Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Remake It!

We have quite the assortment of projects to look at this week and our theme is the name of our update: Remake It!  We're seeing a lot of work being made a second, third and forth time not because there was anything wrong with it initially.  In fact, it's very much the opposite--  People are loving what they see and wanting the same window made for their homes.  They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and all this extra work proves it!  Now let us see what everyone has been doing.

Ok, I just love this pattern!  Bonnie loved her original Bee so much that she decided to Remake It!   We all know that this is the second time that we're seeing this Bee Lawn Ornament but the difference is that this time around I have  perfect pictures of it so you can see how she's 'curved' her glass to give the bee a three dimensional effect rather than making it a simple flat project.  Note that none of the glass is curved, however-- she simply angled the wings and the bottom stripes before tacking the bee together (just as you do with a stained glass lamp).

Next we look at Terry's completed Hanson LSU Window.  Another job well done although it did have a SLIGHT issue that was easily rectified.  The 'H' is formed out of the blue glass and since cutting the long runs into smaller pieces would have make the 'H' unrecognizable Terry left them whole.  Now I have to say that  I would have done the exact same thing.  The only problem is that when you are soldering heat tends to build up quickly in pieces that are long and narrow. It's the reason why we break up borders into smaller pieces.  But sometimes design outweighs practicality and this was one of those cases.  But sure enough we discovered a heat crack in the left bar of the 'H' when the window was washed.  That said, it was an easy repair and as you can see, no one will ever know but you and I.  Terry tells me that she has to make four of these (Remake It!) so we should be seeing some more in various color schemes throughout the coming weeks.

Tim has been very busy at home and these next two windows are the fruits of his labor.  He's modified the halo of the angel in this second version of his first stained glass project.  The modification makes the cutting easier and pattern flow better.  (That makes this the second of our 'Remake It!' windows this week.) Tim had a slight issue when constructing this window but he used his head and adjusted the pattern so he could finish it at home without the need for any more glass.  I won't tell you what he changed because in the grand scheme of things it really doesn't matter and there is nothing to find fault with in this window.

This is the second of three windows that Tim was working on that he managed to completed this week .  All three are being auctioned off for a charity and Tim has proven himself to be a VERY charitable person.  The work in these windows goes above and beyond what most people would do.  And Tim's skills are progressing more and more with each project that he makes.  We'll see one more of these Tiger Eye/LSU windows (Remake It!) completed when he returns next week and then Tim will move on to some projects for himself.

Ann's multi-small-piece geometric extravaganza window is REALLY coming together now.  With both corner sections completely tacked together and more than half of the middle section ground you can really see what this window is all about.  I'm expecting this to be completed real soon now! It's going to be stunning when the dark blue background is put in place (not that it isn't already).

Brenda is now officially the queen of Stained Glass Women.  He motif for a lot (and by that I mean A LOT!) of her windows involves a woman.  It's a popular subject and her she carries out each of her visions perfectly.  We're calling her newest window 'Woman with Baby Standing in Front of a Window by the Sea That You Can't See Because of The Green Curtains That are Blocked by The Yellow Bassinet That Is Currently Empty'.  Maybe we'll just call it 'Woman With a Baby'.   Brenda's sister, Terry, has put in a helping hand on this by  painting a beautiful face onto the glass.  I can't wait to see this one completed.

Just look at that Monkey Face!   Cindy needed a quick gift for a soon to be born boy by the name of Kealan.  Rather than making an easy and quick Monkey Suncatcher, Cindy has opted to make a window that goes above and beyond by incorporating Kealan's name in a flag which adds another 37 or so TINY pieces into the project.  When you consider that the rest of the window only has 29 pieces in it you can see that Cindy has effectively doubled the work load for this project.  But like I always say, the extra work you put into a window is never transparent-- it always shows.  And this is no exception.  I was impressed at the progress that Cindy made in just one night on this window and can't wait to see how it looks when it returns.

Linda came in with her pieces all wrapped and even tacked together.  She wasn't sure of what to expect when it came to cutting the background glass but she was ready to go for it.  We cut a rectangular piece of glue chip glass, laid the centerpiece that she had tacked together on top of it, and then traced the outline.  After we finished cutting away glass that we didn't need, the background practically fit together without a need for grinding.  I don't think Linda spent more than 20 minutes at the grinder making a perfect fit.  Then she wrapped all of her pieces and got the window tacked  together before calling it a night.  Now that's production!  The only thing left to cut is her border and even though her design cuts into it she'll have an easy time completing this beautiful project.

Linda also brought this project in with her-- it's a Fan Lamp design that she worked on while she was at home. She wanted me to look it over before she committed herself to the work she'd done by tacking it all together.  I looked it over and gave her two thumbs up because there wasn't a single thing I could point a finger at even if I wanted to nit-pick at her.  Linda knows what she's doing and the work she's doing at home proves it.

Betty  worked on this Beveled Cross suncatcher while she was at home and the work is stupendous.  She had tacked it together and even soldered it but she was unhappy with the soldering job so she brought it in for me to look at.  There really wasn't any problem at all but the solder wasn't as straight as it could have been only because the clear glass she used was heavily textured.  The foil lies in a straight line on the front, smooth side but the back will always be somewhat uneven as the foil must adjust to different thicknesses in the glass.  Betty is going to put a finished bead on the edges and then bring this back in so we can see it completed next week.

Betty also worked on this Geometric Window during class and she's got most of the hard part completed.  She picked her colors and starting cutting out the center pieces of the window.  She was going to go with some purple accent pieces but worried that they would wash out being mixed in with her bright yellow, blue, and greens.  Once it's all ground and fitting together we'll get a better feel for how the colors flow but I think things are looking great.  Her color choices really make this a different window from the one that Linda is working on (which is the same design).  Remake It!


Donna came in with a pattern in mind that's VERY familiar to me.  I've been making this window for years and years because it's always been a best seller.  It's exceptionally balanced (the large flower is offset perfectly by the squat pot at the bottom), it's neither too small nor too big, it's not expensive to make nor too cheap, and it's delicate and bold at the same time.  There are a lot of tiny inner curves to the Iris that require the use of a small 1/8th grinding bit but when it all fits together it's a work of art.  Donna got a lot of this cut out but she packed it away before I could snap a picture.  I promise that we will see her glass choices when she brings it back during her next class. 

Meanwhile Jane started working on this rounded but square flower window.  I had made this for someone in New York and liked it so much that I made it again just to have in the shop and to take to shows with us.  Well, I don't have it anymore because it sold at the last show we did.  I used less clear than one might use when making this but I don't know what Jane plans on doing for all of her backgrounds and borders.   But when you have a pattern that looks this good it's hard to lose!

And this is Lynn's second Seahorse window (Remake It!).  The Seahorse in this one faces the other direction which is a less fancy way for me to say that it's a mirror image of her first window.  Now I have to say that  I was shocked when Lynn walked in with this so far along because I had no clue she was even making a second one! In fact, when I first saw it I got worried that something had happened to the first one and that she was in the process of repairing it.  I'm so impressed with the work Lynn has been doing at home and I think that this is a great example of showing just how quickly a second window can come together.  The first one always takes a little longer to make and any others after that first one are a piece of cake.

Martha has got many (soldering) irons in the fire, so to speak, and these are the current projects that she worked on in class this week.  Her Angel on the left is now completely ground and ready to be wrapped.  But rather than foiling in class she decided to work on her Dragon Fly window so could could foil all of her pieces at home during the week.  Now that's what I call class time well utilized.

And just look at how far Mary Grace has come along with her first project with us.  Her flowers, leaves, and humming bird are not only all cut out but they're ground and ready to be wrapped.  In fact, that's what Mary Grace will be doing while she's at home between classes-- foiling pieces.  When she comes back in she'll cut the 5 remaining stems, tack this together and then cut out the background glass.  I'm predicting that the circle will be tacked together when she returns and that's the lion's share of the work on this window.  She's moving along wonderfully!

Myrt is leaving her Balloon window for now and jumping over to a variation of Terry's Pelican window.  The Balloons will return but not until this window is completed.   Myrt has changed the right side of this window so much that you might not recognize the design.  And what a great job she did!  At the rate things are going I'm going to be able to hire our Tuesday night ladies to draw all of my patterns for me!  Myrt has her glass picked and will begin cutting this when she returns (unless she starts this at home which she is apt to do.)

Susan's dedication to detail is what is making this window really stand out. She's been working on the bulk of this while at home and she's got it fitting together perfectly.  I was concerned that the gloves wouldn't be obvious but Susan not only has her pieces ground to fit but she's also left enough space between the pieces to avoid having the glass shift and spin out of place when she foils each of the tiny,tiny pieces of glass.  Truly a labor of love, this window is going to come out even better than I ever imagined and it's all due to Susan's exceptional work ethic.

We're going to wrap things up by looking at Terry's latest pair of projects.  This window is based on a bevel design but Terry has cut it out of glass instead of using bevels.  She's cut the beveled edges out of red granite glass and the centers out of clear granite.  It's hard to see what's happening here but trust me when I saw that this is one elegant looking design with an exceptional use of minimal but striking color.

Terry also had a window to repair for someone but the repair work was just going to be too involved so she opted for the quick and less expensive way to fix the window--  remake it!  The original was done with lead came which is a more tradition way to make windows (we focus primarily on the Copper Foil Method) but the pieces didn't fit together well and the window was apparently never sealed correctly.  Rather than spending an elaborate amount of time taking apart and reconstructing the original window Terry copied the design and matched the glass accordingly.  And this is what she has now.  The border only needs to be ground and then wrapped before she can solder this and call it finished. 

And that as they say is that.  There's so much being done in class with multiple students working on multiple projects that it's hard for me to keep track of things.  Every now and then I'll credit something incorrectly but I try to fix the errors and right the wrongs when they do occur.  Let me tell you, it's tough getting old!

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Her make-up is a little off!   :-)

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