Stained glass restoration and conservation
We are glass painters, not administrators or archivists. That’s why we won’t accept work which requires an unreasonable amount of paper-work. (You may find other studios which enjoy paper-work; we don’t.)
Indeed, we will only do as much documentation as is strictly required by common sense (usually far less than grant-dispensing bodies require). This is because paper-work costs time and money, which is often better spent on actual work; and conservation is itself expensive, because it is so painstaking.
“Only as much documentation as required …”
Indeed; we once used a 20-page report to demonstrate (against prevailing views) how an ancient window’s repairs were best tackled in situ.
This short report saved our client many tens of thousands of pounds in removal and re-installation costs, plus it avoided the expense of repairing all the invariably ensuing damage.
Our own restoration fee was 9.2% of the alternative procedure.
That was a case of justified paper-work.
We are skillful imitators, copiers, forgers and mimics.
If it can be copied, however difficult it is, we can do it. (This is the reason we can design and paint new stained glass windows in any style.)
Here you see David, re-painting the coat of arms from Dinder Hall:
It arrived at our studio in 721 small and jumbled pieces, all wrapped like this (with many fragments missing):
And this is how it left us – or rather what its forgery looked like when we returned it to its owners:
Another time, we travelled to the South of France on account of this gorgeous window you see here:
There was extreme damage to several sections like this:
… which meant forgeries like this:
Difficult, time-consuming, and costly.
But now you can look through the original window onto the Bay of Nice and you would never know there once had been such damage.
Many clients send us items they’ve bought at auction which we then conserve or restore as close-to-new as possible. Here is one such worthwhile piece of re-leading-in-progress:
When this window and its other half arrived, the nineteenth-century glass was full of cracks. Modern factory-made glass was unacceptable. Therefore we employed a glass blower to make new mouth-blown glass in the necessary colours.
Right now we are restoring many windows for a mansion on the shores of Lake Geneva. The client is confident he can trust us (rather than another studio) to do this work for him.
Agreed – this doesn’t say much about our marketing:
The owners of this erstwhile badly damaged window here had been searching for 12 years before they found us:
12 years: it made us realise our communication was not good enough, and now we’ve made things better.
Good work vs. bad
The point about good restoration work is, it shouldn’t call attention to itself (whereas bad work sticks out). Here are some comparisons between good work we did and bad work we replaced: click here for good vs. bad stained glass restoration.
Your next step
If you have stained glass conservation or restoration we can help with, please send us your photos.
Let us look at the photos first and then (once we’re well informed about the style and kind of damage) we’ll arrange a time to talk with you.
Please send your photos here.