Patti Lenckus: Making The Most of Mosaics

Featured Artists

In keeping with our recent theme of Recycled Art, we're featuring glass artist Patti Lenckus. Her scrap glass mosaics are made from leftover glass otherwise headed for the landfill. Read how she got started in this Earth-friendly endeavor.

Stained Glass Artist Patti Lenckus of Norman, Oklahoma has been saving her scraps for years. She has a five-shelf storage cart with bins, and she meticulously divides each piece of scrap by its color. Last year, she started using this glass to create mosaics.

My first project was a picture of a flower vase created on an unfinished wooden tray that I found at a local craft store, Patti says. I had so much fun that I decided to teach a mosaic class at the local art center to share what I had learned. I taught my students to make pictures from scrap glass on a piece of floor tile.

Patti also taught a class called Glass on Glass in which her students created flowers on glass trays.

She even found a use for the tiniest pieces of leftover glass. I use them in the image discs on the end of my kaleidoscopes, she says.

She finds a use for all of her scraps regardless of texture or color. Bright, opaque glass is good for using on things like wood or pots or even floors and walls, she says. And glass you can see through is good for glass-on-glass projects like clear plates (which can be hung in windows) clear vases and Krafty blocks.

Patti encourages her students to alter their patterns to reflect their own personalities. She is always amazed at the results.

One of my students used different shades of the same color to add depth to the petals of the flowers, she says. Another used random colors on the petals and a solid background. It ended up looking like impressionist art.

Patti finds inspiration in childrens coloring books, stained glass pattern books, and photos shes taken during her travels around the world.

Photography was my first love. It was something I could do while watching my three children, Patti says. Last summer I was privileged to travel to Barcelona, Spain where I got to view some of the most beautiful mosaics ever made, many by Gaudi. Now that was inspiring!

Patti recycles glass because, aside from being beautiful, glass is incredibly expensive. The thought of all that beautiful glass just sitting in a landfill breaks my heart, she remarks. And using my scraps for other projects makes it financially possible for me to do many more projects.

Patti says shes encouraged by local artists in her area who have created huge projects in churches and homes made entirely from donated scrap glass.

Patti teaches at the Norman Firehouse Art Center in Norman, Oklahoma. This is a community center where all forms of art are taught to students of all ages and abilities. For more information on Patti and her recycled mosaics, visit You can also find her on Facebook at CP Art Glass or on Her email address is [email protected]

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Sheila M.  •  February 21, 2011
Great work Patti. I do mosaics also and my favorite is taking old furniture that people throw away and turning it into something beautiful to be used again.
Julie Bedford

Julie Bedford

Julie graduated from the University of Florida with a degree in Communications. She worked as a marketing director and graphic designer before coming to work for Delphi as social media manager. Her mother is an artist and inspired Julie's love for art and creativity at a young age. Her hobbies include writing, crafting and social networking.