Monday, June 7, 2021

911, What is Your Emergency?

 Running Pliers are easy to use if you know the simple rules to using them. 

1) Set your pliers.  We're going to go a bit out of sequence and cover that long winded lesson next week.

2) Position your pliers on the glass so that the score you made with your cutter lines up perfectly with the mark in the center of the pliers.  The score must flow smoothly into that mark as if both the mark and the score were one continuous line.   Don't hold your pliers at an angle to your score line.

3) Don't push the glass all the way into the jaws of the pliers as you see on the left side of the image below.  Your pliers should be near the edge of the glass as you can see on the right side of the image.

 

Lastly, don't hold your pliers near the center of the grip as shown in the top most image.  Instead, hold them towards the back end of the pliers.  You'll find that the handle curves towards the back so that holding them this way is comfortable.  Holding them as shown in the very bottom image allow you to apply as little pressure as possible when breaking you glass.   Score lines will break far easier and accurately when you apply the least amount of pressure to them.  In other words, you'll break less glass this way!

 

Okay then, Martha's first of three Wedding Boxes has turned out spectacular indeed.  These boxes are each  made to specifically match the invitation that is encased into the lid of the box so that no two are ever the same.   Look at the flower in the upper left of the invitation and there it is recreated in a glass panel to the right of the invitation.  These make a perfect wedding gift because of how personalized they are.

 
 
Linda F's Louisville Cardinals Window proves that if you follow the pattern exactly you'll always come out a winner.   The graceful curves of the red granite glass pieces that make up the letter 'L' is akin to perfect penmanship.  What Cardinals fan wouldn't want this in their window?

 
 

When Annette asked if I could draw this Crow and Moon pattern for her I said, 'sure' and then she countered with the fact that she really didn't want to make it because the theme was too 'dark' for her tastes.  Myself, I liked the pattern but saw where she was coming from.  A day or two later she called and said not to bother drawing it but I did so anyway because I really felt that it had a Stephen King's The Stand vibe about it (which I love). A few weeks later Annette saw the pattern and after seeing it drawn up and colored in she decided to go ahead and make it.   Here we see her with 3 hours of work involved.  Yep, it's all cut out already and it looks great!


 
With the grinding of her Cardinal Window almost complete (I think there are less than 5 pieces to go) I'd say that Tracey is figuratively flying through this window faster than a humming bird flaps its wings.   As I suspected, it looks fantastic.   There's something about the size of this window that makes it look better than ever-- it's not too big and it's not too small.  I may make one of these for my next show.  Good pick, Tracey!

  
 

Susan R has got a Garden Gnome in the form of a Bee well underway here.   Everything has been cut out and ground which means that she'll be wrapping this and then soldering it upon her return.  This little bearded guy is a cute one!
 
  
 
 
Kerry only has four pieces left to grind and then his Butterfly and Sun scene will be ready to be wrapped.  There will be a beveled border surrounding this and there's a very good chance that we'll see that attached when Kerry returns next week because this is close to being finished already.

 

Rowena started this Buck Window while she was at home and this week she wrapped it, tacked it, and got a border cut out for it. We tried numerous colors for the border and in the end EVERYONE agreed that this forest green and tan mix was the perfect color for the job. With just some soldering left to go on the rear side of this I'd say that it is just about ready to hang in a window.
 
  
 
 
Lisa's making four  Harry Potter Sorting Hat Nightlights and she has three of them ready to be foiled with just one more left to grind.   

"Now slip me snug around your ears-- I've never been wrong.  
 I'll have a look inside your mind and tell you where you belong." 
 
  
 
 
Linda L's Plate Flower Window is really coming together quickly.  She only has a few pieces of background left to grind and then she'll wrap and tack this together.  We're going to leave holes where the plates should go when she solders this so the window will lay flat on the table on both its front side and it's back.  Once everything is soldered we'll add the plates and turn this into a 3D project once and for all.
 
  
 
 
In the end Sheri's tumble last only broke a few pieces and a little bit of her pride.   Since some of the glass can't be obtained any more she had to replace all of the glass you see marked with green dots.  All in all I like the new glass even better than what she originally picked.   Sometimes bad things work out for the best.  Sheri, Like Linda L above,  will also leave holes in her Chakra Yoga Window while she is soldering it because she has jewels that will poke out close to 2 inches running down the center of this window.  It's easy to solder the front side with the jewels in place but they would hold the window in the air while trying to solder the back side so we'll just ignore placing those jewels until the very end.
 
  
 

Kate's Dragonfly Window is also moving along nicely.  She found just enough iridized glass for the wings and then spent time finding 3 blues that match nicely.  On paper they appear darker than they really are but those water ripples are going to look spectacular.  For a new student she sure cuts glass wonderfully and as of this week she's leaning more towards the orange dragonfly body.
 
  
 

With her Cardinals ready to be wrapped and her double Sunflower almost completely ground I think Mary Grace will be taking home some more Hoop projects next week.  Would it sound too much like a dad joke if I said that she's on a roll with these Hoop designs?? 
 
  
 
 
Bee has just three more pieces to grind and then she'll move on over to foiling and then tacking together her Dove.  Once it's tacked she'll trace it on top of her background glass and then cut the radiating rays (lines).  That part will go very, VERY quickly!
 
  
 

Speaking of rays, Susan D's Remmus Window just has a few lines left to be soldered on its back side (which you see below) and then it will be ready for framing.   We've already checked the size and it fits into its wrought iron frame as perfectly as it can so we'll surely see this completed next week.
 
  
 
 
MiMi ran out of a few different textures of glass hexagons so rather than putting her latest insert together and omitting textures that are clearly visible in the other windows MiMi cut out scores of more hexagons.  She's got another tray full and that means that her new insert will be completely balanced in regards to the other inserts that she's already made and the ones that she WILL be making.  Consistency is a very important thing.

 
 
Shawn almost has her Scuba Diver Window completely wrapped now which means that she'll be tacking this together when she returns.  Once tacked we will redesign the head of the diver and then deal with the final border.  Easy peasy.

 
 
Shelley is dealing with the beak of her Flamingo the same way that Shawn will be dealing with her diver head.  Shelley's pattern was changed as she was making  this so the beak has been left empty (for now).  Once tacked together we will trace out the remaining pieces by placing the glass that she wants to use under the opening and then tracing around it.  Things will fit perfectly and there will be no guess work as to how things will look since we can see exactly how the glass will show up since it will be under the window before we cut it.

 
 
Cindy's Franklin Street Light Window is all cut out and that sky looks amazing!  It's all one continuous cut from a single piece of glass so the patterns in the sky match perfectly.  At first Cindy was unsure about the dark blue border she picked but I think it looks wonderful and wouldn't change it for the world.
 
  
 
 
Linda F resumed work on her Flower Hoop after she completed her Louisville Cardinals Window and as you can see, all but the leaves have been foiled.  That means that this will most likely be permanently affixed to its hoop the next time you see it!
 
  

 
Mary has the front of her Red Fish Window soldered and will flip this over to do the second side whens she comes back in.   I think there's going to be a very good chance that she takes it home with her for good when she returns.  Look to see this among out completed projects in the next edition of our Blog.

  
 
And there you have it.   We may have only had two completed projects this week but you have to admit that they are both quality pieces and that's what stained glass should always be about- quality.
 
Paul

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

 
 
 
 

 

Monday, May 31, 2021

Having Too Much Exposed

We're jumping straight in here because I never worked out a tip for this week.  Susan R  has completed her Mini-Trellis which features 3D flowers, a 3D Butterfly and a Bee mounted on top of a background of assorted leaves.   It looks spectacular and I've also included a side view so you can see just what I mean about the flowers being three dimensional.

 

 
 
 
Angie's Praying Hands Window was finished and the bevels that make up those hands really sparkle and shine.   Set into a powder Blue Sky these Prayer Hands show what true devotion is all about.
 
 
 
Mary Grace's latest Hoop project is a Flower that extends beyond the hoop for an even more striking  effect.  More than a few people have been confused about how you would attach something that is larger than the hoop but as you can see it's a design idea that works wonderfully.

 
 
Lara  made this fancy suncatcher featuring an iridescent triangular centerpiece.   The beauty in this lies within its simplicity and Lara's use of clear textured glasses.

 
 
Annette loved the flower suncatcher that Melissa made last week so she  took the pattern home with her in hopes of making a few of them on her own.   She came in with all her pieces ground and wrapped, and by the time she left class she had three of thee popular Flowers finished in three different colors.  Beautiful.
 
 
 
Cindy created another  red, white, and blue Bicycle Wheel Spinner and only has one more to go before she ends her Spinner series.  Practice makes perfect and as you can see Cindy has had a lot of practice making these.



Kerry began working on a Butterfly Window which will feature a beveled border.   To achieve that we had to alter the pattern just a bit by cutting down the height and extending the width of the pattern to accommodate the bevels that he plans to use.   Never forget that a beveled border can't just be added to any window--  you have to plan out the size in advance just like Kerry has done here.

  

 
Lara also managed to worked on her Flower Pot Window this week.  She had ground everything while at home and spent most of her night wrapping her pieces and then tacking them all together.  With just a border or two to go this will easily be completed before you know it.
 
  
 
 
Shawn got an incredible amount of work done on her Scuba Diver Octagon Window as it is now completely ground.  She's altering the head apparatus of the diver from what was drawn on the pattern and the diver still needs some fins on his feet but we're going to tend to those pieces AFTER this has been tacked together so we can work with a window whose pieces won't be shifting around.
 
  
 
 
Judy  had cut out most of her large Angel Suncatcher last week so when she came back in she only had a few pieces of the wings left to cut out.   Once that was done she began grinding her Angel and by the end of class she had it all fitting together perfectly.  That's impressive work done impressively quickly.  It won't be long before Judy will have to decide what she's making next.

 
 
Mary Grace has another Hoop Project well underway.  All that's left to be done is to grind the eyes and beaks of her two Cardinals after which she'll be able to  wrap and tack them together.  This is another pattern that extends beyond the perimeter of the hoop as the tail feathers of these birds will hang below the hoop as pictured below.
 
  
 
 
Our newest student, Kate, has decided to make a Dragonfly Panel.   She traced out her pattern, cut out the paper pattern pieces and then began cutting out the actual glass pieces.  She's undecided as to whether the body of the Dragonfly will be red or orange so she cut the body out in each color and will decide which she likes better once the blue water has been cut out.  Green is also another possible color selection for the body...

 
  
 
 
Roxane got the second scene in her three section Nativity Window all tacked together which means that the third section will be started when she next returns to class.  This is going to be a large window once it all comes together.
  
 
 
Mary's Redfish got it's lure cut out and then she was able to cut, grind, and almost completely wrap her border pieces as well.  She's used a nice heavily textured clear that's really going to sparkle when it gets some light behind it.  Actually, it already sparkles just resting there on the pattern!
 
  
 
 
Linda F is making an oversized Flower Hoop of her own and now that she's seen Mary Grace's rendition of it perhaps it will all make more sense to her as to how it will look with the leaves 'poking' out of the hoop.
 
 
Susan D's Summer window has moved along QUICKLY!  She's only got a few more pieces left to wrap and then she can begin soldering it.  I love how she  took her time and carefully cut the rays of the sun into the blue sky without running lines out from each point.  That's some serious determination there. 
 
  
 
 
Having cut out all of her clear textured background glass Tracey's Hummingbird Window is now ready to be ground.   In fact, if you look closely you can see that she's already got a start on that process in the bottom right hand corner.   You can never say that Tracey doesn't work quickly and efficiently. 

  
 
 
Linda F did manage to complete her Louisville Cardinals window but it still needs to be colored.  Since she's doing this in black patina she has to let the patina set for about 45 minutes after she applies it and she just didn't have enough time left to let it sit that long this week.  Rest assured that this will be colored and hanging up when we see it again.

 
 
MiMi has the first column ground for her newest Hexagon Insert.  The first column is the toughest because it involves slicing numerous hexagons so that they end at the proper width of the panel.   Once that row is cut and ground the rest of the window is just the same piece over and over and over and over and over.  And that is where MiMi is now.   

 

This was what Sheri's Chakra Yoga Window looked like when she took it home to wrap.  Sadly though, tragedy has struck and Sheri actually fell while transporting it.  Luckily Sheri is fine save for a bruised tailbone however  I don't know exactly how much  broke.  All she said was that  she needs more of the blue glass and more of the textured glass that semicircles the man.   Please stay tuned as more details will be provided as information comes in.

 
 
Martha's Wedding Box is taking shape quickly now that she has the lid section all tacked together and ready for solder.   With a little bit of luck this will be completed when she comes back in-- if not it will be very, VERY close to completion.  [Now that I know that we will be having a small class Tuesday I believe that I can safely say that this WILL be completed.]

  
 
 
Cindy's already got her newest Bicycle Spinner cut out so all she needs to do is to wrap those pieces in copper foil which she likes to do while at home.   With extra class time on her hands she's started her next project-- a Franklin Streetlight Window. Judging from her phone call to me she may very well have this mostly cut out because she told me that she's wrapping pieces in copper foil already.
 

 
And to wrap this post all up we'll take a  look at Cheryl's Mr. Bingle Window which has been completely soldered now.   She has to fix a few run-throughs on the front side but other than that this window is finished.   This will be washed and looking festive when Cheryl comes back into class two weeks from now.
 
  
 
So there it is, everything that happened in our last set of classes.

Paul 

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Monday, May 24, 2021

Paul's Two Cents

When making suncatchers a lot of students have a tough time blending their lead lines into the lead bead that surrounds the outer edge of the suncatcher.  In most cases people drag lead off the edge of the glass creating a 'waterfall'  and other times they stop short and don't connect the lead line to the edge bead.  The picture below is what we're actually looking to achieve.  You want a nice smooth joining of the lead line to the edge perimeter of the piece.

 
This is actually not hard to acheive.  All you need to do is to rest your iron on the lead line about a quarter of an inch from the edge of the glass and wait.  Watch and you'll see melting lead radiate outwards from the tip of the iron to the edge of the glass and when it connects GENTLY lift the tip off of the glass leaving behind a perfectly smooth joining of the top and the edge lead beads.  The key word here is GENTLY and I can't stress that enough.  Sudden moves will always leave irregularities in your lead.  If you lift the tip of your iron from the lead slowly you'll get a perfect line every time.
 

Linda's Watering Can Window is finished and the careful cutting of her sky really makes this window flow beautifully.  Alas, the only picture I got that didn't turn out blurry was the one that had the flash on so the glare is taking away from the continuous flow of her sky in this particular picture but trust me, it's as natural and realistic as a stained glass sky can get. 

  
 
 
Although it may not be your cup of tea (so to speak) Annette's Falcons Window is certainly going to turn heads.   She did a great job on this window every step of the way which leaves her with a project that can't help but to become a show stopper.
 
  
 
 
Kerry's Bobwhite Window was completed and I have to give credit where credit is due-  Kerry has really stepped up his game when it comes to soldering.  That said, this is a fantastic job all around no matter how you look at it.
 
 
 
This is the first of two completed projects that Lisa made.   It started out as a single Cardinal in a hoop but then turned into a flower and a cardinal in a hoop.  Then, at the last minute, Lisa decided to add a prism hanging from the bottom of her Hoop design and it would appear that the third change is the charm!
 
 
  
 
After that Lisa went off and completed her latest Lantern Insert Panels featuring an almost 'woven' design.   Here it is all lit up and looking mighty fine.
 
 
 
 
Melissa called me just before class started and said that although she was coming to class she had forgotten to put her pattern in her car for the Butterfly that she was working on last week.  Rather than wasting a lot of class time by going home to retrieve her pattern pieces she decided to make something quickly in one class as a present.  She loved this flower design and by the end of the night she had crafted it perfectly. 

 
 
Sheri was certainly busy while in class because she completed her Cross/Heart/Rose Panel.  Measuring slightly larger than a piece of paper, this design always sells well at shows.   Here's hoping Sheri has luck with hers!
 
  
 

Cindy's latest Bicycle Wheel walked out the door as two more blank wheels walked in.   Like I said last week, she's on a roll with these things!

 
 
Betty walked out the door with three more Crosses under her belt (so to speak) and they all look fantastic.  As Betty often says,  "You can never have too many suncatchers in the house because you never know when you'll need a gift!"
 

 
 
And for our last completed project we look at a butterfly which means that we have a new student!   Kate sure has a sense of style because I honestly don't believe anyone has ever made an all clear butterfly before.   She even colored the lead with black patina to really give the lead some contrast. This was made with the greatest of ease and I can't wait to see what she decides to make as her first window with us.



 
Linda L is making a Flower Window utilizing Depression Plates as the flowers themselves.  We saw the pattern in our last post but this week you can easily see what this is going to look like since everything but the background has been cut out and laid in place. 

Speaking of having everything but the background cut out-- that's exactly where Tracey stands with her latest Hummingbird Window.  She has her pattern all traced out onto a beautiful piece of clear onami glass which is actually resting on top of the flowers and bird in the photo below.  Look closely and you'll see the blue outlines.   Next week they'll all be cut out and Tracey will begin grinding.

 

I always frown when I take white on white pictures but Bee's Dove is currently white glass on white paper so it is what it is.  That's not to say that this won't be stunning when it's completed-- of that I have no doubt.  It's just going to be hard to see just what Bee accomplishes each week until this is finished and hanging up. 

 
 
Judy wanted to do something a little smaller than a window so she's making this large Angel suncatcher. She's only been working on it for one class and she's already got most of it cut out which means that she'll surely begin grinding this Angel when she returns.

  

 
Mary Grace has begun working on another Hoop Design, this one being a pair of Cardinals.   I may be able to talk her into adding a few simple leaves to 'round this out' when it's finished.  We'll see what happens when she comes back in.  It will be easy and it will add so much to the finished project.
 
  
 
 
Linda F not only completed her Watering Can Window-- she also got a lot of work done on her Louisville Cardinals Panel as well.  This is all cut out and she's now well into the grinding portion of this piece.

 
 
Shelley's got her Flamingo Window all ground save for the beak of the bird so she's taken this home in hopes of having it all wrapped and ready for beak work when she comes back in.   The beak will be easy enough so we should get to see a border get cut for this as well.  This will be completed before you know it.
 
  
 

Susan R finished the soldering on three of her six 3D flowers which means that this Flower Sculpture is almost finished now.  Once the remaining flowers have been assembled she'll color them and then tack them onto the leaf trellis section after which she'll be able to call this a completed project.
 
  
 
 
With the side panel all  cut out for her Wedding Invitation Box Martha is ready to to grind her background glass, tack this together and then get a border cut out for it.   I have to say that the hard part of this project is well behind her now.

 
 
Mary finished wrapping almost all of the pieces for her Red Fish Window and now that we can clearly see what things look like I think that we will be cutting the lure into both the window AND the border.  We'll show you what that looks like when we post our next blog update.

 
 
Here's the back side of Cheryl's Mr. Bingle Window about half way soldered.  When we flipped it over after she completed soldering the front of her window I could tell that all of the Strong Line we added throughout the window had helped to sturdy things up a bit.   That's not to say that she won't have to be careful with this, but it will in fact be stronger than most windows this size (almost 4 foot wide).

  
 
 
It looks like Cindy has at least two more full sized Bicycle Wheels to stud with glass.   She's been accomplishing one or more a week so these shouldn't take her long at all.
 
  
 
 
And last but not least we take a look at what Lara accomplished while at home throughout the week.  Not bad at all.  This is definitely coming together and looking great!

  
 
And there you have it- all the news that's fit to post.

Paul