How to Install Stained Glass Windows

DIY Stained Glass Window Installation

When I originally brought this door home for restoration, I removed the glass panes.  The glass came out easily once I carefully removed the molding that held it stable.

Refinishing Door - Removing Glass

I decided right away that the old molding had to go.

Old Window Molding

The staples that held the molding in place was pretty old and tired.  Besides, I wanted something a little more decorative, and tiny trim molding is pretty inexpensive.  Priming and painting molding strips before cutting really saves time.

New Molding Profile

To cut my new pieces, I removed all the staples from the old molding and used each piece as a template for the new molding.  A power miter saw came in very handy for the mitered corners.

Here are the old moldings laying beside the new molding strips, ready for installation.

New Molding Ready to Install

Cutting the new molding pieces only took about 15 minutes.  (Of course, having an extra pair of hands helped.  Thanks, HH!)

Of course, a really smart person would have labeled the old strips as to which opening they fit into before she ever took them off the door. 😉

I pre-tested each stained glass pane to decide the best location for each one.  (My window openings were slightly different, and the stained glass panels varied a tish, too.)   I removed the glass and fit the molding pieces into the openings, switched a few around for a better fit, and then we were ready to install the windows

Test-Fitting Molding Strips

We began with nailing molding at the bottom pane and worked our way to the top pane.  It was very simple and quick with a power trim nailer.  We used 1-1/4″ brads for the door areas.  For the thin stiles, we used 3/4″ brads.

Nailing Molding Around Windows

When all panes were securely behind the molding strips, we caulked all the cracks and joints.  The picture below shows the before caulk gaps.

Caulking Cracks and Joints

I like to use painter’s putty for nail holes.  It stays a little pliable and doesn’t shrink.

Painter's Putty

I promise y’all, I’m not paid by DAP to advertise their putty.  I just like to use painter’s putty and wanted to share it.   This just happens to be the brand on my shelf right now.

After the caulk and putty dries, it’s time for a final touch-up coat of paint.

Installed Stained Glass

I was surprised how easy and fast this installation turned out to be.  It just goes to show we shouldn’t be intimidated by an unfamiliar project.

To re-cap, it all began with Home Jewelry.

Door from Hallway

The Hallway Side

You can read about the door renovation in Antique Door Restoration: Mouse Hole Eliminated.  Later, we installed the door as a swinging door between our kitchen and hallway.  You can read how to do that in my post about How to Make Your Door Swing.

This is the final post about this antique door project.  Now you’ve got the low-down on the entire looooong project – a year, y’all.  Here’s to a timely renovation the next time I drag home an antique door.  (Did I hear a gasp in the other room?)

I’m thinking antique screen door from the kitchen out onto the porch.  So farm-house-y, y’all.  Stay tuned… (my laughter fades away as I close out this post).

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  1. Sheryll & Critters. says

    Wow, how fantastic is this anyway? I love this door so much. I obviously am way tardy in reading your posts again. I have to read about how to make my door swing………… but might take me a bit.

    My darling Sugar The Maine Coon Boy died Sunday and it was so painful for me. He was my very first kitty kat and if those who think they don’t like kitty kats could have lived with him the briefest time……. they would definitely have been immediate kitty kat lovers. I still am crying over losing him.

    • Kim Hood says

      I’m sorry, Sheryll! It’s so hard losing your pet! Don’t feel bad about crying over him – for as long as it takes to feel like you don’t need to cry all the time.

      Thank you for visiting to “catch up”. As always, I appreciate your encouragement and comments. 🙂