Sashiko Fireplace Mosaic

This glass fireplace mosaic was inspired by Sashiko, a Japanese embroidery technique using white cotton thread on indigo dyed fabric. Sashiko was often used to reinforce and strengthen clothing and functional textiles to extend their utility, and it similarly suits this 100 year old house whose fireplace needed help. The original tile pavers were discolored and chipped and the client wanted something modern that would also suit the 100 year old Craftsman interior. We created the mosaic in our workshop and mounted it on two pieces of cement backboard for the face and hearth. 

We also made the fireplace screen. We used high-temperature magnets to hold the screen in place. Since this is a gas insert, access is rarely needed; the screen simply releases with a gentle pull from a handle milled into the underside of the top rail. The screen also obscures the less-than-convincing imitation logs. 

See more work here.  

The Stained Glass Art of Bruce Porter

Traditional building guild Artistic License is hosting my illustrated talk, ‘The Stained Glass Art of Bruce Porter’, on Wednesday, March 1st @ 7pm at The Hillside Club, 2286 Cedar Street, Berkeley, CA.

Bruce Porter (1865-1953) is perhaps most well-known for the windows at the Swedenborgian Church in San Francisco and the formal gardens he designed at Filoli. A true Renaissance man, he was at the center of Bay Area cultural life at the turn of the twentieth century. This talk will cover the artistry and timeline of Bruce Porter’s first career as a stained glass artist. Found in churches, private homes and exclusive clubs around California, this is a comprehensive look at Porter’s glasswork and will present the context and artistic influences that inspired his unique approach to the craft.

Artistic License is a group of skilled professional artisans dedicated to historic architectural restoration and newly interpreted period design. Working in the tradition of historic artisan guilds, Artistic License members provide a wide range of services and products from architectural design and building restoration to period furnishings and fine finishes.

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Bruce Porter in Coronado

I’ll be presenting a talk on Bruce Porter’s stained glass at Christ Church Coronado at a free, September 17 at 4:00 p.m. A reception will follow.

Christ Church is located at the corner of Ninth Street and C Avenue. Parking is available in the church lot directly opposite the campus on C Avenue. For more information you can contact the parish office – 619-435-4561 or www.christchurchcoronado.org.

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Bruce Porter at The Swedenborgian Church

On Saturday, I’m giving a talk on the glass work of Bruce Porter, an artist, writer and designer of stained glass windows in San Francisco at the turn of the century.

This talk will cover the artistry and timeline of Bruce Porter’s first career as a stained glass artist. Found in churches, private homes and exclusive clubs around California, this is a comprehensive look at Porter’s glasswork and will present the context and artistic influences that inspired his unique approach to the craft.

The Swedenborgian Church is at 2107 Lyon Street at Washington Street in San Francisco. Preceding the talk, a complementary dinner will be served at 6 p.m. followed by a lecture in the sactuary at 7 p.m. Childcare will be provided. RSVP for dinner required: office@sfswedenborgian.org

More info here.

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What we do and how we do it

Filmmaker Frazer Bradshaw did an excellent job on a short about my work. It shows the process from original idea to finished installation. Enjoy!

Japanese Maple Entry

We recently installed these custom leaded glass panels into another one of Shawn Kammerer’s extremely well crafted doors. Check out his work here.

Japanese Maple stained glass entry - Theodore Ellison Designs

Japanese Maple stained glass entry - Theodore Ellison Designs

The Stained Glass Art of Bruce Porter

On Saturday, February 27th, I’m presenting a lecture on the glass work of Bruce Porter, an artist, writer and designer of stained glass windows in San Francisco at the turn of the century. This is the culmination of my years-long research project and I’m looking forward to sharing the story of his work, which is now nearly forgotten.

This lecture will cover the artistry and timeline of Bruce Porter’s first career as a stained glass artist. Found in churches, private homes and exclusive clubs around California, I’ve assembled the first-ever comprehensive look at Porter’s glasswork and will present the context and artistic influences that inspired his unique approach to the craft. This lecture coincides with an art exhibit from Filoli’s permanent collection : Beyond the Garden: Select Works by Bruce Porter.

Beyond The Garden : The Stained Glass Art of Bruce Porter
An Illustrated lecture by Theodore Ellison
Saturday, February 27th @ 3pm
Filoli, 86 Cañada Road, Woodside, CA
Free with paid admission

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Oak Tree Leaded Glass Entry

This project started with a visit to the site in Tehachapi, California. Walking the site with the client, it became clear that the subject of the window would be the old Oak trees that grew from rock out-croppings with a background inspired by the sweeping landscape of Central California.

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Oak tree stained glass entry - Theodore Ellison Designs - photo courtesy of Old California Lighting

photo courtesy of Old California Lighting

Oak tree stained glass entry - Theodore Ellison Designs

Oak tree stained glass entry - Theodore Ellison Designs

Sullivanesque Leaded Glass Windows

Inspired by the ornamental glass designs of Louis Sullivan and Purcell and Elmslie, these windows were commissioned for a home here in Oakland where a balance of privacy and light transmission was desired. I localized the design by creating an oak and acorn motif rather than the acanthus leaf favored by Sullivan. By using lead came instead of copper foil, these windows took considerably longer to build, but the result was truer to the work of Louis Millet, the glass artist who helped Sullivan develop his designs.

Sullivanesque leaded glass window - Theodore Ellison Designs



Sullivanesque leaded glass window - Theodore Ellison Designs

The design drawn to scale.



Sullivanesque leaded glass window - Theodore Ellison Designs

Carrie cutting and numbering each piece.



Sullivanesque leaded glass window - Theodore Ellison Designs

Just before their final cementing and patina.



The completed windows installed.

Nepal Earthquake Disaster Relief

Theodore Ellison has partnered with Tiger Rug to create a line of high-quality wool and silk designs handmade in Nepal. While the team and production facility in Kathmandu survived the earthquake, the recovery effort will require international assistance. Through the month of May, all proceeds from the Theodore Ellison Collection for Tiger Rug will be forwarded directly to relief efforts in Nepal.

Please visit Tiger Rug for more information.

Theodore Ellison Collection for Tiger Rug - Crawford

Theodore Ellison Collection for Tiger Rug – Crawford

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