Need some inspiration? Check out these workshops. Maybe you will find some ideas you can use here.
You can share your workshop by emailing a hi-resolution image to Mail@StainedGlassNews.com. Include your name, address, and a paragraph or two about the work space. You might see it in print or here on the web!
Here’s what Brandi had to say about the workshop her husband created for her:
My husband wanted to build a garage so he had a workshop. I told him that the only way he could was if he made a shop for me. We built a two story barn style garage. My workshop space is 24'x30'. I have a 16' work bench with a light table built in. Shelves on the bottom of my bench give me storage for my saws, grinders, glass remenants, etc.
Allen Park, Michigan
I think every stained glass hobbyist should be married to a woodworker! My wonderful, talented husband Mike made the glass storage for me, as well as the handy tool holder. He is doing his best to help me stay organized in my workshop!
My husband and father-in-law built this workshop for me in our new home. My best friend
figured out a way to mount the glass samples on the wall. She used plastic molding, which has a groove for the glass to sit in, and tacked elastic midway to hold the glass in place. Also, my husband made a grinder surround by using a plastic bin. He cut out one side, covered the cutout side with clear window glass, and cutout a hole for the electrical cord.
I have the dream workshop! After 30 years of doing stained glass in the basement with the furnace as my view, I have the perfect studio. It is a double car garage size attached to the house, with lots of windows and the view faces the sunsets. My husband built the storage and cupboards (17’), a 17’ workbench and behind a 6” island with lots of outlets. A heated cushion floor, multitude of lighting, trap floor vacuum, air filter and more.
Frank Lacy and Louis Pulice
Clayton, New Jersey
When we started doing stained glass four years ago, we had a sheet of plywood across to saw horses. As you can see, we have advanced somewhat. We have three working stations, two grinders, one large and one small kilm, an ample supple of glass and all the tools to create professional stained glass works of art. Our future plans call for an addition which will house an even larger studio.
A. J. Rydberg
Solon Springs, Wisconsin
I chose this corner of our basement for my shop because of the natural light in which to work. It also allows me to take a break and enjoy our surroundings so it is the best of two worlds. My shop has plenty of room for everything—glass, patterns, tools, etc. My only problem, I must admit, is that I’m running out of area to hang my finished projects. I frequently tease my wife that some of my projects will just have to hang in the garage.
My studio is approximately 430 square feet, which I painted in a soothing buttermilk colour. The tall ceilings, and good lighting makes it feel light and spacious. Organization is key in any shop. Antique stores provided me with most of my organizational needs. Old tins, soup bowls, antique book shelves, and old wooden pop crates make a studio interesting! I added a few modern touches such as a glass desk, recycled glass shelving, and handmade modular glass storage.
Last year our son took stained glass classes in school and loved it. We checked out our local stained glass store and joined classes as a family. The rear wall is covered from floor to ceiling with shelving for glass and supplies. The work table is 4' by 7' with a light box mounted on heavy duty slides under the table not to take up valuable table space. There is a kitchen counter and lower cupboards are on the opposite wall for grinder and ring saw use.
New Berlin, Wisconsin
I have recently completed my second home studio. I started with a 20' X 40' lower level area and installed electrical circuit along with daylight fluorescent tube lighting. I built a workbench with storage for 122 glass and hardware parts jars. I also constructed a 26" X 38" light box with changeable tops, frosted acrylic for tracing/cutting and PVC for a waterproof grinder platform.
Glen Carbon, Illinois.
Here’s what Jessica had to say about the workshop where she and her grandma work:
It has taken awhile to get things just the way I want them. I have a large worktable to put my projects together. My husband added glass shelves under the saw/grinder table to save space. My cutting table is an old countertop that I found and added cabinets underneath for support and more storage. Above my cutting table, there is a pegboard to hold all my tools at arms length. The shelves to the left of my cutting table hold scrap glass and miscellaneous items. I also included a drawing table in my studio with a big chair where I can spend time creating new projects.
My husband, who shares his wood shop with me, built and designed my glass shop on wheels. I can follow the natural light as it changes and lock the unit in place after a move. (The lock is under the grinder.) Speaking of the grinder, it comes up to countertop level and also locks in place for easy use.
Glass storage for the project at hand, lots of great drawer space, and adjustable, pass through shelves are a few of this glass shop’s features.
The colorful upright, pull out drawer has hooks for hand tools. (My husband laminated a bright glass poster behind the hooks.) The other upright drawer on the right has shelves with round grooves cut out for holding chemicals.
One half of the top surface is shared with a built in light box that fits a Morton Maxi Surface for cutting on and two interchangeable workboards with a surface corner squared.
Tell me, what glass enthusiast could ask for more?!
Sugar Land, Texas
“I am lucky enough to have a room set aside specifically for my studio. My wonderful husband designed a U-shaped work area with space for a window as large as 7’ by nearly 3’. There is also room for the grinder, a table saw set at the height of the work surface, and a built in light table. He built storage beneath it all as well as additional electrical outlets. I have a ceiling fan so when I am soldering I can open the window and blow fumes away from the area I am working in.
“The room is decorated with my children’s art work and quotes that inspire me. It is a wonderful place to spend time in and a pleasure to work in.”
Charlotte, North Carolina
I took my first stained glass lesson about a year ago. My husband decided to make our unused spare bedroom into my craft studio. The pictured unit is three 24”x78” cabinets bolted together with the 24”x72” work surface hinged at the bottom and connected to all three cabinets. The four lower cabinet doors support the work surface. Each cabinet has adjustable shelves and a six-outlet power strip, providing plenty of storage and electrical outlets.
“When a guest does show up at the door, all the doors on the unit can be shut and the work surface can be raised and locked. The unit takes 16”x72” of the room floor space.
Glen Rock, Pennsylvania
Here’s what Mya had to say about her workshop:
My third bedroom has been converted into a glass studio. My husband made my workbenches which are on wheels, allowing me to move them if needed. The benches have storage shelves underneath. I prefer using my benches in a U-shape for easy maneuvering. I have plenty of room for my grinder, glass box, and projects, not to mention work space. I have three shelves and two storage cabinets on the walls for storage. Chemicals and soldering iron, etc., can be locked in the cabinets out of the reach of frequently visiting grandchildren. I loved designing my studio to be multifunctional. It can be a nice place to relax, sit or sleep on a comfy futon and watch TV, an office space (desk not shown), and of course, my studio to make stained glass..
Hendersonville, North Carolina
A few years ago, I decided to convert my seldom used basement into a glass studio. The work counters were made long enough to accommodate friends and neighbors as interested as I was in the exciting hobby of stained glass. It became a community project with one neighbor installing adequate lighting and another establishing a proper place for patterns, books and reading material. Just recently, I added storage shelving for glass, keeping each color in its own place. It is amazing how delightful and efficient it is to have the glass color coded. No more searching for just the right piece. The glass is less apt to chip or break and it is easily viewable.
Here’s what Barbara had to say about her workshop:
We bought our house because of this 12’x21’ bonus room which we converted to a glass studio. We installed cupboards along one wall. My grinder, miter saw, band saw, television and stereo all fit nicely on this counter top, yet give me plenty of room to spread out. The 4’x8’ work bench is on lockable wheels so that I can move it around. An area under the counter top was left open so that I can slide the workbench under the counter top and have more space in the center of the room.
My husband built a deep sectioned cabinet which holds glass as large as four square feet. My sandblasting machine vents directly outside behind a window! My light box stands against a wall so that I can stand full sheets of glass against it, yet it also swings up with legs that come down to support it so that it can be used as a light table.
There are large windows on both sides of the room plus a huge skylight in the ceiling directly over the workbench. This is a very pleasant work shop, but by far the best feature is that I can close the door to the mess!
Here’s what Julie had to say about her workshop:
I’m proud to be able to share pictures of my workshop in the loft of my townhouse. It’s taken years to get such a great and efficient work area. Plastic bins are hung on the wall for my color-coordinated scrap glass, readily accessible for mosaics and small projects. Underneath is a hanging fluorescent light to shine up through it. I have two large Morton System boards set up inside of a border of 1⁄4” corner molding to hold the boards securely in place.
You can see I have a kiln for fusing and slumping, on the table across from the light table. On the far desk, I have my ring saw and grinder. Between the shelves and drawers, I have lots of storage. There is wonderful light in my loft with incandescent and fluorescent light available. I have found this combination of light brighter and less glaring. I find that having a bulletin board is motivating to hang pictures of friends’ projects or what I want to make “someday.” Of course, my pets like to help me out with my stained glass. Don’t worry, I shove them out of the way when I really get going.
Since moving from Illinois to Arizona, my workshop has moved up from the basement (Arizona houses don’t have basements) to the laundry room. The washer and dryer are in the foreground and can be used as an extended counter top space when needed. I designed and had built the counter top in the corner with large pullout drawers underneath for patterns and upper cabinets along the wall with sections left open for glass storage.
Since the upper window faces west, the first piece I made in my new home was this Stained Glass Studio window to block the afternoon sun from shining in my face.
A couple of years ago, we added on to our house and decided to add on a 10’x18’ workshop. The gray topped table in the middle of the shop is where I build all of my projects. This cabinet includes a large shallow drawer for storing long tools such as yardsticks, and shelves for storing patterns. The long worktable on the left is made from kitchen cabinets. I raised the counter top 6” to bring it up to the proper height for me to stand and cut glass. The doors in the right background lead to a large storage closet where I store various supplies and have my stained glass books and magazines.
Unlike my old shop (SGN #40), my new workshop is attached to our house and is heated and air conditioned, a necessity in the Houston area. There is a utility sink, telephone, TV, and boom box. My shop is wired for the future addition of a kiln and sandblasting equipment. I am no longer isolated from my family or the outside world when I pursue my passion in life, stained glass.
My stained glass hobby started several years ago when we wanted a stained glass window for our motor home. Being full time RVers, a fancy indoor studio was out of the question. However, I feel I have a great studio right out under the awning of the RV. It’s my studio on the road. We try to follow the sun in our travels so the weather is usually conducive to working with glass. I manage to carry all of my supplies, equipment and glass with me. Of course, we make stops at our favorite glass shops along the way. While working in my mobile studio, I always have curious visitors watching me work or striking up a conversation about our favorite subject. I have two saws and a grinder that I set up on one table. On another one, I do my cutting and soldering.
To date, my largest panel has been 17”x60” — rather large considering the constraints of my traveling studio.
Here’s what Bill had to say about his daughter’s workshop:
I have been doing leaded glass for about 25 years. My daughter started sometime after I did. She bought a house that had a double garage which had been turned into a family room. She decided she wanted to set up a glass shop in that room, so she asked me if I would set it up for her.
This picture shows the workshop. The double tubs have hot and cold running water that drain. She has a large worktable right in front of the cabinets situated so she can work on all sides. She has tubes at the end of the cabinets to store lead and zinc came. She also has a kiln and shelves in another corner.bbbb
My friends at my glass store encouraged me to send a picture of my workplace to you. I converted a bedroom into a work space by adding a window and a sink. I use wooden crates lined with carpet pieces to hold small pieces of glass and I have a larger built-in shelf for larger pieces of glass. There’s lots of room—it’s amazing how it fills up so fast!
Here’s what Diana had to say about her workshop:
My husband saw my love for glass, so after a year of working on top of my washer and dryer (except on wash days), he built me my own workshop. It began with some discounted white counter top supported on a 2”x4” frame at a good working height for me. Add white pegboard that keeps my tools and supplies handy and organized, an abundance of light, plenty of outlets, and I was ready for action. The finishing touches to the workshop were the recent additions of two different vertical glass storage areas; the medium size glass is stored according to color under my light box, while the large size glass is in separate storage on wheels that doubles for extra workspace. Favorite features of my workshop are my light box in a drawer which has either fluorescent or incandescent lighting (shown pulled open), the PVC pipe under the counter to keep my zinc channel straight (see detail), and how little wasted motion is needed to get me from light box to grinder or bandsaw to layout area.
A couple of years ago at age 57, I decided to play less golf and spend more time on my new hobby, stained glass. Having started in a friend’s woodworking shop, I soon learned that the two hobbies were not compatible because of the dust created by sawing and sanding.
My wife needed space for her flowers during the winter months (primarily orchids), and I needed a cleaner environment in which to work. We had a back porch that got direct afternoon sun and was not usable much of the time. By adding a glass enclosure from the edge of the porch to a retaining wall, we increased an 8’x14’ porch to a 16’x14’ room, which happened to be adjacent to a small workshop with a sink.
My work table is 5’x7’x40” high (I’m 6’5” tall). My sandblasting equipment is still in my friend’s woodshop.