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I'm trying to figure out the "best" way to do a  lesson with a stained glass feel to it. I was unable to find a condensed discussion on various methods. I'm wondering what any of you have tried and liked.

For younger grades, I like coloring a picture and rubbing baby oil on it to make it transluscent. But we'd like to try something different in the older grades.

We've tried using overhead transparencies, but struggle with what to use on them. Sharpies seem to temporarily dry out after just a few strokes. Other permanent markers seems to end up very streaky looking. I tried a sample with acrylic paint which looks nice on the table, but not so nice when hung in a window. One time we used the puffy paint tubes which wasn't too bad, but they sure went through the tubes in a hurry.

So I don't know if I'm expecting too much, or if I've just not figured out the right method to use. Thoughts?

The specific lesson we're doing this time is The Last Supper, so we're wanting to show the bread and the wine.


Exchange Volunteer modified title for clarity.

Some lessons, found here at that use stained glass methods are:

  1. "The Last Supper" Art Workshop written by Jaymie Derden, State Street Church."

  2. The Birth of Jesus Art Workshop written by Carol Hulbert and Sherry Stone, First United Methodist Church. use stained glass method on Glass Votive Holders.
  3. Moses & the Parting of the Red Sea Art Workshop written by Rev. Ron Shifley, Scotland United Church of Christ, Scotland, SD, USA
Last edited by Luanne Payne
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Some craft stores have a "peel & stick" leading, then use glass paint inside the leading. The leading can be formed in any shape easily. My daughter used this on her bedroom window several years ago, and it's still there! The glass paint can be blended; you can use different tools to create texture. (One example used a regular hair comb to create a wavy pattern - it was cool!)

Go to to see their products. I also found an article on using the paint at this site, but as it took me awhile to find it, here is a direct link.

Hope this helps!

Julie Burton

Moderator updated dead link.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

Chris: The product to search for at the site that Julie recommends is called "Gallery Glass." Here's an example of a butterfly window cling project:

It suggests using Liquid Leading™ but it says that it needs to dry for 8 hours. I suppose that would only be ok if you were creating ahead of time, the shapes for them to fill in.

It sounds like a fun project. I'll have to add it to my do-in-the-future list.

Last edited by Luanne Payne
The Plaid Craft Express website has the peel & stick leading, which is much easier to use than the liquid leading. There is no need for drying time, unless you use the liquid leading for "soldering" the ends together. I have used the liquid leading and found it difficult to use, but the Ready Leading is not.

Hi Carol,

We didn't do a window cling - my daughter created a design on the lower half of her bedroom window with the Redi-Lead, then painted in each section. It's been on the window about 6 or 7 years, and looks like it was just done. I tried to do a window cling using the liquid leading, and it wasn't very successful.

I use felt scraps often to "look" like stained glass or a mosiac design. The kids love it, it's cheap and it's not messy...and we always have tons of felt scraps. I have used this for not only stained glass, but "jewels" on Pharoah's collar, wrist guards, etc. It's colorful and easy!
I did that at a conference and it was really fun. Each group had an oddly shaped piece of black felt, and we could decorate it any way we wanted with the felt pieces. When each group was finished we put them together and the pieces formed a chalice! It was very cool.

Felt is cheap and not messy, but I always found the glue would soak into the felt. It might be easier to use adhesive-backed felt for the "glass" pieces. Or, craft foam would also work, but wouldn't look as neat.

For the "Gallery Glass" product, I have done this with several groups, and the results are great! I use sandwich sized plastic zip-style bags. I find/draw 4-6 simple patterns (fish, cross, butterfly, etc) on white paper, and make several copies of each. The patterns are placed inside of the baggies. Then, you can either trace the outline with black and let it dry over night, or allow the youth to trace the pattern with black (can easily smear with the younger kids). Children can fill in the colors they like best. Leave the baggies on a counter to dry, and the kids can pick up their window clings the following week. It usually takes awhile for the paint to dry, so I recommend they wait to take home the finished product. You definitely gotta try it out sometime!!
Stacia - NE

We have done "stained glass" designs using clear shelf paper (comes in different names, a couple are: "Mactac" or "Contact" Clear Adhesive Rolls), electrical tape and tissue paper.

Prior to the lesson the design was drawn on the paper backing in marker (so it would show through) and then electrical tape was used to make the "leading" on the front.

We cut the electrical tape in half to use for the leading in the interior of the design and used the full width strips for the outer edges.

When it is time for the lesson, the paper backing is peeled off and the children stick squares of tissue paper to the sticky side of the Mactac.

To ensure a nice finished product, we restricted the colours the kids had access to (for example, several shades of blue for the water, then replacing the blues with another colour for another area).  When they were done, we put them up on the windows in our Sunday school room with electrical tape around the edges.

Since we had cut the Mactac to fit the windows, it gave a really good stained glass effect --so good that our minister asked us to move the designs downstairs to the sanctuary windows so everyone could benefit.  Since the amount of preparation is significant, we used this as a group activity instead of an individual effort.


Moderator updated by adding photos posted, by Forest Hill United Church, using this same method over in the Last Supper forum here.

Last edited by Luanne Payne

You can make your own window cling paint by mixing regular white PVA glue with a few drops of food colouring and a drop or so of dishwashing detergent.  Here's a blog post with lots of helpful info in the comments:  

They do take a while to dry but look great when done.

Two Ways to Simulate Stained Glass

Translucent pieces of colored tissue paper look like glass when "mod podge-d" (glued) to a transparent surface (such as acrylic or transparency sheets). Get the "high gloss" mod podge so that the dried tissue looks shiny. You can glue black strips of paper to simulate "leading" if you want.

Use this idea to create a "Fiery Furnace" Stained Glass encouragement.

Member Wendy wrote this stained glass idea which uses LIQUID LEADING and says you don't need to wait for it to dry before applying paint. Suggest you blow dry the liquid leading ("ready leading") a bit to get it to set up, then use an EYE DROPPER to drop color into the different sections instead of brushing (brushing will disturb the not yet set up leading).


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