully glue the tape between the bevels so that it covers the edges of the bevels adjacent to each other.
  • The glued lead is pressed against the surface of the glass with a rubber roller.
    The edges of the tape are pressed with the sharp end of the clamp.
  • All connections of the lead tape are crimped so that no gaps between the superimposed tapes are visible.
  • If you plan to glue lead tape on both sides of the stained glass window, then you should first glue all the necessary tape on one side, and only then on the other. Only after completing the pattern on the underside of the glass can you start gluing the bevels on the other side of the glass.
  • If the stained glass window is made using colored stained glass films and bevels, then you should first make a stained glass window from a film and tape on the underside of the glass, and then go to gluing the bevels on the other side.

Materials and tools for creating stained glass windows using film stained glass technology

Self-adhesive lead tape

  • A tape with a self-adhesive bottom, consisting of at least 99% pure lead. It can be applied to any clean and dry glass surface.
  • It is suitable for use both indoors and outdoors and has a 10-year warranty.
  • Suitable for decorating construction and furniture glass, as well as door panels and windows.
  • Ribbons can occur in various colors: natural blue, old gold, brass, white, black, graphite, platinum, natural.
  • Self-adhesive lead tape is designed for use on external and internal smooth glass surfaces. Thanks to its use, it is possible to make a stained glass window without the need to cut off the glass and solder the joints.
  • Lead tape is ideally used in products with double glass, according to the norm B.S.5713, for the product of furniture panels, glass door panels or for use in existing windows.

Color textured film

  • Textured films are made manually by adding various dyes to the base color. Taking into account this manufacturing technique, two sheets of film will never be identical.

Bevels (facets)

  • There are also facetted glass elements (BEVELS).
  • They are made of 5 mm flat glass with a facetted edge 1.5 mm thick.
  • The thin outer edge allows you to perfectly connect the bevels with lead tape and colored self-adhesive film.
  • The use of facetted glass in combination with lead tape and colored films gives wonderful effects, enriched also by three-dimensional.
  • Bevels are glued onto individual sheets of glass using glue reinforced with UV rays.
  • With proper use of glue and following the instructions regarding the method of gluing, a product of the highest degree of strength is obtained.
    Bevels are used on the outside of the outer glass. This means that the bevels should always be outside the room in the case of glass doors or windows.
  • The color can be given to the bevels with the help of a sticker of stained glass films on the back of the base of the glass.

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Alin Trodden - author of the article, editor
"Hi, I'm Alin Trodden. I write texts, read books, and look for impressions. And I'm not bad at telling you about it. I am always happy to participate in interesting projects."

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