Artist Profile

North Las Vegas, Nevada

Barbara Merchant

Merchant, Barbara

I have been creating stained glass, fused glass, and mosaic glass since 2006. It started because I wanted stained glass pieces in the large windows over our living room french doors and finding that custom stained glass was not in my budget. But taking a class and learning to do it myself was. My husband and I signed up for a class through University of Nevada Las Vegas and the addiction began. As soon as I cut that first piece of glass, I knew this was the art form I wanted to put my artistic energy and imagination into.

Next came the classes that would teach us how to make panels. First came the class that allowed us to make a small window with less than 15 pieces. My husband and I decided on a pattern to use in our side view window by our front door. Then we took it one more step and made three of them so they hung down and filled the window.

The next class taught us how to make a larger window. We were allowed to go up to 24” x 24”. No limit to the amount of pieces was mentioned. We each picked a pattern that we could do to the full size. We walked into our first class with our patterns and ready to go. Our teacher greeted us with, “Those are not beginner windows.” I laughed and replied, “And your point is?” not understanding his comment. Then we looked around to see the other three students all had windows that had 50 pieces or less in them while ours had over 200 pieces each. Hmmm, apparently, we became known as the “overachievers.” But my “Calla Lily” window and my husband’s “Daisies by Water” came out beautifully and were hung proudly in our home.

From these classes our "hobby" began. A small sun-catcher for a friend’s birthday, six matching candle holders for family at our daughter’s wedding, and so it went. Then I got "the call" old classmate and his wife saw a photo of "Daisies by Water” and wanted it for a birthday gift for his mother-in-law. We sold it to him with the thought that we can make another one. Then a small whale sun-catcher that a friend wanted. But these were made from some one else's patterns and I knew that it was time to start designing my own patterns. Having a bit of an art background, I began sketching and learning how my sketch could become a piece of stained glass. And mind you, I was doing this while working full time.

And then 2008 hit...Then I became a victim of the economy during the Great Recession. I was laid off from my job like so many others. A friend of mine, trying to cheer me up, said, “When one door closes, another opens.” My husband laughed and said, “There you go, honey. You love doing your stained glass and fused glass, why not work on selling some of it and start up your own business?” And so began Those In Glass Houses...

My custom designed stained glass panels range in size from 12" x 12" to 4' x 6'. I have donated approximately 20 square feet of custom stained glass to various Non-Profit organizations for their silent auctions and fund raisers (Chefs for Kids, American Lung Association, Adam's Place, and more). I have shipped pieces all over the country and even one piece to Seoul, Korea. My pieces have been displayed in the Lost City Museum, Overton, NV, the Boulder City Art Guild Gallery in the Boulder Dam Hotel, Boulder City, NV, and in the Hoover Dam Hotel, Boulder City, NV.

p.s. My windows over my french doors still do not have stained glass in them

Language Proficiencies
Counties Served