One of the first stained glass window designs I created was for a pair of tall, narrow windows in the side wall of a 1950s house. The elegance of the long stems and leaves of the iris struck me as the perfect flower to make for those spaces. Recently, I revisited the iris theme in a new freestanding panel design.
I had an angular, black glass stand and I thought it would lend itself to an explosion of leaves and large iris flower heads. The intricate details of the design would need to be supported on a solid piece of glass. This was cut, from clear, textured glass, into an angular design, to echo the angle of the frame and bring an Art Deco vibe to the piece.
To achieve the naturalistic flow I like in my stained glass designs, I had made a sketch of how the leaves and flowers would look. This was more labour intensive, as each flower and leaf was comprised of totally unique shapes. Each petal and leaf was then cut from different tones of green and purple glass, before copper foil was fixed around each piece. Then the foil was soldered so that the parts could be assembled together.
Again, to ensure a naturalistic finish, I layered the petal pieces over one another, giving a 3D effect that bounced light in all directions. The leaves and flowers were also intertwined to appear as they would look in real life.
Wire details were added for stems, leaf veins and the distinctive, upward-pointing petals of the iris, known as the standards.
While the leaves and supporting frame, with their strong, black outlines, have a decidedly Art Deco design, the softer iris flowers and the layering hint at my other design style love, Art Nouveau.
Whether it stands in a window or on a table out of direct light, this piece offers the chance to have a beautiful bouquet of irises year-round, which will never fade or need watering! It is a timeless design that would suit traditional or contemporary homes.
This truly unique artwork in stained glass is available to buy in my website shop now. Nobody else will have the same!