The Campaign for the Advent

Restoration of Stained Glass Windows
Phase II of the restoration project (2007) included the restoration of windows in the north and south transepts. The work was done by two studios, Cohoes Design Glass Associates in Cohoes, NY, and Serpentino Stained Glass in Needham, MA. Our thanks to Serpentino for hosting staff from the Advent, Shawmut Design & Construction, and Building Conservation Associates at their studios in May 2007. The windows were completed and put in place in July 2007.

St Columba

St John Chrysostom

St Ambrose


Perhaps it's a good thing we didn't know a colony of wasps was living on one of the windows. (Cue the "we're not WASPs, we're Anglo-Catholics!" jokes.)

Pieces of masking tape mark damage from a BB gun fired through this window sometime in the 1960's. See the next two photos for closeups.

Damage from a BB pellet.

The hole is about a quarter-inch across, but this close-up shows the extensive damage to the surrounding glass.


Completed South transept window (the Apostles)

Completed North transept window (Great Women of the Church)

In March 2006 two of the stained-glass windows on the south wall of the church were removed for restoration. The photos presented here are courtesy our conservation consultant, Julie Sloan (www.jlsloan.com). The text is adapted from her description of the images.

Update: The restored windows were returned to place in September 2006 and fully unveiled with the removal of the scaffolding in November.
closeup photo of cracked stained glass
(Note: this image has been rotated 90° from the original vertical for display purposes.)
There is very little broken glass, and most of it appears to have been broken when the windows were originally installed. This and other broken pieces will be replaced to match.
closeup photo of cracked leading
This photo shows cracks in the leading (known as came - see detail under the halo photo below), caused by metal fatigue and indicating that the leading is at the end of its life. It cannot withstand any bending, which is a danger for the windows still in place because the metal expands and contracts a lot with thermal cycles and flexes with wind pressure. The leading will have to be completely replaced.
closeup photo of dirt staining on window
This shows the effect of dirt on the glass. See below for the same detail after restoration.
another close-up photo of dirt stains on glass
The dirt is crust on top of the glass, varying in density from quite translucent to absolutely opaque. It's ordinary dirt - soot, airborne grunge, some glazing compound possibly.
closeup photo of paint on window surfaces
There is fired paint on the exterior surfaces of some pieces (this is not particularly unusual).
closeup photo of halo
The metal pieces in the windows are called cames. They are H-shaped and the parallel legs are called flanges. In this detail, the cames have been widened on the interior side by soldering on flanges cut from cames. All of the lead in the windows is the same width, but in some places it looks wider because of the added metal. This is an artistic decision, not a structural one. They will be reproduced in the reglazing.
detail of angel from St Ignatius window
In a few places, the flanges are cut into shapes. In this extraordinary detail from the St Ignatius window, the flange is cut with the angel's profile. This is the only figure thus treated; in the other angels in the window, the profile is created in paint.

September 2006: The "angel with a dirty face" seen above has been cleaned and restored.

Compare this detail to the pre-restoration version immediately above. Note, the difference in overall color tone is due to lighting conditions rather than cleaning.
November 2006: The two restored windows unveiled in all their glory!

St Athanasius

St Ignatius