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Inside Carl Trimble’s Stained Glass Studio

One of my favorite things about visiting different churches is gazing at the sunlight shining through their beautiful stained glass windows. What an incredible gift it is to be a stained glass artist and to tell stories with bits of light and colored magic!  Look at this amazing piece!

art at trimble stained glass studio

I’ve only dabbled in the glass + solder world, but I learned enough to know enough to know it’s terribly difficult to master. That made me especially thrilled to have the unique opportunity to visit and tour one of the oldest and most regarded stained glass studios in our area.

Trimble Studios-Stained Glass & Art Glass Studio is humbly located in an industrial park, tucked in without signage and nothing to draw attention to the amazing works of art in-progress that are inside.

window wedge at trimble studio

Carl Trimble began his career journey as a self-taught “enthusiast” in 1967. After a stint as an apprentice, he opened his studio doors in 1977 working full-time on his mastery. He later returned to school to earn his graduate degree in Fine Arts and share his knowledge as a teacher and mentor.

miscellaneous art at trimble studio

(^Just a random piece of art leaning against a wall^)

Carl immerses himself in both commercial and personal projects, styled in everything from art nouveau to post modern. His installations can be found as far away as New Jersey, but his notoriety literally spans the globe. He offers no retail, but welcomes custom works of art for private residences, large churches, corporations like TXU, the American Airlines museum and country clubs and even the Mansion on Turtle Creek — to the small projects to finish a piece from a late family member or repair your favorite broken sun catcher. You can view his portfolio here.

His love of the art is infectious and I can certainly relate to his philosophy on tool acquisition: He makes his own tools, buys others without knowing what to use them for, and he’s never bought a tool that hasn’t paid for itself the first time he used it! (Okay, maybe we part ways on the last bit. I’m guilty of gadget hoarding.) Check out this 1930’s paint shaker he uses to mix his epoxy!

1930's paint mixer

The construction process is so interesting. Glass is laid out on the table like a puzzle and a paper rubbing is made of it with the pieces numbered.

sketch of stained glass project

steve trimble with a stained glass project

Then three-bladed scissors are used to cut the paper apart to make the pattern pieces. A project like this fleur de lis would take about a day and a half to put together.

lead glass fleur de lis

fleur de lis lead glass window

A little further back in the shop, you can’t help but notice the large project for the Hare Krishna center’s glass domes.

hare krishna stained glass dome design

This is a wooden replica covered in cardboard that they use to help create the pattern and determine piece placement.

wooden dome for stained glass

wood form for stained glass dome

Carl Trimble’s work is amazing. We were really lucky to get an inside view of how he creates these incredible works of art. Seeing first hand how painstaking and exact the process is, made me appreciate the stained glass church window that I have in my office — even though it wasn’t made by Carl. I love thinking about the history that this window has been a backdrop to and that it continues to bring beauty to our wall long after the church was demolished!

group photo at trimble studios

Thank you Carl for the behind the scenes tour!

3 Comments

  1. Trista,
    Thank you for the compliment you paid in publishing this article. It is always gratifying to have our work acknowledged in such a way as this. For a very long time, the full range of our work which is included in the concept of architectural art glass, has been the focus of our endeavors. With almost 50 years of experience we are dedicated to designing and creating works which will stand the test of time for our clients, Our passion continues un-diminished and we welcome any inquiries. There is no project too small and very few which are too large.
    Again, many thanks and with warmest regards.
    Carl Trimble
    Trimble Studios

    Reply
    • Thank you again for the engaging and interesting tour. I thoroughly enjoyed it and learned a lot!

      Reply
  2. Thank you, Trista for a wonderful write up on our trip to Carl’s studio!

    Reply

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