Some Tiffany-style lampshades are made using large panels of curved stained glass. I have repaired many traditional Tiffany lamps, which are built up from a lot of small pieces of flat glass, but sometimes I am asked to repair a curved panel shade.
It depends what the damage is on the curved glass shade whether I can effect a repair. Recently, I was able to offer a solution for a pretty, pink Tiffany lamp that had been knocked over by an exuberant dog! This lamp had sustained some nasty damage, but only to one panel of the stained glass.
The owners of the lamp were happy with my suggested repair, whereby I proposed to ‘patch’ the missing glass area with a new flower design. I drew up a Mackintosh-inspired rose on the computer to give them an idea of how it could look. This round rose shape seemed to lend itself to the damaged area, and was also in keeping with the Art Deco aesthetic of the original lamp.
The owners live some distance away, but they were able to post the damaged Tiffany lamp to me (well packed in two strong boxes put one inside the other). It arrived without further damage, I am pleased to say.
I realised that the vase cap on the top of the lamp had been severely dented by the accident, pushing the whole lightshade out of shape. The first job was to knock the worst of the dent out to reset it.
Next, the broken stained glass fragments were removed and the edges were ground down to create a rounded hole ready for the replacement glass rose.
I measured out the hole and cut the rose out of some new white stained glass. Each piece was edged with copper foil tape. The edge of the hole on the lamp was also edged with copper foil. The rose was soldered together so it had a slight curve. A simple green leaf was also cut from stained glass and added to the design.
A long, curved ‘stem’ of copper foil was added to the panel, purely for decorative reasons. This was soldered and blacked to match in with the repair above. The idea was to make a feature of the new area and to make it appear as though the new Art Deco rose had always been part of the design of this Tiffany lamp.
I was very pleased to be able to save this lamp, that would have been unusable and probably thrown away without this repair. I was also pleased that the owners loved the solution. They said, “All I can say is wow! What a skilled person you are. The shade looks fantastic and we are very impressed and delighted.”
Feedback like this makes my job worthwhile :). I always try to help people with their stained glass repairs and renovations if I can. Sometimes that means coming up with novel solutions.