What Kind of Glass is used for Stained Glass?

What Kind of Glass is used for Stained Glass? (Explained!)

Art glass sheets are usually used to make Stained glass art. Art glass sheets are manufactured in the UK and the United States primarily.

The antique glass was primarily used for making stained glass in the 20th century. Gothic revivalists crafted this type of glass in the mid-19th century.

There are a variety of art glass sheets that can be used to make stained glass windows. Red-colored art glass is usually quite expensive.

Can you use any glass for stained glass?

Yes, you can use either opaque or transparent glass as stained glass. One can also use fusible sheets of glass for stained glass.

There are a few varieties of art glass sheets on the market but they all are made of silica sand. There are small quantities of Soda ash and lime in the glass too.

Art glass is produced in a variety of colors and textures that help you design your favorite stained glass craft projects.

Antique glass

There are a lot of variations of antique glass. Most of these variants can be differentiated into two types, viz., full antique and semi-antique.


Full-antique glass is handmade using glass-blowing techniques. This type of glass has a rich color, translucency, and surface striations.

There are trapped air bubbles and air pockets in the full-antique glass. These air bubbles are called ‘seeds’.

This texture is the reason why stained glass windows made with this glass look wonderful. Full-antique glass is one of the most expensive types of stained glass sheets.


The semi-antique glass looks akin to the full-antique glass sheets but it is made without the ancient glass-blowing technique.

A machine is used to simulate the striations of the full-antique glass. The glass comes with a single color and consistent thickness.

Beveled glass

Beveled glass has angled edges. The edges of this glass are polished, angled, and are usually half-inch wide.

The glass is usually clear, so the light reflects through the edge of the glass. This creates a prism-like effect in the glass.

Cathedral glass

Cathedral glass is a simple type of stained glass that usually comes in a single color. Cathedral glass is machine-rolled or mouth-blown.

Cathedral glass is a translucent sheet rolled by a machine or mouth-blown. The glass is textured on one side. The glass is often found in medieval European cathedrals.

What is Opal stained glass?

Opal stained glass is short for Opalescent stained glass. This type of glass is also called the ‘American glass’.

Opalescent glass is opaque as its name states, one cannot see through the glass. The glass comes with different degrees of transparency.

Opalescent glass can be made using a single color or up to 4 colors. Opalescent glass is used in stained glass lamp shades or mosaic art.

Glue chip glass

Glue chip glass has a natural-looking textured pattern. This texture is made by applying animal hide glue to a sheet of glass, and then heating it.

A beautiful frost-like texture is seen on the glass as it contracts. Glue chip glass is used for background panels and borders.

Iridescent glass

Iridescent glass is made when metallic treatment is done to Cathedral glass or Opalescent glass. A layer of a metallic oxide is added to the hot glass surface.

Iridescent glass is known for its glittery, reflective properties. The metallic bonding with the glass is the result of this reflective property.

What is mottled glass?

Ring mottled glass is a type of opalescent glass that’s crafted to create small, circular areas of opacity. This leads to visual surface mottling.

Ring mottled glass is used in Tiffany-style lampshades, glass mosaics, and nature-themed window panels.

What is flashed stained glass?

Flashed stained glass is created by coating a colorless gather of glass with one or two layers of colored glass. 

This is done by placing the colored glass sheet above the colorless glass and then blowing the glass.

Happy crafting 🙂