I found several old multi-pane windows in our barn when we moved. I cleaned them up and added mirrors and a cardboard backing for inserting pictures into the "frames"! They are great and friends and family all want them for Christmas! My second try, I used colored tissue paper as backgrounds for my pictures and cut-to-size scenes from wallpaper border to create a western theme! These are great and easy!
Create Artwork With Old Books
Another idea, I found an old Alice in Wonderland book and took it apart. The illustrations were beautiful. I picked out six of them and put one in each section of the window panes. I backed each with a piece of foam board, then stapled a piece of floral fabric to the window so no one could see the "stuff" underneath. It came out really nicely. I sold the piece at a consignment shop in my town. I'm on the look out now for more old books that have pretty illustrations, maps, or floral prints. The books are harder to find than the windows!
By Sarah G.
My stepfather made greenhouses out of the raised beds in his garden with recycled multipane windows. I've also seen plans in Sunset for a garden workshop using recycled windows.
I have painted a 8 pane window frame, removed glass too, it's chocolate brown to go with my living room color and hung it behind my couch. Another 3 pane window, I left the glass in, painted it, used eye hooks and chain and hung it on a wall going down a stairway from my bedroom loft. The last one was an old stained glass window, cleaned it up and using eye hooks and chains hung it on the one side of a two large window that doesn't open on the one side, they all look great, can't wait to get at the others in the garage when it is warmer out
I had a kitchen down in the basement that had no windows. I found an old barn window, enlarged photos I had taken of my flowers, and taped them to the glass so that when the window was hung over the sink I could "look" outside and see my garden! You could also have one photo enlarged at a copy shop and use just one scene, maybe frame a calender.
I saw this at a local recycled art fair a few years ago. Broken colored and textured glass arranged in the form of bearded irises and adhered to the glass of an old window. A beautiful alternative to stained glass.
I saw a "window table" while I was driving by a yard sale. I found it to be interesting. I don't know how useful it would be other than for decoration. The flat part of the table was an old window with multiple panes in it. The legs were four patio columns which were affixed to the window.
I have some windows I am going to do this with, but I might just use regular lumber for the four legs. I looked at the prices at Lowes for these wooden patio columns, and I would not pay over $100 for four patio columns to do this project, but I am going to tweak it and use something else for the legs of the table.
Keep an eye out for old windows with wood frames at yard sales. They can be made into rustic looking picture frames. Find pictures that are a little smaller than the window and use a matte, which can be found at any craft store, to give it a finished look. Use tape or staples (put in sideways) to hold the pictures and mattes in place. Multi-pane windows can be used to frame multiple pictures. An inexpensive way to find artwork or pictures to frame is to use old calendar pages.
I got this old window at a salvage store. $5.00. Used clear Elmer's glue mixed with a small amount of acrylic paint to create faux stained glass paint. Outlined my pattern with black paint that comes with a tip. Added embellishments and presto, trash to treasure.
I was given this old frame, and decided to make it look realistic. I put a cut up poster behind the places where the panes were, and it looks like I am gazing out into a serene waterfall in the woods.
Some of my snail collections are on it, and for the photo, I would have taken them off. However, I have cats, and everything in this house is glued down! But, this may inspire some of you just the same.
Reclaim an old window by adhering broken glass, old hardware or shells (use your imagination) using a strong bonding compound. This window can be put outside or in. For this window I used all recycled materials: broken glass, wire, grass, and the flowers are bullet shells.
Instead of turning an old window into a decorative mirror, I decided to smudge up the glass with grey acrylic paint. I then finger painted "milk" bottles in each pane. This went well with my country kitchen/vintage decor.
Share Your Feedback: Once you try any of the above solutions, be sure to come back and give a "thumbs up" to the one that worked the best for you. Do you have a better solution? Click "Share a Solution" above!
Here are questions related to Crafts Using Old Windows.
I have found several old glass window panes. They are clean and without frames. I just cannot think of what to do with them. I would love to create something crafty with them; perhaps to sell. Any ideas?