Monday, June 1, 2020

If You Get It In Mexico It's Yellow

It's tip time!  I see so many many people rushing when cutting up or tracing out their patterns and then they say they'll fix it at the grinder. Sadly the grinder doesn't work that way so please take your time.   If you start out with a pattern piece of the 'circle' on the left you'll never get it to look like the one on the right.   Sure, you can grind the high spots but grinding will only make the low spots lower.  Take your time-- your pattern pieces determine 90% of what your window will look like.

Lara's Flower window was completed this week and, as I knew from the start, it's a nice bright window now that it's got some light behind it.  Lara pointed out numerous 'flaws' to me, but I think she's done another wonderful job.  Besides, the 'flaws' that we the creators see are always minor at best and yes, ALL of my windows have these 'flaws'!  Who makes anything that they are 100% satisfied with??!!

Jeannette's Bayou Scenery Window is almost 3 foot wide so it's a large window.  She was worried about making it any larger by putting on a border but because there are so many lead lines coming out to the edge we were able to skip a border and just surround it with a heavy channel.  Once that was done she washed and colored this Bayou masterpiece.

Roxane's Penguin family was completed and it's nice to see these guys find their way home.  Roxane is so good at making stained glass- I just wish she could be able to get to class more often to exercise those skills!

MiMi made this adorable Rabbit Suncatcher and what else can you say about this cute little thing???  Words fail me!

Bonnie was back and Bonnie accomplished.   When she left class she had this Dragonfly cut, ground and ready to be foiled.  2 days later she came back so I could take this picture of it in its completed state.  She's always been quick and efficient but now she's a trendsetter as well because I had to hand out two of these patterns to the two students who witnessed her make this!


Next up is Mary Grace who is on a Lady Bug Lawn Ornament roll as she knocked out yet another one this week.  She even added more wire filigrees to this one so that the wings could be even fancier.

First up in our projects still under construction we have Susan D's cat who has a name this week: Trouble.  Once she said it I recognized the name but coming up with it on my own, well, I'm old and confused.  Susan got her borders cut and only needs to wrap and attach the final border before we can add some channel and wrap the whole kit and kaboodle up.   This is VERY near completion!

Shelley began working on a Titus Window and got the majority of it cut in just one class.  What is a Titus Window?  Well, it's a window that's based on a painting by an artist named M. Titus!  It's colorful and very avant-garde, don't you think?

Angie came in, cut out, ground, and wrapped a Peacock Window.  Now there's a productive day for you!  She'll tack this and get to the background when she comes back in.  Always a favorite of mine, I may have to make this yet again.

Kerry is back and he resumed his work by standing in from of a grinder for most of the class.  Now he wasn't just 'standing there' because he got the top portion of his Tiger Eyes/LSUall ground.  That means it's ready to be wrapped and then tacked together after which he will cut out the bottom LSU section.

Lisa is moving along at an amazing rate of speed on her Butterfly Window and I saw on Facebook that she has the final top left wing section cut and ground now.  I saw that she was asking whether she should square it off or make it circular.  My opinion is that a circle would look marvelous!  (Not that squaring it off would be bad though.)


With the front side soldered and the back about halfway completed I have no doubt at all that Belinda will be finishing this when she comes back in next week whether she's worked on it at home or not.   This window always gets attention and Belinda's interpretation is turning heads in ALL of our classes.

Jeannette also worked on this Bee Suncatcher after she put the finishing touches on her Bayou Scene Window.   This pattern came with a bevel cluster but I've found that cutting the bee out of regular glass  makes it look even look better than the actual beveled Bee the pattern came with.


Susan R is back and her Seafood Window got its final border attached which means that this window can now get a finished solder bead on it.  The end is near! Since this window is long we also added some Strong Line through the borders to help give it a little more stability.


With everything cut and ground on her Sunrise Window, Cindy is ready to begin foiling all of these pieces.  She started doing that just this week and she's about halfway to the top already.   Next up, a tack job and a border!

Four little Baby Suncatchers are all tacked together and ready to be soldered by Linda L now.    These are perfect Baby Shower gifts and once these are completed Linda will be ready ahead of time for any fun surprises!  We'll easily see these finished upon her return.


Finally there's Martha who finished grinding the background for her Lamp Post Window.  Once she tacked everything together she then got her first border cut out and ground.  She's already picked out the glass for her second border and let me just say that it is perfect, but you'll have to come back next week to see just what it looks like!

We had even more people in our classes this week and next week is the start of June when almost everyone said they'd be returning so we may have a very full blog post when we return.   See you then!

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Monday, May 25, 2020

Old Age And Aspirin

This week our tip is simple. The biggest fear that most students have is choosing colors for their project.  The easiest way to sidestep the issue is to simply copy the colors that someone else already used.  That's fine.  If you like a window the colors may very well be a part of the reason you like it.  However, there are times when you can't match glass and that's when people panic.  When it comes to picking colors there are very few rules.  I often hear, "Can I use this glass with this one?" And the answer is almost invariably 'Yes'.  The only real rule is that you don't want to mix translucent (clear) glass with opaque (solid colors) within the same piece of the subject matter.

Now what does that mean?   Simply put if your window consists of a flower, a stem, some leaves, a flower pot, a sky, and some clouds then you don't want to mix a see through pink and a solid pink for the flower petals.  It's fine to mix different shades of pink within the flower but they should all be either translucent or opaque. Mixing the two creates 'holes' in your work and that should generally be avoided.

That said, the sky can be clear glass because it's not part of the flower.  The stem and the leaves should match the glass you used for the flower.  Now the flower pot can be different but most times it will also match the flower.

You can have a solid sky and then go with translucent clouds because they are two separate entities in the same window.  As for colors, well, skies are generally blue but I've used purple, amber and even orange so as I said, there's no right or wrong here.

Finally, and mark my words on this.  The minute someone sees your color combination that's what they are going to swear is what they have to make theirs look like.  It's just the way things work out.  So don't be afraid to change things, just do it!  Start with a color you know you want to use, cut it out and then decide on the next color.  That's the best way to get a great looking window.

Ok, so first up we have Cindy's Sunflower window and just look at those three different shades of translucent yellows that she used for her flower petals!   Even the brown flower center is see through and that's what makes this window look so great-- it all flows together..

Then we have Linda F's Flower In A Teacup which looks like a fairly easy piece until you examine the handle of the cup.   To cut that she made sure that she cut the inner curve first and after that was removed she went around the outside edge of the handle.   We ALWAYS cut out our inside curves before removing any other parts of the glass because those act as support. Beautiful!

Lisa made this beautiful Sunflower while at hone-- she's got a brand new workshop and she isn't going to let it sit empty!  I love that she framed this piece in wood.  It gives it a nice finished look.  Wonderful!

Mary Grace started and finished this LadyBug Lawn Ornament in class this week and then added some wire work to give the wings a little something extra.  This is a job well done!

Our last completed project was made by Betty.  She sure loves this Lily Panel and it certainly loves her because I've haven't seen her make a bad one yet.

Now Cindy is working on a nice tall Sunrise Window and she's only got a few pieces of sky left to go before she can tack this and then work on a border.  This has to be a certain size when it's completed so she's being very careful that nothing crosses any lines which would then alter the size of the window.  Precision cutting is of the utmost importance when making windows to fit into an opening.

Meanwhile Lara got the border and a zinc channel attached to her festive Flower Window.   This is going to be one in a set of three windows with this being the largest of the three.  Seeing how quickly Lara breezed through this I can't imagine that the others will take her long at all.

This week we saw Lisa begin work on a Butterfly Window with a bit of a twist.  Each of the four sections of the Butterfly's wings depicts a scene featuring a stage of its life.  Here you can see a caterpillar beginning to take shape around the outer edge of the bottom right wing.   These are tiny pieces but Lisa is moving through them with the greatest of ease.

Susan D completed Ali the Dog a few weeks ago and now she's working on a Cat Window.  Maybe she'll do a donkey next, who knows.   But I wouldn't hold my breath if I were you.  This is another pattern that Susan D drew up herself and I must say that she does have the hang of this now.


Look out because Linda L is back in action! It may have been a while since Linda  has been able to show up for class but she's retained every bit of knowledge that she's learned all the way back to day one.  Below you can see that she's cut out and ground two Baby Boy Suncatchers entirely on her own.  Talk about not missing a beat!

Belinda has her borders all cut out and she's just about ready to get that final border attached.  I never said a word but the standard question regarding this window popped up all on its own-- is that a shower head or a lamp?   There's no definite answer on that but I always look at it as a shower head.  With all of those windows who needs a light right?  But then again, at night you want a little light, right?  But it doesn't really matter at all because Belinda has turned this into perfection.


Linda F cut out, ground, and wrapped this large Owl Suncatcher while at home and after finishing up the work on her Flower in a Teacup she tacked this together and then began soldering it.  This will surely be completed upon her return.

Lastly I have a bad picture of Martha's Franklin Street Lamp which she wrapped while in class.  I forgot to take the picture and realized it while we were at the car so I pulled out my phone and snapped a number of very blurry images because my lens had fogged up!  I've sharpened this one up as much as I could and I think you can see that she got a lot done indeed.  She's just got about 7 pieces of background left to grind and then she'll move along to her border.

Okay so we were missing quite a few students this week but that was a nice way to ease back into the normal routine.  Hopefully things will be even more normal next week but we'll just have to wait and see.

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Monday, May 18, 2020


With classes about to begin in a limited fashion, I figure that it's time I take all of the pictures that our students have texted me and make a blog post out of them.  This will be a bit different from our normal postings but it will show you what  our students have accomplished on their own during their period of isolation.

Susan D's Ali The Dog Window was completed and her work is stunning,  Everything fits together wonderfully and look at some of those deep cuts (especially around the paws).  Beautiful work indeed.  Woof!

Jeanne M got her Easter Window done in time to hang up for the holiday and her choice of border color is the perfect color for a pastel themed window.  Since she posted this on Facebook I've seen the Rabbit turn up in various projects on the stained glass pattern page.  Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery!  That said, I can't wait to see what she tackles next.


Tracey's Mother Mary Window is far bigger than you might think when you first look at the picture.  Measuring 3 foot tall this window is huge!   Also since she made this as a commissioned piece I guess it's safe to say Tracey has hit the big times now.  What's not to love about this? 


Cindy S put the finishing touches on her pair of Rooster Windows, the only difference between them being the glass that she used for the background.  Which one is prettier?  Neither-- they are both exquisite!

Lisa is our newest student and sadly enough this isolation hit just as she completed her first window with us.  Never fear though because what she learned in her first 5 weeks obviously stuck with her because, as you can see, she's been making wonderful projects on her own at home.  Here we see her  Humming Bird, Pinwheel, and a wonderful Abstract Panel that's perfect for using up odd pieces of glass.  And do you know what?   These are just the first three items of many more to follow later on in this post.

Carol made this Rainbow Hear Suncatcher and look at how beautifully every line curves and flows.  Even the rounded solder bead on the outside edge is perfection due to the perfect amount of solder running all along it. 

MiMi created this incredibly cute Bird suncatcher and I may be wrong but I do believe that she might have made a gaggle of them-- or at bare minimum a flock of them.  Would you look at that perfect soldering!


Lisa also made a a Cat suncatcher, a stained glass Mobile, and a Coffee Cup panel.  I love how she's incorporated wood into her glass work.  I've always believed that it's a winning combination.

Shelley, like Lisa,  came into class just in time to have classes get cancelled due to Covid-19 but she did manage to make this hanging Butterfly on her own while in lock down.  I love that color combination.


Susan D also knocked out a few Nightlights and did some repair work on a Hummingbird Lawn Ornament as well.  Her wire work is, as you can see below,  exceptional!


Belinda's Woman In A Bathtub is yet another window whose size can be misleading, especially since it's been made a few times in it's 'standard' 18 x 16 proportions.  This one is about double that size and looking fantastic.   Distinctly blue without being overpoweringly so, this is a winner for sure. 

Cindy has practically had two irons in the fire as she's been working on this large Sunset (Sunrise?) Window.  I have to say that I love the pattern and on her own Cindy is achieving incredible work. this is going to be stunning.


It's been far too long since we mentioned Lisa so let's get back to her work.   Here is her prayer warrior army of Angels!  there looks to be about eleven of them to me, along with a triangular piece that is exceptionally triangular.   That may sound odd but geometric shapes can be tricky (if you're not Lisa!)

And we end this post by taking a look at a portion of Susan D's back yard.  Her pair of LARGE stained glass Flower Trellises may bookend her cross collection, but to me they are the centerpieces!  These are SO time consuming and incredibly difficult to make but Susan did them all on her own at her house because transporting them would have been nearly impossible.  And the work, well, I think the picture speaks for itself but I still have to say that this is truly a tour de force!

Now,  I hope I've credited all the people to their projects correctly.   Since I've checked and double checked I will probably discover that I've screwed up somewhere along the line and missed something.   That's just par for my course!

Classes are beginning again tomorrow in somewhat limited capacity but you can expect another blog post next week.  We are back!

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Thursday, April 2, 2020


Even though we haven't had classes in 3 weeks we still have students sending me pictures of things that they've been working on while at home.  So, without further ado, let's see what they've sent.

Linda F's finished her Underwater Scene and the work is wonderful.   I may have cut and attached the zinc channel for her but the rest of the work she did on this window speaks for itself.  It's tranquil but bright, as well as uplifting but deep!  In other words, it's perfection.


Cindy's pair of Roosters turned also turned out stunning.   The patterns and colors are the same between the panels but the background glass that she used differs between them.   The one on the left uses glue chip glass for the background while the one on the right is made with a clear reeded glass.  Both look great and better yet both background were cut from scrap glass that Cindy had lying around just taking up space.


Lisa made this Beveled Tulip Panel from start to finish while at home all on her own.   The pattern, the cutting, the borders, and even the hooks (which I cropped out of the picture) were all done at her house without any help at all.   In fact, the only thing that she even called about was to get two sheets of glass for her next project!   Yep, she's a success story for sure.


Barbara H sent me this picture of one of her Butterfly Flowerpot Ornaments completed and adorning one of her many flowerpots.  Not only is her Butterfly beautiful but the flowers that surround itare equally as impressive!

Shelley completed the large Mermaid Suncatcher that she's been working on and she's all set to start another window.   Shelley has an affinity for mermaids and therefor she worked very hard on making this look great as you can see for yourself.

Then we have Tracey's Mother Mary Window that is really taking shape now that she's begun grinding it.   It's looking nothing short of excellent to me and I know that Tracey is more than capable of getting this ground, wrapped and tacked so that it can then get its fancy triple border cut out. 

And Mary Grace has putting her 'spare' time to good use by cutting out these 6 Crystal Hangers.   These are the larger variety of this popular suncatcher which frames both a Chandelier Crystal as well as  the circular jewel that resides above it.

It's nice to see students working at home and making such grand accomplishments.   Myself, well, I've been lazy and aside from drawing up a few patterns I haven't cut a piece of glass in at least 2 weeks now.   And as I type this I realize that it's well past time to get back on that stained glass horse and ride!