Poor Man's Stain Glass Art aka Broken Glass Mosaic DIY

Broken Glass Mosaic Tutorial


  • assorted clear and colored glass pieces
  • flatten glass marbles, sea glass - optional
  • Modge Podge or any other adhesive that dries clear
  • old brush
  • wood frame (I used a barn wood frame) 
  • glass cover that fits in the picture frame - will become the 'base' on which the glass pieces are glued
  • gloves to protect you from cuts
  • eye screws 
  • old wire hanger 

1.   I used the E6000 adhesive in the silver tube pictured above (can be bought at craft stores) to glue the glass cover to the frame.  Let dry until secure. This glass will now become your base to glue the glass pieces on. 

2. Gather your glass pieces.  I recommend cleaning or rinsing the glass cover and glass pieces first.  I did my first frame outside and ended up with specs of dirt in the glue.  
~ Your repurposed glass pieces can come from old wine bottles, vases, drinking glasses, jars etc.  I tried to find different textures, colors, and shapes to make it interesting.  The smaller 'accent pieces' can come from bought flattened marbles or sea glass.  I even found some transparent little buttons at the thrift store I want to use on the next one. I like adding some extra pop of color.  It is not really necessary to buy any thing, though- once you start looking you will likely find tons of stuff at home.~


 Barn Wood frame with glass- disregard the wire hanger.  That will be removed. 

 Glass Accent pieces

 My broken glass collection

 3.  You can break the glass safely by wrapping the jar, bottle etc. in an old towel and gently hitting it with a small hammer.  You can also wear thin gardening gloves so you don't cut yourself.  Be sure to throw the small glass shards away so you don't step on them!

4.  Brush Mod Podge, Elmer's glue or any other glue that dries clear on to glass base.  I used an old bristle brush because I like the texture it adds.  Layer it on thick.  Arrange your pieces on the glass base.  I used E6000 to anchor the larger pieces to the base.  Because the edges are irregular you may need to layer the pieces a bit and glue pieces not only to the base but other glass pieces.  Overlapping adds interest.  The more densely colored accents pieces add some pop.  This mosaic will be very dimensional.... at least mine were... don't be afraid to use the curved bottoms of glasses, jars etc. I even have a portion of a glass tea cup in one of my broken glass mosaics.

5.  Allow to dry.  Test for loose pieces that need re-anchored.

I had planned on adding a layer of resin once the glass pieces were firmly anchored and dry, but found it was not really necessary.  I had some 'open' spaces in once of my frames were a couple larger glass pieces came loose.  I left the space open because the brush strokes from the 1st layer of Mod Podge looked nice.
Mod Podge Layer 

6. Screw in Eye Screws.  I am sharing the photo of this sign I made with eye screws and an old wire clothes hanger shaped to be a decorative hanger.  The broken glass mosaics look best hung with light shining thru them.

Wire Clothes Hanger - Hanger! 

Finished Product ~~ minus the eye screws and hanger!  Need to do that!  :)

The photos don't capture these well so if you like this, you will love them in person!

My art studio space.  In addition to painting, I love working with repurposed items.  
My husband is a wood turner and my son likes to do wood working so there should be more along this same line coming soon. 
You can read here how I got some of my materials.

My etsy shop has some repurposed, vintage pieces for sale in addition to paintings and pet portraits.  I always appreciate the likes and sharing!  :)

See Broken Glass Mosaic II here!

 Thanks for stopping by!  
I would love to see what you do, so come back and share in the comments!  

happy trails!

Sue Steiner


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