It was great to get my hands on this beautiful old fireguard, but it was in a pretty sorry state when I was first awarded the commission.
It had been in my client’s family for years and had great sentimental value but time had left its mark so this really was a stained-glass restoration project. It had fallen over on its tiny feet and smashed and ever since then it had gathered dust.
The first thing I did was to take it to a local Blacksmith Munroe, fantastic female blacksmith Katie Wright. www.blacksmithmunro.co.uk [do you want to reference the blacksmith and put a link to his website if he has one?] to ensure the problem didn’t happen again. He She designed and made a completely new base with larger, more stable feet was able to extend the feet. It was then that we discovered the ironwork originated from the 1930s.
The giveaway was the style of rivets that had been used, but my guess is the glass was even older as the pattern is more akin to the Edwardian or Victorian era. It’s likely the fireguard had a previous life as a window.
I made a rubbing of the stained-glass panel in order to achieve an accurate pattern to work from, then removed it from the ironwork frame and left the frame with the blacksmith to work on.
About half the pieces of glass needed replacing with new glass that I matched with the old. At the client’s request, I painted the family coat of arms on the roundel in the centrepiece and re-leaded around it. They were thrilled with the outcome.