Stained Glass Candles to Celebrate Advent


I am making Advent candles again!

But this time I am sharing the adventure, with Phyllis who writes The Berg Blog, (family everyday adventures), and Household Ways ( yummy food and recipes), and All Things Beautiful (home-schooling journel). That's right - three blogs and she posts on every one nearly every day!

And she is raising four boys ages 6 to 15, three with special needs. And her daughter, who is now 19, just graduated last year.

The thing that stands out to me about Phyllis is that she has managed to make every meal, every family activity, every day a learning experience that is an extension of the current home-school lesson plan.

So, if the children are learning about Egyptian history, Egyptian foods are definitely on the menu. But she doesn't just serve Egyptian foods - she actually shares the making of the meal with the children. Her family is learning about Egyptian foods and culture and how to cook at the same time! And then she shares the lesson plan, the recipes and the children making the meal on her blogs. 

Classroom subjects, while inlcuding the normal reading, writing and math, also include medieval history, Shakespere, Greek and Latin , composer studies, Plutarch's lives and nature studies.

Spend a little time on her blog, and you come to appreciate that she is doing a remarkable job of introducing her children to cultures and learning opportunities rarely experienced by many children. Phyllis is indeed an inspired teacher and mother.


Now - go visit  to see her contributions to our joint adventure making Advent Candles. She has included the children in the making and she has tried out several different ideas she has had over the past several months. I think you will find lots of inspiration in her "stained glass" post.

You will not believe what she did to create the "stained glass" above!  Her tutorial for this process is here.  Great kid friendly project.


My own plans for Advent Candles went through a few adjustments before I arrived at the candles you see at the top of the post! They are not perfect and you can learn all the details in this post. All the trilas and all the fun and all the success! 

In the end, this became a very personal project as you will see.

Originally, I planned to use four tall devotional candles; however, as there were no plain ones available, I settled on the shorter version you see here. Devotional candles can be found in many super markets and in Mexican groceries. I found these at WINCO and paid $.86 for each one! They are about 3 1/2" tall.

In addition to the candles, you will need:

Gallery Glass Window Color by Plaid

Gallery Glass Redilead thin line instant lead

Nut pick

toothpicks (opt)

And since Plaid has provided two videos for using the Gallery Glass and Redi-lead, I will leave most of the how to up to them!

How to use Gallery Glass Redi Lead

How to use Gallery Glass Window Color


I found that cutting the lead strips with a craft knife worked very well, and the material is flexible enough to bend into most any shape you wish.


Leading done!


I don't know which was more fun - applying the lead design or "coloring" it in with the Gallery Glass product.

Coloring begins with a bead of liquid color around the edges of the design.


Then the color is blended first using the tip of the Gallery Glass container and then using the tip of a nut pick.


The Gallery Glass appears opaque while wet.


And becomes translucent so that light passes through it when dry - which takes about 8 hours.


Here are two sections - one wet and one dry so you can see the difference side by side.

Be sure to check out tomorrow's post about my adventures with Gallery Glass, some tips and recommendations for working with the product.


And now - a little about the designs and what they mean.

If you remember, last year my Advent Candles represented ideas like gratitude, appreciation and charity.

For these candles, I attempted to create little scenes that depict my favorite places to visit - the places on earth that nourish and rejuvenate my spirit.

From left to right - Mountains, Sea Shore, Desert, Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico.

Santa Fe was the most complicated because there was so much I wanted to represent - the food, the Spanish Colonial culture and the Native American culture, and childhood home.


The chiles on the dividing panels represent the food.  You already know how much I love my chiles!

San Miguel Chapel is the oldest church in the United States. The first adobe blocks were put in place by Spanish settlers in 1610 and the church has been in use ever since. It represents the life long influence of living in a city immersed in Spanish colonial culture.


The Rainbow Man symbol is significant for two reasons.

In Navajo culture, the Rainbow Man is a Yei spirit - a symbol of living in harmony with all things.

The Shop of the Rainbow Man, owned by my grandparents, was pretty much the center of my life in Santa Fe. My grandparents were there 6 days a week working so I was there also every chance I got! And on the occasional weekend - the best of all possible treats- my brother and I got to spend the night with my grandparents in their little apartment behind the shop. Always a great adventure which included dinner out and then in the morning a walk to the "Candy Man Shop" with my grandfather by way of the Santa Fe River Bridges or the Fire Station while my grandmother prepared a breakfast of waffles to be enjoyed with raspberries upon our return.!


The magical and enchanting land in Northern New Mexico, represented here by Camel Rock - a favorite place to visit while growing up and representative of the variety, wonder and uniqueness of the land. New Mexico truly is the Land of Enchantment.

(Yes - there are some big - uh - imperfections in these two and we will talk about them tomorrow.)


The Seashore and my little attempt at waves. To make it look more "beachy" I sprinkled the wet Gallery Glass with glitter and placed a few miniature shells in the "sand".  My sweetie still thinks it looks like mountains. Sigh.

Those negative ions in the sea air always work wonders when I need a good mental healing.!



Desert was easy - cactus and poppies! My two favorite subjects to photograph!

The Arizona and California deserts have always been places of great beauty in the spring - breathtaking new life springing from almost nothing but dry desert floor. Kinda how I see crafting, in a way - something beautiful from nothing much!


And mountains! No matter where they are, they always nourish and restore my heart and make my eyes happy. I have yet to find a mountain I don't love at first sight!

So, don't you agree - all good things to celebrate, reflect upon, and be grateful for during the Advent Season.

Don't forget - "test results" while working with Gallery Glass can be found here.

And if you are here because you are looking for Advent inspiration - here are a few ideas:

Decorate Advent candles with symbols that hold special meaning

Download and print onto magnet backed paper this adorable Fridge Advent Calendar

Make a Norwegian inspired cookie Advent calendar!

These are really beautiful! I

These are really beautiful! I love the way the light shines through the Gallery Glass. We don't use candles here (bothers our asthma) but I have always loved the way the light flickers.

They are awesome, no less. I

They are awesome, no less. I used WindowColour years ago, but this makes me want to buy a whole new set!

These are great. Gallery

These are great. Gallery Glass is fun stuff!

Pam, These are beautiful!

These are beautiful! Now I want to play with those same supplies! I think my kids would LOVE it!

I also love the story about your time with your grandparents. It sounds magical.

Wow. these are so gorgeous!

Wow. these are so gorgeous! And you know I love seeing all the Santa Fe motifs. Keep that Gallery Glass stuff out, because the next time I come over, I'm going to want to play!

Thank you for your lovely

Thank you for your lovely words. These are SO lovely. I cannot imagine having such skill and talent for crafts. I make sure the kids get an opportunity to do lots of crafts, but I never do them myself, because I am not skilled in it! I admire it so much when I see someone who can do such things. I admire you and your work often.