Monday, August 5, 2013

Walking On Broken Glass

A number of people have mentioned to me that once you understand the concepts of something it's good to re-start again from the beginning to pick up things that might have been overlooked.  This is something that I understand completely so over the next few weeks we're going to be starting off each of our Blog entries with the basics of making a suncatcher.  We'll cover it step by step starting next week and hopefully it will inform those who read our blog but have never made a stained glass project as well as enlighten anyone who IS a student and knows what they are doing.  The devil is in the details and when it comes to making stained glass there are many details to remember.

Okay, so we're going to start off with Terry's completed lamp.  She took her time and in the end it all paid off richly for her because all the little details in her lamp work perfectly.  Look at how straight and even her three bottom borders are (which is arguably the toughest part of making this lamp.)  Terry's soldering was superb and required VERY little touching up on my part.  Again, my hat goes off to Terry for her excellent work.  She didn't have to regrind a single piece of this when putting it together and that says a lot right there.

We also have Betty's completed Hummingbird/Iris Window to look at this week and it's easily her best work yet.  And when I say 'yet' I have to say that the newest window that she's working on  may even surpass this one.  I love that the flow of this window travels from the lower right to the upper left.  And let's face it, Betty's colors are nothing short of perfection.

All of our students have been showing off their ever increasing talents and Cindy's work is no exception.  Cindy's abilities have grown in leaps and bounds over the past few months and this Deer Window that she completed this week shows that Cindy is paying attention to all the details.  You can't find a single flaw in this window

Becky is one of our newest students but her work makes it appear as though she's been taking classes for months already.  With only one border left to go it I know she'll be soldering this when she returns. And with all our other students commenting on how nicely this is turning out I'm sure that the finished version will be turning heads and gathering compliments from all of our other classes.

Bonnie's lamp, although not completed, is just about there.  I expected that she'd have 2 more weeks to go on this but with the outside now completely soldered (and soldered incredibly well I might add) there's only the inside of the lamp to lead before she can call it completed.  Bonnie changed her mind about the cap she planned on using on this and I have to say that she made a wonderful choice in the end.  The traditional cap she ended up picking is a perfect stylistic fit on her traditional lamp.  This will certainly be completed in our next update.

Betty also amazed me with her work on her latest window.  Look at those straight lines!  Look at that perfect fit!  She's only got 16 pieces of border left to go before she can wrap and solder this.  I have no idea what color she plans on going with but no matter what she picks she can't lose since the center is clear and completely color neutral.  Be it cherry red or another textured clear glass this will be stunning.

Brenda's latest Cross window is far fancier than any other Cross window she's made.  This one features a scrolling border that steps the entire window up 2 or three notches on the 'elegance factor'.  I've always said that a window's borders account for at least 75% of it's appeal and you can see from just the pattern why I always say this.   Brenda loves the design so much that she's also incorporating it into the Fleur De Lis Window that she'll be making next.

Let's look at Linda's project next.  Linda is another student whose work impressed me this week.  She traced out her pattern and literally went to town cutting glass while I was busy elsewhere.  When I looked up to see what she'd done she was rejoicing in the fact that she'd cut all of her inner curves on her own.  And just look at how this is fitting together without even having been ground yet.  Excellent!

Shelley came in and had a decision to make:  What color was she going to border her Dog Window with?  After looking through various colors we all decided that blue was the answer.  And you have to admit that it really pulls all her colors together.  Shelley has the front side of this window completely soldered which means that with only the back side left to go this will be completed when she returns

Then we have Mary Grace who finished cutting the final border of her Kaleidoscopic Window and then began grinding all of her pieces for a perfect fit.  Her work is better and better with each passing week and as you can see this fits together wonderfully.  With only a few pieces of red left to go and then the final borders I think it's safe to assume that she'll begin wrapping this when she comes back to class.

Meanwhile, Mary has decided to work on a Beveled Cross window similar to Betty's.  And Linda plans on making one herself so I'd say that it's safe to say that this pattern is a hit!  Mary also decided that she wanted to make a Deer Window so we worked out the size of that pattern while she was in class.  It will be interesting to see what she decides to work on first and it will be as much a surprise for me as it is for you (the reader). 


Myrt resumed work on her Cross Suncatcher which has now turned into a Cross Window!  She's added four background pieces made from clear Glue Chip glass and then surrounded them with the same green glass that was used in the center sections of the cross.   The glass she used came from an old window which still has some paint lines on it that will need to be removed with some steel wool but you can easily see what the finished project will look like already. 

Susan resumed grinding her 3rd panel which is only 5 pieces away from being ready for foiling.  She has the surrounding border for the last panel already fitted so she's well on her way to getting this lamp out the door.  The soldering on a panel lamp goes much quicker than that of a rounded lamp because each section is soldered as a completed window before it's tacked together to form the lamp.  That means that there will only be 4 lines that need to be soldered while the lamp is resting in her lap and I'm sure that knowledge is making her smile as she reads this.  :-)

Hip Hip Hooray, Martha's back!  She was surely missed over the past few weeks and her arrival in class was met with cheers of joy.  She managed to get four of her crosses completely wrapped leaving only these two left to go.  She's wrapped the bevels with silver back foil which tells me that she plans on leaving her solder silver on these windows when they're completed.  Alas, she had the completed crosses in her car when I came around with the camera so all i got were these last two unfinished pieces but they certainly show you what the others look like.


Tami came in and resumed grinding on her Double Flower Window.  Not only did she complete the grinding process but she managed to wrap all of her pieces as well.  Tami is another student who's making her first project look downright easy and I'm glad we went with the more complex design.  Her fit is flawless and this window is going to light up wonderfully when it has some sun behind it.  With only a border left to go I'll say that she easily starts soldering this next week.

We already looked at Cindy's Deer Window but she didn't stop when she got that completed.  She also managed to cut and grind this Indian Squaw's face complete with feathers!  She's going to wrap this and finish it when she comes back in but what you don't see yet is the extra wire work that goes into this pattern.  Trust me when I say that you'll be impressed when you see this again.

And that about wraps up this weeks happenings here at our Bayou Salé Glass Classes.  We had a song play during class that seemed appropriate to quote for the blog so I'll leave with with these 'immortal' words as sung by Annie Lennox:

I'm living in an empty room
With all the windows smashed
And I've got so little left to lose
That it feels just like I'm walking on broken glass


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