This was a very fun to commission to work on. I was asked to make protective clamshell boxes for surveys made on the stained glass windows in the Diocese of Hereford. The parameters were that they would need to sit well on library shelves, but otherwise was left with creative freedom in the design.
The boxes are being given to three separate libraries, so will not be seen together again and have to each stand on their own visually. But I nonetheless wanted them to be a set that clearly belong together – and perhaps if they are ever reunited for the whole picture to become clear again.
I based the overall design on one of the windows included in the survey. I simplified and stylised the artwork of the original window in order for it to work as inlays, and for each box to work as an individual abstract design.
I wanted the decorated boxes to reference the contents, so it was important for the inlaid material to look or feel like stained glass. They were to be leather covered, but leather wouldn’t do for the inlays. After a few experiments with vellum I was able to achieve the results I was after with a combination of acrylic ink and a light beeswax coating.
Inside the box is a suede-covered tray built to hold a USB stick filled with the images and report of the windows in Hereford, and a plaquette with an inset to hold a small booklet with explanatory information. The plaquette fits snugly inside the tray, protecting the contents and holding the box closed.