A Commemorative Stained Glass Window
A commemorative stained glass window can help us remember those who are dear but no longer with us. They are often seen in churches but this project was for a private residence. The scale was smaller than one might see in a church- more personal. It was to be the final phase of a very extensive home remodel which included a beautiful covered back lanai. The initial idea was to have natural looking greenery with a white bird of paradise as the design focus- a way to bring the lush garden that the client had developed in the back yard up to the lanai. As she told me about her ideas, her likes and preferences, she asked if we could include a tiare blossom in the design.
What Is In A Name?
Tiare is the name of a beautiful white blossom that grows in the tropics. It is the emblem of French Polynesia and once you smell tiare, you’ll never forget its fragrance. It was also the name of the client’s only daughter. Though the white bird of paradise is larger, the tiare blossom immediately draws your eye before it explores the rest of the design. The denser glass that I used for the foliage really makes the white of the tiare blossom pop visually. The tiare buds remind us of the circle of life, blooming and then fading. As we talked some more, she told me how she had inherited this home from her mother and how there were often two butterflies that flitted through the garden .
Butterflies As Spiritual Messengers
In many parts of the world, including Hawai`i, butterflies are traditional spiritual messengers. A pair of butterflies became the third element in the design. The client wanted them to be as lifelike as possible so a lot of care went into the details. The stained glass window now adds to the serene beauty that graces this Papakolea home. What started out as an homage to the natural world developed into a piece of art that brings to mind those who are loved.