Sunday, August 11, 2019

You ARE the Dolly!

When cutting crucial pieces where alignment is of the utmost importance, it's always best to grind your pieces first and then finish cutting the sections that need to  line up.   Eyes are a great example of this technique.  In the picture below the red dot represents where the eye should reside for the hummingbird. 

Since a split lies across two pieces of glass it's best to forget the eye and just grind it as if the eye doesn't exist (for now).  The pieces should be ground together as the pattern below shows.  Once everything fits you can use the small 1/8th inch grinding wheel to grind half of a circle on one of  the pieces and then after repositioning it you just mark where the second half circle should go and then grind it.   This ensures that everything will come together perfectly.

If you were to grind the half circles before the rest of the pieces fit together you would most likely end up with an eye that doesn't line up, very much like in the picture below.

Belinda finished her Horse and Flag Window and her work on it is wonderful.  She challenged herself with this design from start to finish and the end result shows that she's not one to back away from a challenge.  There are sections that she's not completely thrilled with but that's how it is whenever you make a window-- there's always something that only you will ever see that you wish you could change.  And that's true of ALL of the windows we make!

Betty's  Iris and Lily Window was a pattern that I was completely neutral about but after seeing it completed I have to say that I absolutely love it.  If that isn't a glowing review for someone's work then I don't know what is!  I love her colors, and her craftsmanship just highlights the piece.

Susan D's Tribute Window is officially finished and her work on this is flawless.   Add to that the fact that Susan drew up her own pattern from a photograph and you can understand why this is such an impressive accomplishment for her.    This gets a thumbs up indeed!

Linda F completed  her Cactus Suncatcher and it's as cute as can be.   Sometimes size plays a factor in how a project looks and the smaller you go the better things tend to work out.   However, it works the other way in the opposite direction because you can only enlarge something so much before it takes on an odd appearance. 

Martha came  in and touched up the soldering on her large Tulip Hanging Piece.  This could easily have been  window but there would be so many lead lines running up to the top edge that it's been left open to avoid all those unsightly lines.  Presentation is a major part of the stained glass process.


Cindy's latest Birds on a Wire hanging is, as always, colorful and exciting.  She can really fly through the creation process of this project and even all of those tiny round eyes don't scare Cindy anymore!

Jeannette began this Shark Scuba Dive Flag Window by cutting it out at home and then she brought it into class to see how much she could grind.   By the end of the class she had it all fitting together perfectly.   Placing the shark logo underwater gives us the best of both worlds by representing a shark in the wild while also signifying the flag emblem.


Betty also got the center portion of her sunflower panel ground so it won't be long before we see this hanging up.  All she needs to do is cut the border (which can't be done on a strip cutter because the corners are curved) and then solder it.  The end is near!

And then we have Linda F who is working on a Double Sunflower Window that runs horizontally.  Although we've seen this pattern made in the past it's not nearly as popular as the vertical version.   Looking at this I can't understand why that's the case because this looks great!

Susan R has begun work on a very intense Swan Pattern.  This is only 7 inches wide and that means that some of those Swan feathers will only be about an eighth of an inch wide!  With the water having been all cut out the fun is about to begin!


This delicate Rose Window has always been a favorite of mine and Jeanne L's rendition of it doesn't do anything to change my mind about it at all.   With just one one border left to grind and tack into place Jeanne will be soldering this before you know it.

Patrice has upped the ante on her rendition of the Umbrella Lady Window by adding trim to the dress.  You would think that a change that small wouldn't make much of a difference but after seeing this I have to say that I wouldn't make this pattern any other way.  I love when a student takes something, runs with it,  and makes it better that it was!


Lara got the head and body of her large Peacock Window all assembled as well as the two flowers and branches!  That means that she's ready to begin cutting out her background glass which, with a little luck, will be accomplished when she returns next week.

Linda L is ready to start soldering her large Owl Lawn Ornament now that she got it all wrapped while in class this week.   There was a slight accident with one of the pieces surrounding the owl's right eye (that *I* broke, not Linda) but that's and easy fix that won't stop this project from being completed upon her return..

Rowena has her Flowing Window all tacked together now and even has the front side completely soldered.   She was looking for a pattern that suited someone's personality and friends that have see this have already told her that she hit the nail on the head with this piece.  There's something very peaceful about it that just makes you feel relaxed....


With the front side of her Heron Window all soldered, the only thing that Melissa has to do is add some brass channel around the edges of this window and then solder the back side (although not necessarily in that order). I have a sneaking suspicion that we will see this with light behind it in our next post!


Tasha's Poppy Window is a project that was SO very close to being completed.   Another 45 minutes would have finished this off because the only thing left to do was to color the lead.  Tasha wants the lead to contrast against the white so she's going to use black patina which takes about 45 minutes to set.  That means that she'll color this when she comes back in and then start working on soldering her Umbrella lady.

Mary Grace started this U.S. Air Force Logo Window and already has the logo all cut out.   This is a window that we will make by tacking together the logo and then cut out the background.   It's rare to make a window this way but if  the subject matter is essentially a suncatcher (like this is) then it's best to work this way.

Angie's  LSU and Tiger Eye Window all came together this week as the bottom and top sections were joined with a common border surrounding them.   Angie got the front side soldered while in class and only has the back side left to go now.

Mary Grace also finished soldering her Flower Window but had no time to wash it and color it so she's leaving that part for next week.   Look to see this completed and lit up when we return.

Here's yet another window that only needs to be be washed and patinaed before it can go home for the last time.  Tracey (like Tasha) will be using black patina on this which means that she'll need to let it sit for 45 minutes.   When there's only 2 minutes left in class it's not a good time to start that process.  For all intents and purposes I'm calling this a finished project.  Let's hope that Tracey isn't a grinch about the whole thing!   (I only say that because her next window will be The Grinch Who Stole Christmas!)

Susan D began cutting glass on this 8 inch circular Boat Suncatcher.  There are a lot of pieces in this small project but the end result is always beautiful.  As you can't see, Susan has her white sails and the clear background glass cut out already.  Next week she'll apply some colors and then things will be more visible.

Carol came in and started a Bumble Bee Lawn Ornament and as you can see she's ready to start wrapping her pieces already since she has them all cut AND ground!

Mary said that it was time to take a bit of a break and do something quick and easy.  This decision led her to making her first Butterfly Lawn Ornament which she now has all cut out and ground.    If this is wrapped when she comes back in she'll easily be able to finish upon her return to class.

Barbara H is starting a Wisteria Window and although the actual pattern is almost 6 foot tall Barbara will be cutting it down substantially.  Hers will be about 2 foot tall and simply stop at the bottom of the second cluster of flowers as shown in the picture below.  Will that make it any less beautiful?  No, not at all!


So there you have it, another week of classes under our belt!


Monday, August 5, 2019

The End Is Nigh Upon Us

We're still running behind schedule here as these projects are actually from two weeks ago.   Hopefully we'll get caught up soon.  So let's jump right into things here.

Carol's Three Owls panel is complete and looking as wise as ever.  Later on we'll see more birds in a similar pose but this is a first for these and Carol did a bang up job on them.

Bird is the word as Susan R finished her 3D Bird on a Leaf suncatcher.   She's going to put these (yep, she plans on making more of them) in her flower pots.   When you see this made again it will be in different colors and we're going to change the leaf that it sits on a bit to make it even more sturdy.  Sometimes you just can't be sure about something until you make it.   Not that this has any problems, we'd already adjusted the original pattern to make it stronger but now I see a better way...

Linda F made this absolutely CHARMING LSU Suncatcher from the standard pattern that we normally use.  The only difference is that rather than having it run 22 inches wide, this one is only around 9 inches wide.  Honestly, it's the cutest thing to see in person!

Jeannette completed her Magnolia Window and decided to surround it with a double border.   The thinner, inner border's  color was chosen by taking a little used color that was used in the magnolia itself-- that being the center portion of the flower.   Did that work out perfectly or what!

Carol's latest Spinner is a mix of bevels and red glass with a few dichroic bevels thrown in around the corners of the Spinner. A lot of these are being made on Facebook and everyone is asking about how you make the Jig to position the pieces but Carol skipped the Jig and does it all by hand.   I don't see why anyone would need to do it otherwise as EVERYTHING fits together perfectly as you can see for yourself.

Barbara H's latest Butterfly Lawn Ornament was finished this week and I think she's getting the hang of these now.  She has a few more to make but she's decided to take a break and move along to something else before doing any more Butterflies.

Annette's Psychedelic 70's Poodle is really moving along quickly.   It just goes to prove that when you really look forward to making a window you can achieve things more quickly.   Once the pooch itself is cut out the rest of this will be a piece of cake!


Speaking of psychedelic, Becky B's Mutant Fish Window is coming together so much that you can see what it is now.  She's decided to use green globs for the eyes and believe it or not, the body and the fins have all been cut out  from just one sheet of glass.   This shows how important it is to consciously position your pattern pieces onto your glass.  By paying attention to the colors that run through the sheet you can make one sheet of glass look like 3 different colors!

Betty has two windows in the works this week and her Iris and Lilly Window is very near completion.  She only has the back side of it left to solder and then it will be very well behind her.   Her Sunflower Panel isn't as far along but it's close now!  Betty doesn't like to have less than two projects in the works as you can see in the picture below.

Kerry's tractor Window is also well under way and the glass he is using for the tires is so perfect that, well, you just couldn't do any better.   The engine section of this will be the trickiest part but with a little patience and accurate cutting it won't be bad.  This Tractor is going to look great.


Jeanne M's Patriotic Heart Window is all cut out and she was able to grind all of her pieces and then wrap them as well.  She's decided to put this into a window so we'll see what she decides to use as a background glass upon her return.

Tasha's been busy working on two different windows and has one of them all set for solder already.   Her Lady With Umbrella Window looks stunning and her Poppies Window is just about ready to go home with her for the final time.

Melissa's Heron Window has officially been ground and it's even wrapped for the most part. She even got the eyeball ground into place which is something that we don't like to do until the window is ground to prevent the eye from not lining up.   In fact, I think that may be a great tip to go over next week!

With the front of her Patriotic Horse Window all soldered and only the reverse side to do, Belinda may very well complete this upon her return.   I can't wait to see this hanging up with some light behind it!

Linda L also started and finished grinding this cute Cactus Suncatcher that she found on the internet.   We added the sun so that the 'arm' of the cactus wouldn't just fall off.   This is another perfect example of how some patterns that you find online won't actually work in real life situations!

Cindy has made AMAZING progress on her Birds On A Wire Window.  When she came in there was still some wrapping to do but that has been done and this is now ready for some solder!

Rowena has started a design that can only be described as 'flowing'.   Utilizing soft colors and pleasant graceful curves, this project will be peaceful indeed.   She began cutting it today in class and ended up walking out he door with all of her glass cut and some grinding having been starting!

Jeff has slid on over to the second 3rd of his current project.  With the sunflowers behind him he's now working on the humming bird and dragonfly center portion of his window.


Well, MiMi has reached the next stage of her Seafood Window and now that she has all of the seafood ground she's going to be spending her time with some foil nearby as she wraps all of these pieces.  Once that's done she can tack it together and get to work on her Newsprint background glass.

The front side of Shawn's Stylized Fleur de Lis  Window was completely soldered this week so she then turned it over and went to work on the back of the window as well.   This is very close now because all that's left to do is a few touch ups.  We'll see this completed the next time she walks in the door.

Susan D's Memorial Window is just about finished as well.   She has both sides soldered and only needs to smooth out a few rough spots and then attach some zinc channel.  Once that's done we can call this finished and get some light behind it!

Next we look at another LSU window but this is just the bottom portion of Angie's Tiger Eyes/LSU Window.   Now that the bottom section has been cut and ground Angie will be able to attach the top section along with her borders and channel thus finishing her latest project.

So that wraps this up for this post which is still a week behind.  There's one more to go to bring us up to date but I have all the pictures ready for posting so hopefully we'll have two posts this week.