Two years ago I sent my daughter a camp bunk sign to decorate her bed at Girl Scout Camp Timber Ridge near Atlanta, GA. This summer she is working as the health assistant at Girl Scout Camp St. Albans near Seattle, WA. I wanted to send her something to decorate her space in the health center. A friend recently asked if I had any craft ideas that use transparency sheets. Since I had some colored transparent contact paper, I made a faux glass stained glass banner to send my daughter.
My daughter was excited to receive her banner. Her enthusiasm inspired me to make the alien banner for her brother who is a science fiction fan.
Step 1: Supplies
- Transparent or translucent colored contact paper
- Jewelry jumprings
- Yarn, cotton friendship bracelet thread
- Electrical tape, optional
- Transparency sheets
- Transparent/translucent plastic report covers
- Cut up translucent milk jugs
- Cut up clear plastic food trays, usually lids
Just like real stained glass, the contact papers I used had different textures and transparencies. The blue was darker and had ridges, and the green was smooth and more transparent. The blue contact paper I used was sold as self adhesive vinyl book covers.
I used jumprings similar to mini key rings for the letters and plain round ones for the shapes.
Although the transparencies worked well for small shapes, they were not sturdy enough for large open shapes. The report covers worked well for the large letters. Translucent milk jugs made darker "glass" shapes.
Step 2: Tools
- Small pliers
- Mini hole punch
- Paper clips
- Cookie cutters
- Printed patterns
For the letters for Gypsy, my daughter's camp name, I used Arial Black font size 450.
Step 3: Create Your Stained Glass
Roughly cut out pattern and plastic "glass".
For the alien, attach green contact paper to both sides of the plastic "glass". Paper clip patten under the plastic.
For other shapes, paper clip the pattern under the plastic. Cut strips of translucent colored contact paper and apply to plastic, overlapping the edges until the pattern is completely filled.
Removing the backing from small pieces of contract paper is tricky. It is easier to cut a large piece of contact paper, remove the backing, and cut it into smaller pieces.
Step 4: Cut Out Shape
Cut out desired shape. It is easier to cut inside curves first.
Step 5: Add Details
For the alien, cut out the eyes from the pattern and use a template for an eye patterns. Using the eye patterns, cut eyes from black electrical tape and add to alien. Lay the pattern behind the glass to help with eye placement.
I used blue electrical tape for the Christmas tree base and red electrical tape for ornaments. I used black electrical tape for the Christmas light bulb base.
Step 6: String the Glass Pieces
Using a mini hole punch, punch holes in the tops of "glass" shapes. Use two holes for wide pieces. Put jewelry jumprings through the holes. If needed, use pliers to make sure rings are attached securely. Thread yarn or cotton thread through rings.
Step 7: Hang the Banner
Step 8: Other Uses: School Supples & Christmas Ornaments
The intial "G" I created from a transparency was too floppy to hang. Instead I used it inside a report cover for a fun school supply.
I made extra small aliens to give as Christmas ornaments to the boys in my family. I also made Christmas trees and Christmas light bulb ornaments.