Advent Candles: and What I Learned While Playing With Plaid Gallery Glass


In this post I am sharing my experiences and a few tips learned while I was getting acquainted with Gallery Glass.  

It is sort of  a "technique follow-up" to this post in which I shared the meanings behind my Gallery Glass Advent Candles.


Once I got the hang of using Gallery Glass, I had a ball playing with it!

I hit a few snags along the way, but some were my fault for not paying attention.

The image above - my test jar. As I said in my previous post (Making Advent Candles with Gallery Glass), my original intentions were much different than my final results!

And what you see here is one of the main reasons for that! My original intention had been to apply black lines with a Sharpie and fill in with Gallery Glass.

It can be done, but as you can see it is hard to control the application of the Gallery Glass using this method. And trust me, taping off the area to be colored didn't work at all well. When I removed the tape, chunks of the Gallery Glass came off with the tape.

Even applying the Sharpie over the dry Gallery Glass didn't work all that well - mainly because I just really wanted my black lines to be - well - black and solid. All my Sharpie lines allowed too much light to pass through.


Things just weren't working out as planned, so I turned to the thin Gallery Glass Redi Lead - instant lead lines!

I found the material very, very easy to work with and in addition to allowing me to make nice straight lines, I was able to make all manner of curvy lines!


As you can see - I put the "curvy" bit to the test! If you haven't ever played with this instant lead product, you really should!

I did not pre-draw these designs, although I could have done so with a Sharpie. I simply "drew" my designs as I went along. Only on a couple occasions did I have to re-position a line - and you can do that - as long as you don't do it too often with the same piece of Redi Lead.


The rest is almost like coloring a page from a color book! Once your lead lines are in place, draw a line right next to the Redi Lead with the Gallery Glass.


Then using the tip of the bottle, quickly fill in the middle, adding a bit more product if needed.


Now here is where I first got into trouble! For reasons i will not go into (but all my fault), I did not understand that there was one more step!

Thanks to this fabulous videos provided by Plaid, I learned all about an amazing little tool! A nut pick! Who knew the common nut pick is also a worthy crafty tool?

The video shows the technique so well there is no point in my trying to verbalize it here.


The instructions here, mention a combing tool. I didn't have one so I tried a tooth pick, trying very hard not to go beyond the surface of the product. Result -still lumpy as you can see in the Rainbow Man design.

It was right after I painted this one and let it dry that I found the video and proceeded with the rest of the project using the proper technique! You can see what a difference a little nut pick action can make!

You don't need to be careful - just go all the way to the glass surface and move the tip back and forth very quickly.

Oh and one thing I learned - the hard way, as I seemed to learn everything while playing with Gallery Glass - don't paint in several sections with the idea of going back and using the nut pick on them all at once. Do one section at a time. The Gallery Glass may take 8 hours to completely dry, but it does start setting up very soon after application and if you wait more than a minute to use the nut pick, you may get permanent lines.



That toothpick did come in handy however!

No matter how hard I tried to prevent it, I always ended up with Gallery Glass on top of my Readi Lead. It pretty much disappears when dry, except that it does leave a shiny spot which I found objectionable. So as soon as I completed the filling in and smoothing process on a section, I cleaned the window color off the Redi Lead with the toothpick.

Just hold the side of the toothpick against the lead strip as shown and roll it with your fingers as you move along the strip. Works like a charm to pick up the excess color.!


Another lesson I had to learn over and over and over - watch out for renegade fingers!

I was so anxious to add another color sometimes that I simply did not give the previously painted sections time to dry completely. So what you see here is my big thumb print! And not even in the "back" but right next to my favorite mountain peak on the "front." %&*@!*&$%*#!

Nothing to do but either clean off the whole project and start over, or fill in with fresh paint as best I could.


And that wasn't the only time it happened! My beautiful, nice smooth camel rock. Ruined.

And then I remembered camel rock is made up of lots of smaller rocks so I added a few more finger prints and called it rock texture. I will live with it that way.

A constant reminder to let a painted section dry thoroughly before moving on to the next no matter how anxious and excited I am to go to the next section!


Did you know you can add glitter? And small objects? Well you can! And Gallery Glass window color works as a very credible bonding agent! Those babies are not coming off!

Actually, I added the glitter and shells after that particular section had completely dried. My sweetie kept telling me my waves looked like mountains, so I decided if I sprinkled the sand section with glitter and added a few shells ........ didn't work for him. But it works for me!

So - I just wanted to let you know that you can either sprinkle your glitter right after the window color has been applied, or you can brush on a thin coat with a paint brush and sprinkle away.


In the Gallery Glass video, a technique was demonstrated for blending two colors of window color together.

My blending technique, which you can see here on my Mexican gold poppies (and on the camel rock), leave much to be desired. But it does work and with practice, I think it would be very pretty. I don't mind the flowers - they worked OK, but my camel rock - instead of resembling a gorgeous New Mexico sunset, it looks more like the camel is on fire! Well? It does, doesn't it?

Lesson here is to practice and get comfortable with blending before trying it on something important! Imagine that!


For the most part, I really enjoyed working with this product, and once I learned how to properly apply it, I loved the results.

However, there is one thing I would really like to see improved. The window color product seems to vary in it's transparent quality from color to color. Here is a shot of the mostly wet tall devotional candle with the rose, lemonade, lilac and light green shades applied. All colors, when first applied are opaque.


Unfortunately, they do not all dry so that they have the same translucence - some remain pretty much opaque as you can readily see above - especially looking at the lilac color.

The rose color dried to a lovely transparent glaze no matter how thinly or thickly I applied it. Just exactly what I was expecting. The light green and lemonade were less transparent but better than the lilac.

I would like to see more consistency in the product. If I were really depending on the final product being consistently translucent, I would be disappointed. Unfortunately, there is no indication on the product itself that indicates it's translucency or lack thereof.

The only other complaint I had while working with the product is that the containers are not designed to be stable unless they are lying on their side.

The video is very clear about the fact that the bottles should not be shaken in order to prevent air bubbles from forming in the bottle. But the slightest jiggle of the work table or brush of a hand and they fall over. Even when completely full of product, they are very top heavy

Neither of these "complaints" should prevent you, however, from playing with Gallery Glass window color. It is a great product and I had an absolute ball getting to know how to use it! And I love my new Advent Candles, even with all their imperfections.


So back to the giveaway!

Giveaway closed.

I do want to thank both Plaid Enterprises, Inc. and Amy of Mod Podge Rocks for giving me the opportunity to offer my readers giveaways for Folk Art Acrylic Paint, Stiffy fabric stiffener and Glo Away, and Gallery Glass window color.

In the process, I have learned about new products I had never tried before, and I have stretched my crafty muscles and had an awful lot of crafty fun along the way.

Again, the story behind my little Gallery glass candles is here.

And find more Advent Crafty goodness here!

My mom did a lovely old

My mom did a lovely old window about 20 years ago. It is a piece I treasure. It has held up well, EXCEPT for the pale yellow border. It hangs in a window, and the yellow is now clear. It is grapes and lilies, and the purples, greens,and pinks look great. Just the yellow faded out.

I just wanted to say that I

I just wanted to say that I love your write-up.

I've only recently started working with Gallery Glass stain, and I love it.

A couple of points:

Bubbles can be a problem, as can too much pressure. I thought I was being *ahem* crafty, by setting the bottles in a box upside down so I would get a more even flow, but this creates too much pressure and gobs of stain were coming out.

I haven't had any problems with some colors being more or less translucent, but I do notice a difference in viscosity between different colors and it takes a bit to get used to it.

The product is "self-leveling", but I prefer a more textured, organic look, so I use the bare-minimum amount of stain and wiggle and swirl it with the tip of the bottle to give it texture.

Excellent post and write up. I just got some new colors and am dying to try them on a foxglove flower template I made earlier.

Thank you, Merc, for adding

Thank you, Merc, for adding your thoughts and tips for working with Gallery Glass.  

I really enjoyed the experience and have been pleased to notice that the little candles I made are just as pretty as they were the day i completed them.

Like any material or medium, there are quirks and things that one must get used to working with.  Playing with Gallery Glass on an old jar or vase before committing to a project is a good idea!!!

I would like to use this

I would like to use this product on a floor lamp. The globe is white and I want to paint it to look like the ocean. Can I use a brush with these paints instead of using them the traditional way?

Thank you

To be honest, Kimberly, I

To be honest, Kimberly, I don't know!  But I am not exactly an expert.  My experience with the product was that it liked it best if i allowed it to flow onto the surface.  

Additionally,  I was covering very small areas defined by the Redi Lead.  A whole globe is way beyond my experience and i would suggest you contact the good people at Plaid for advice.  They have an entire portion of their site devoted to Gallery Glass and i believe it includes videos and tips and how-to.

Sure wish I could be more help.  Of course you could do as I did and simply experiment until you find something that works.

When I was UGH! YUCK! staining furniture, I was taught to apply the seal coat with silk.  And it worked beautifully - no brush strokes.  Not a one!  Might work for you in this application!

I love your tips, thank you

I love your tips, thank you so much. I am looking for a pattern for a sea scape and boats at a dock. I have looked and looked. I am wondering if you can help me. I have looked for books with patterns in them, but not sure I am looking in the proper place.
Your help would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you
Redding CA.

I just found these paints and

I just found these paints and feel in love. I bought plain glass Christmas ornaments and painted them for gifts. I loved them so much I purchased more to do for myself and candle holders too.

I have some empty vases that

I have some empty vases that could use a bit of life. Great review!

i luv to recycle and rarely

i luv to recycle and rarely throw away my glass jars - i usually use them for pencil cups...votives...vases and just extra storage....this would be a great way to dress them up ....thank you for sharing :)


I have ALWAYS wanted to try

I have ALWAYS wanted to try this... but just never get around to spending money on fun craft things for myself. I would try to do some beautiful asian style upcycling of all the jars we use! I might also attempt a memorial window treatment for our pet chihuahua who we laid to rest on Tuesday November 16th. She was with us 14 years and we are trying to come up with something wonderful to make in her honor.

I've loved gallery glass for

I've loved gallery glass for a dozen years or so.

This year my children and I made a gift for Grandma that is a gorgeous picture - a stained glass window.

I'd love more paints if you'd care to enter me - but mostly I just wanted to say that I love it. :)

I collect all of my glass

I collect all of my glass jars when they're empty of food. I would love to transform any of those.

Fascinating! I have no idea

Fascinating! I have no idea what I would try (vases? votives? wine glasses?) but it looks really fun. Great tutorial.

These paints look awesome &

These paints look awesome & I'd love to try them. I have old jelly jars, mason jars, and even some large kimchi jars that need decorating...also candle voltives too that I have lying around. Thanks for the thorough review.

Okay. THIS rocks completely.

Okay. THIS rocks completely. I have these really cool-shaped jars that I saved from when Cathie got a bunch of cherries from Trader Joe's to make a pie with. I saved these jars because they are oval shaped and will hold a scene in them. I love that redi-lead stuff! I'm going to get some and do you know what you could do? You could put a scene inside the jar, and then outside, 'draw' trees and snowflakes with the redi-lead and use white gallery glass on the outside so the scene peeks through!

WHAT would I do without you?

I have been saving an old

I have been saving an old window for quite a while now just waiting to find a special project for it. This would be perfect. I want to hang it in our living room when I finally finish it.

Thanks for the giveaway!

I played with Gallery Glass

I played with Gallery Glass years ago and your tutorial has moved me to try again. I have many pieces of random glass that would look wonderful after a Gallery Glass treatment!

I would love to be entered

I would love to be entered into the giveaway. Last year I used two tubes of Gallery Glass on wine glasses as a Christmas gift. I used a maroon for grapes and gold for grape leaves. This year we were planning to do the same for another relative's gift. Then, at a space in the mall rented out by a group of local craft artisans, I saw some wine glasses drying. They had a ton of color, looked like the paint had been allowed to roll down the sides, but without big streaks or drips. I love it, and I'm looking online for instructions or suggestions for how to achieve this. It would mean more than just my maroon and gold paint, and I haven't yet purchased any other colors. I think this is a great giveaway and a great review. And I love your finished projects.

Looks like you have learned

Looks like you have learned alot from this project. I really enjoy your product reviews. You tell it just like it is. I like to know not only the good points but what problems others might have had. At least that way if I run into the same problems I might already know the solution (like the toothpick trick).

Our front door has a large oval window with a leaded design but no color. After a bit of practice on another glass object I would love to add some color to the glass in our front door.

I came over from Paint Me

I came over from Paint Me Plaid and boy I'm I ever glad I did! Oh I would love to try this on a number of glass jars and vases I have been collecting to glass etch, but now I am thinking I need to do this to them instead!

That would be fun to try.

That would be fun to try. Thanks for the giveaway.

Beautiful patterns. As I was

Beautiful patterns. As I was reading your fantastic and detailed tutorial (thanks for making all those mistakes for us!), I was thinking of making a birthday candle votive. This looks like great fun. Can't wait to try it.

I have a couple of hanging

I have a couple of hanging glass candleholders & I could transform them into something amazing in the flicker of the flame! Christmas, fall or maybe just general decorations?

I've always wanted to try

I've always wanted to try making my own decorative glasses. My kitchen has a "Martini" theme and I have purchased many beautiful glasses and shakers but I would LOVE to add a few of my own creation :) Thanks! Your candleholders are gorgeous, and I don't think the camel looks like he's on fire! I totally got the sunset feel there!

We just moved and I found

We just moved and I found some random glasses and a vase or two that would look great like this!!!
jinglesells at gmail dot com

I save jars. I just hate to

I save jars. I just hate to throw them away, they all need a good paint job.

I love this project! I would

I love this project! I would love to do this with mason jars as well, I have tons of them lying around!

Oh my, I have got to have

Oh my, I have got to have some. I have some of those smooth old mason jars that would be PERFECT for this project and I simply adore stained glass. Did I mention I have just got to have some of this product??? I also have a (don't laugh) glass fish rounded jar (about 2 feet high) that would be perfect as well. Oh, and I also have some clear glass ornaments.......ewwwww....wouldn't that be pretty around them? I even have some square glass mirrors from the thrifty store that would be awesome on....and I have....well I better quit...I think I'm getting carried away. Thanks so much for the tutorial and all that you and Plaid do.

Just to tell that I used

Just to tell that I used window colors (different brand) to make Holly Family sets in heavy plastic (acetate?) and turns out to be a very beautifull work (and I understookd that unfortunatelly I cannot received this giveaway).

I love the possibilities if

I love the possibilities if this product. Just bought some spaghetti sauce specifically for the jar it was in, nut wasn't sure what to do with it until now! Thanks for including all your mishaps in your post.....really helps a newborn feel comfortable with this!

Wow, I've been looking for

Wow, I've been looking for something like this to use. What do I have around the house to use this technique on...old radio tubes. My husband refurbishes old antique radios & when he finds tubes that don't work or are weak, we use them in art projects. This would be perfect to use to accent the tubes.

dot lewallen

I would love to win this some

I would love to win this some Gallery glass. You have inspired me and my boyz to try Gallery Glass on candles.

I have never used it before but it looks fun. I watched Carol Smith's videos on how to use the Gallery Glass and have seen some of the Sun Catchers on her site and would love to try something along those lines...My 2 boyz also want to try their hand w/the Gallery Glass.

I used this product recently

I used this product recently doing a Frankenstein on Glass Blok. You make it look easy. Would love to try more colors. Thanks for your helpful hints.

I have some different size

I have some different size glas jars in my craft room I would love to do this to!!

I would love to try using

I would love to try using that on a clear glass lightshad for a sconce in my hallway- my hubby and I were looking at them last weekend and couldn't find one to suit us. We like the clear but it was a little too clear if you know what I mean. It would be so cool to transform one with that!