As many of you know, I am often asked to repair broken Tiffany lamps. Sometimes there is damage where the vase cap has come apart from the glass shade. Sometimes the individual stained glass pieces are cracked or missing. Rarely do I have a commission to replace all the panels in a shade.
However, this was the case with a recent project. The client had an attractive, ornate metal base with a petal-shaped frame. Unfortunately, the curved, pink stained glass petals had been badly damaged and the metal frames had been pushed out of shape.
The client wanted to save the lamp, so I suggested a solution in a Tiffany style.
She was redecorating and had had some furniture covered with a sumptuous, gold coloured fabric. I was able to find a stained glass in a warm yellow-gold colour that toned in well with the fabric.
As I don’t work with curved glass, the plan was to recreate the curved, petal shapes with small pieces of flat glass. These would be joined together using traditional copper foil technique.
The bent petal frames were straightened and the old glass removed.
I managed to extract one of the undamaged, pink petals intact. This was used to support the replacement stained glass pieces in the right positions for soldering.
Each rounded petal would be replaced with 10 stained glass pieces. These were tack soldered together in the centre, so they could be manoeuvred into position in the metal frames. They were soldered on to copper foil that was added around the inside of each metal frame. The soldering was strengthened inside and out and finished with bead soldering on the outside. Then the solder was blacked and cleaned to make a bold contrast with the warm gold of the stained glass.
With its ‘Tiffany’ feel, this new glass shade sits perfectly on the old but still attractive base.