Monday, January 13, 2020

Do You Do Nails Here?

When cutting inside curves the first thing we do is cut a straight line from the starting and ending points of the curves.  This is called cutting 'Point To Point' and should ALWAYS be done before attempting an inside curve.   The second step is to take a nice graceful curve or two out of the glass before attempting to cut the curve itself.  

In the picture below the orange line represents the graceful curve I would first cut into the glass to help get the final curve cut out.  There are no sudden turns and it's somewhat shallow.   This gracefulness helps the glass to break correctly.

This next picture shows what I see too many people doing.   The orange line is ragged, en-even, and has sudden turns in it.   This is the perfect recipe for a broken piece of glass.   Take your time and if you have to don't be afraid to draw a line onto the glass to guide you.

Lastly, even after the orange line was cut I'd still go in a little deeper before attempting that final true cut.

Okay then, our first completed piece this week is of a Wedding Plaque that Jeannette made as a gift.  She started by sandwiching the invitation between two pieces of glass and then foiling them together so she ended up with one (thick piece).  Then she just added borders while building it upside down so that the invitation is flush with the front.  After washing it carefully she had this beautiful wedding keepsake that will be cherished forever.

Jeanne M finished her first of three(?) Mardi Grass Mask Suncatchers and judging by how nicely this one turned out I have no doubt that we'll see even more of them in the days leading up to Mardi Gras. Jeanne takes her time, never rushing, and always turns out quality work.


Jeannette also put the finishing touches on her latest Cardinal Suncatcher which was actually a repair that required some major work to get back together again.  Looking at its picture you'd never know that this was literally ripped apart into three pieces to repair.

Annette's begun her next project and although it's hard to see right now I'll tell you that it's another Christmas Window that will match the happy Grinch window that she made just in the Saint Nick of time for Christmas last year.  (Was it really that long ago?)  I'm not going to tell you what it is this week but if you can't guess then you'll have to come back and read our next post when I reveal just what it is .  The hints above should be enough though as I can already see him in the glass that she got cut out this week.

Jan has begun making a Red Fish  and got all of her glass cut out in just one class.   Well, actually that's a bit of a lie because when she began grinding she realized that two of the leaves are missing but that's trivial and will be rectified when she returns next week. Meanwhile, it's on to grinding for Jan.

It's been a while since we saw a Peacock Window being made so Angie has 'volunteered' to make the newest addition to what has become one of our Bayou Salé GlassWork staples.  She wrapped her bird this week, tacked it together and then got the background cut, ground, wrapped and tacked as well.   That leaves just a border and some solder left to go on this.


Rowena is making a Mardi Gras  inspired window and she plans on decking it out with all the trimmings by adding beads to it.  Now that sounds simple enough but let me tell you that cutting out all those round circles and then cutting out the background to match it is very, very challenging.   But I know if anyone can do it, Rowena can!

Martha's begun working on a window featuring all clear glass.   There will only be three (possibly two) textures in the entire window but mark my words when I tell you that this is going to sparkle.  With just background left to cut she's moving along at a nice pace with this project.

Linda F's Witch Window is so very near completion.  After finishing up with her cutting Linda moved along to the grinding process and with only 3 pieces left to go she'll easily get a border on this upon her return.  Who know-- this may even be finished when we see it again.

Mary Grace made some major headway on her round Anchor Window as she completed the rest of her cutting and then even got most of it ground as well!   That's a productive class and with just a few pieces left to grind she'll surely be wrapping her pieces upon her return.

Kerry also managed to accomplish a ton of work on his Beer Window as he completed grinding and then wrapping all of his pieces.  Then he tacked it all together for good measure.   Next week he'll be adding a border and soldering for sure.

Susan R worked on her Seafood Window over the holidays and now has all of the subject matter all cut and ground.   She's even very nearly finished wrapping all of her pieces but that process is painstakingly slow due to the fact that most of her pieces are microscopically small!   And that's why this window already looks as great as it does.


Tracey's Magnolia is another round window  that's being worked on-- one of three in fact.  She has just a few more pieces of the leaves left to go and then a small amount background glass which I'm sure will be accomplished upon her return.   After that she'll move along to the grinder.


Jeff has decided to forgo a border on his window which is fine because it's going to be installed into a window opening rather than suspended with chains.   He was very careful about the size of his window while he was working on it and a small piece of brass channel along all four sides finished it off beautifully.  He spent his time in class soldering and has the front side just about completed already.   His soldering is perfection and there's a slight chance that this will be completed upon his return.


Shawn finished grinding all of her prices for her stunning Sunflower and Cardinal Window and then moved along to the wrapping phase of her window's creation.   As you can see she got a lot of it done already  and she's taken it home with her so she can possibly get some wrapping done there throughout the week.  The sheet music for 'Here Come's the Sun' has been fired onto the glass that Shawn will use for the sunflower's center and once this is tacked together we will cut that the center for a perfect fit.


Betty has been busy working on 3 pairs of Cardinals which will involve some tedious wire work.  Before any wires get attached she'll have to finish all six of her cardinals completely-- that means all the grinding wrapping and soldering needs to be completed.  This makes attaching the wire much easier.


Mary's been as busy as a bee working on her own Sunflower Window.   Now that everything has been ground and fitting together perfectly she'll be able to begin foiling (wrapping) each of those pieces.  She's done excellent work on this and you can clearly see that in the picture below.


MiMi's Circular Heron Window is creating quite a stir on the Facebook Stained Glass pages and you can easily see why.  She got most of the grinding on this completed before calling it a night and I know for a fact that she's got it all ground and and ready for foil.  I'm still unsure if she'll be going with a border or not on this and that's something that we'll discuss when she comes back in.

Cindy began soldering her clear textured Sunburst Window  and when class ended she had finished the second side of her project.   This would have been completed  but she wants to color the solder black which means that she'll need to let this sit for about 45 minutes with black patina on it before she can wash and wax it.   So, for all intents and purposes, this is a finished window that we'll see featured next week.


And lastly we take a look at the window that Barbara H is working on.   This week she traced and cut out the paper pattern for a Cross Window that always looks great.  She has her 9 bevels set into place and her glass all picked out so when she comes back in she'll begin cutting glass.

And that as they say is that!


Monday, January 6, 2020

Easing In To It

Happy New Year and welcome to our first post of 2020.  We only had 2 classes towards the end of the week so this is going to be a quick one. 

These Linked Bevel Squares always turn heads when they are hanging in the sun so I decided to make another set.   They look complex but in reality the hardest thing about  them is figuring out how to wrap them safely for transportation since they tend to flip around a lot when they aren't hanging up.  Lots of careful wrapping is the answer along with a box that has enough room to accommodate the bevels and all of that wrapping!

MiMi completed cutting out all of the glass for her Round Heron Window and then she moved on over to a grinder to begin fitting all of her pieces in place.  This is going to be a gorgeous window and I think Mimi is going to have it completed before you know it.

Roxane is back for the new year and she's resumed work on the Penguin Window that she started in the midst of 2019.  When she came in this week she still had grinding to do but by the time she left she had everything not only ground but wrapped as well.  She certainly hasn't lost her touch!


Jeanne M decided that she wanted to make a Mardi Gras Mask Suncatcher and got all of her glass cut out and ground.  She's begun wrapping her pieces and only has 2 more left to go before she can tack this together and then add a nose in the center.  Yes, I suspect that this will be completed upon her return.


Angie began working on a Peacock Panel and by the time class was finished she had cut out all of her glass.  Her next step will take place in front of a glass grinder and since Angie has proven to be a quick grinder I'm thinking a background will be added to this before you know it.


Jeannette is working on a Framed Wedding Invitation and in just three hours she got the invitation sandwiched between two pieces of clear glass, got a first border attached, and then got the final border attached with a trim of brass channel along the edges for good measure.   There's no doubt that this will be completed upon her return.

Kerry is making a Beer Window and started this while he was home.   When he came in to class he had most (but not all) of it cut out.  By the time he left class not only was it all cut out but it was very close to being completely ground as well.    I think Kerry has the hang of this now.

And last but not least we take a look at Lara's window.  I've always loved this design and her colors are perfect.  Because of the straight lines that run throughout the background we both decided that it would be best to cut the background after the rest of this has been wrapped and tacked.  And wouldn't you know it, Lara got it all wrapped before calling it a night!  Look for background to be added to this when we see it again.

Yes, it was a small post but next week will surely see things return back to normal because all 30 of our students are expected to return to class and thirty students can yield a LOT of windows!!

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Thursday, December 26, 2019

The Circle Of Life

All of our students knew her and it is with great sadness and regret that I have to say that Miss Ethel (Effels) passed away on Christmas Day.  December was a hard month for her but on the 24th the sun was shining and Ethel was bathing in those warm sun beams as she watched us work on the new Kiln Building.  All the while we worked she was as affectionate as a young kitten.  At one point we said that she might be coming around again as we picked her up and and petted her throughout the day.   She even got a good brushing in (which she loved). All in all it was a perfect day for her and I have no regrets about how we spent that last day with her.  She will be missed.

Annette got her Happy Grinch finished just in time for the Holidays!  With his heart three sizes bigger than the last Grinch we saw, this one's literally bursting out of his stained glass borders.  Annette is flying through projects already and she'll be starting on a Dog Window soon.  Just wait until you see that one!

MiMi's Cotton Boll is officially complete and MiMi now knows how to make rounded corners the smart way (by NOT using a paper pattern).  Her use of amber glass for the border is a perfect choice since it matches a small amount of amber found within the actual subject matter.   That's always a safe way to choose a color for your border.

Carol was fretting about making these two Crosses as an order and right up until she handed them over she was worried that disappointment would follow.  But she was wrong!  Instead everyone was absolutely thrilled with her work (as we ALL predicted).   I mean look at these windows-- they are flawless. And now another student wants to make one.  That's what I call inspirational!

Jeanne M's Cardinal Suncatcher has turned many heads in class and now there are plenty of copies of this pattern floating around throughout our different classes so we may be seeing a few more of these.  I have to say that this is a wonderful design but it's the wire work that brings it all together both literally AND figuratively!  Jeanne has done a great job here.

Kerry's Pelican is ready to find a home in a window and it also turned out great.  I especially liked the fact that he wasn't afraid to use something other than blue for the sky because it's artistic decisions like these that can turn an ordinary design into a spectacular one.  And kudos to Kerry on his soldering abilities.   He really upped his game with this window.

Look at the beautiful lines in Linda F's LSU Window.   You couldn't ask for straighter lines and that's just ONE of the reasons that this window looks fantastic.  The other reason is because she used a purple glass that is different from the background for both the Fleur De Lis and for the Tiger stripes.   Had she used the same purple as her background the tiger stripes and the Fleur De Lis would have blended into the background and lost much of their definition.  However, what she's accomplished below is perfection.

Betty made her own Football themed window this week and hopefully the Saints fan that gets this is thrilled with it because that double border that surrounds the Fleur de Lis wasn't an easy accomplishment.  Of course Betty persevered and the end result is the gorgeous window that you see below.

Patrice's Uterus is certainly a conversation starter.  Why a uterus?  Because that's what the customer wants and that's what it all comes down to-- what the customer wants.  All in all you can't fault this window.  It honestly looks just like an illustration in a medical book. 

Angie made her own version of the size 3 Grinch with the only differences being the single border and the background glass.  You just can't lose with a happy Grinch!

Belinda's Church Window looks like it's almost completely cut out already.   Well, all of the cuts that she can make right now have been cut however, the wooden slats that make the church itself will be cut after she's got this all fitting together. We'll show you what that's all about in a later post.

Linda F started working on a Witch Window and although it's December 2019 right now, I'm saying that she's early for next year when this will be completed.   With just the four pieces of her background left to grind I'm thinking that his will be finished before you know it.

Lara's Victorian themed Window is moving right along and she's begun grinding her pieces already.   This window is about color and Lara has always had an eye for that.   Look out because this will be featured as a finished window before you know it.

And here's another window that is already colorful and impressive.   Melissa's begun grinding her Peacock Tail Window and has the first of 12(?) sections ground and fitting together perfectly.   A repeating pattern like this demands perfection because if just a single piece is off it will stand out like a sore thumb.  Mark my words though, this will be stunning because I have complete faith in Melissa

Okay so here we look at Shawn's Sunflower and Cardinal Window which she said would take her half of next year just to grind and do you know what?  It was almost been completely ground in just one night!   That's right-- Shawn only has a few more Sunflower petals left to grind along with a few pieces of background  and she'll be ready to begin wrapping which will surely take place in the first class of the new year, not the sixth month.  She's got this!

Now that we have an official finished measurement Cindy was able to get her border pieces all cut out.  They've also been ground and now she only needs to wrap and tack them so we can get a channel around this window and finish this up!

Jeff tacked together his Flower Scenery Window and is only missing one small piece of which no one has the glass for.  :-(  It's on order though so hopefully he'll have it in his hands during our next class.  Once that's done (or even if it isn't) it will be time to add a border.

Here's Barbara H's Bee Lawn Ornament all cut, ground and ready to be wrapped.  If she comes back to class with this wrapped she may very well finish this the next time we see her.  Alas, with Christmas and New Years here I surely won't hold it against her if she doesn't get this wrapped.

Jeanne L has been working on a Fruit Basket Window but I never seem to get a picture of it.   This week I snapped this while she was removing all of her pieces from the pattern so that she could pack it up and take it home with her.  Look closely and you'll see 4 pieces in place. 

Tracey is about to embark on a round Magnolia Window journey!   This is a stunning window when it's completed and I have no doubt that Tracey will do a beautiful job on this project.


And Jan has begun working on a variation of this Red Fish pattern.   She traced it out and has her paper pattern all cut apart and ready to trace onto glass.  In our next post you'll see this with some color on it.

And that ends the calendar year of 2019.  We'd like to wish everyone a happy New Year, a Merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, and everything and anything else that applies.  We'll be back in about 3 weeks.

Bayou Salé GlassWorks