When we hear the term "curb appeal" many of us think of how the front yard is landscaped, the way the exterior of the house is painted, or the entryway. Nowadays, though, homeowners are investing in decorative glass or stained glass overlay products that create exceptional and uniquely-designed windows and doors that are eye-catching from the inside and out. The exquisite look creates privacy while at the same time offering aesthetic appeal to a home.
SGO Designer Glass is a decorative franchise company based in Orange County. The company has 300 affiliates that offer a full range of different types of decorative glass to a wide range of commercial clients as well as homeowners.
"What we provide them with are things like traditional stained glass which is pieces of glass held together with lead," says Nick Neonakis, VP of SGO Designer Glass.
But stained glass isn't tempered and therefore frequently won't meet code because of its lack of durability. So that leaves homeowners unable to use stained glass in certain areas of the house such as shower doors and some windows. So, the company also offers etched, carved, and different types of cast glass that has an overlay applied to it. The overlay is a process that the company invented to give an alternative to traditional stained glass. SGO Designer Glass takes Mylar films, colors and applies texture to them in its factory in Orange County.
"Then those are cut into various shapes and then peeled and literally adhered onto the face of solid tempered glass and then this is finished off with an adhesive-backed-lead-strip system. So when it's done it looks just like traditional stained glass," says Neonakis. The end result with this product is that it will offer added protection and durability because the glass is tempered.
The beauty of this product is that it can, if you want, leave with you when you sell your home. Some additional modifications need to be made, but that way, if you choose a very personal decorative look such as something that has a religious connotation, you can take it down before the house is listed for sale.
"We will have a new piece of glass cut and tempered, put the work onto it, and then we will install the new piece of glass up against the existing old glass in the window and then we have special clip systems that fasten it to the frame. So when the homeowners leave if they so desire they can detach the clips from the frame and take their glass with them," says Neonakis.
It might surprise you to learn that this concept of designing won't save you money over traditional stained glass; in fact, it costs about the same.
"It has a lot of technical properties that traditional stained glass does not have such as [the fact] that it's solid, it's UV protectant, it's airtight, waterproof, etc.," says Neonakis.
This type of overlay product will cost about $100 per square foot depending on the intricacy of the design and other installation considerations. If you opt for the much less expensive alternative -- a sticky, decal type product that adheres to your window, Neonakis says be prepared for vast differences.
"It's a different type of product where that is sort of a cling, stick, decal. The overlay is something that is permanently bonded and fused on to the face of the glass along with bevels and lead and things of that nature. So it's virtually indistinguishable from traditional stained glass," explains Neonakis.
Neonakis says the overlay product takes a few weeks to complete, but the money and time spent are well worth the end result. For more information, visit sgodesignerglass.com.