Innovative and yet very personal art glass is becoming an important trend, as people are involved not only in the creative vision, but in the creative process as well.
One place to learn about the art itself and what's available is Designer Glass Works Inc., which recently moved to a new location at 21 E. Gentile St. in Layton.
"Stained glass has been around for centuries," said Jim Johnson, president of Designer Glass Works. "What's new is the innovation we are seeing. People are personalizing the art glass."
One customer brought in a photo of her daughter riding a horse. She wanted that to be turned into a stained glass window for the front door of her home.
"It's making something that has a personal meaning for them," Johnson said.
Though the art of making stained glass has remained steady, technology has expanded people's access to more patterns, designs and placement options.
As the housing market rebounds, the demand for personalized, and even standard, decorative creations has increased as well.
"We are seeing more people wanting to do something different in their homes," Johnson said.
Adding a designer impact and allure is something he says can easily be done with glass creations, too.
"It doesn't take much," Johnson said. "Stained glass allows you to get a big bang for your buck. You just have to put it some place visible."
People often place stained-glass creations in front doors, windows, interior openings above doors and cabinets.
Most stained-glass pieces fall within the range of $75 to $175 per square foot, though the cost varies according to size and complexity, according to the company's website, www.designerglassworks.com.
The site explains that people can still achieve privacy with stained glass in clear textures as well as with cathedral, beveled or colored glass.
No matter the size, cost or design, Johnson said, glass can have an astounding impact.
"It is always vibrant and lively," Johnson said. "The colors stay strong. There is just a sheer beauty to it."
Personalizing a window or cabinet front with a stained-glass image of something dear to the members of the household makes the item unique and meaningful.
But that's not the only trend.
Johnson said while people have become interested in designing their own glass creations, there are those who are interested in learning the craft as well. Every few months, his company offers a daylong class in which people can create their own works of glass art.
He explained that people are able to select their glass pieces and learn to fuse them together in a kiln while in the class setting. This seven-hour class costs $135, and participants are able to do two creations in a class.
Those people are then able to do it on their own if they wish to continue the practicing their skills. This can get pricey, as a kiln costs $350 or more, and other needed tools cost at least a hundred dollars.
No matter if people are creating their own works or having them made, Johnson said stained glass can bring something unique and beautiful to any area of a home. It's something that will remain popular, he said, just as it has for centuries.