Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Unplug The Iron And Wash It

Paula completed her Louisiana Fleur De Lis Window and what a job she did.  The triple border on the FDL consisted of pieces only a quarter of an inch wide so her margin for error was practically non-existent.   Her attention to detail goes above and beyond.  She even has Louisiana's finger coming out the bottom right of the state which you don't see done in glass very often due to the probability of it cracking.  This is certainly a window that Paula can be proud of, right down to the soldering job that she did on it.

Terry's Chitamacha Window was also finished this week and I have to give her two thumbs up for another project well done.  Terry is another student who never shies away from a difficult window and this certainly proves my point.    And her colors are flawless.  It looked great on the table but then when we lit it up, well the picture speaks for itself.

So that brings us to Janet's Old World Santa which is officially a wrap now.  Janet modified the original pattern by removing a pair of glasses that Santa was wearing.  Looking at this finished window you'd never know that Santa had bad eyes when Janet started this.  Let's just say that Janet got Santa some LASIK eye surgery as an early Christmas gift.  Betty loves this  pattern and might be making one of these herself.

And speaking of Betty, let's take a look at her Round Magnolia Window which turned out every bit as stunning as Bonnie's did.  The colors may be different different but the end result is the same-- a beautiful window.  And I must say that Betty's soldering has come a long way. Gone are the days when I would have to redo the majority of her lead lines, now I smooth out a joint or two and it's perfection.  And for the record, Martha's been eying up this pattern.

Carol's Bee Lawn Ornament is officially completed and it was a hit in class.  I knew it would bee because the pattern itself is loved the moment people see it, and then when you see it finished with the curved wings and the curved body, well, you certainly have a winner.   The picture below doesn't reveal the amount of curve in this project so I'll post another image of the same project at the end of the blog.  It looks like I'm going to have to get that Rose pattern drawn up real soon now! 

Susan put the finishing touches on her 'M' Initial Window.  I asked her why an 'M' and she told me that 'Susan' is actually her middle name and her first name came from a song that just about everyone knows.  Her first name is actually Mony. It turns out her father was a big fan of Tommy James and The Shondells so he named her after one of his favorite songs by them (She could have been named Hanky Panky so she sorta dodged a bullet there, didn't she?)  But the kids in school all made fun of her so the teachers started calling her by her middle name, Susan, and it stuck.  Fact is, her father still sings "Here she comes now singin' Mony, Mony!" whenever he sees her.   The final decision on whether to make this window with a S or an M came down to the fact that it's being made for her bathroom where an S wouldn't go with her monogrammed bath towels or the matching set of his and her monogrammed bathrobes.  NOT!  It's all been a lie.  This was actually made for her son and Susan's work on it is wonderful.  She'll probably hit me after reading this but I'll bet Shelley will be singing Mony Mony to Susan all during class this week.

Becky S has completed the first two frames in her series of six (or is it eight?) picture frames.   She was soaking up a lot of knowledge as she made these and as she advanced through each step she learned exactly why the clear glass is cut short and why the cuts in the border glass need to be in certain positions.  She found some wonderful little brass easels to hold the frames upright on a table and the completed frames and easels are going to make wonderful gifts.

Here's a look at the last two Initial De Lis windows that Ann will be making this year (or next) because we're banning FDL's in 2015.  Both Ann's 'C' and 'W' turned out perfect and now she'll move on to something with some larger pieces in it!  I'm hoping Ann finds class to be much more relaxing while working with bigger pieces.

The last of our completed projects is Myrt's second Transom Window Insert.  This mirrors the first one she made and will bookend a longer more elaborate center section that she'll begin working on shortly.  The clear glass and bevels really look great in her window but the dying grass in the background isn't doing Myrt's work any favors.  It's just a bad time of year to be photographing clear glass (as you can well see)!

And that wraps up our completed projects this week and brings us right along to our works in progress.  We're going to start with Shelley's Mermaid Window and tell you that this is the back side which is for all intents and purposes is completed.  Shelley just has to wash this up and then color it when she comes back in and then she's ready to move on to a Wine Window.  I have a feeling that might grab the attention of our Tuesday night class! 

Bonnie's 3 Tiered Sunflower is almost together now.  She has a lot of the background cut out and will most certainly be adding a border when she comes back in.  I was somewhat concerned about the height of this window thinking that it might be too tall for the regular brass channel that we tend to use but now that a lot of it is tacked together I don't believe there is anything to worry about at all.  In fact, it's not even going to need the re-stripping that I suspected we might use to make it sturdier.

Brenda  began working on a modified Wood Duck while she was at home and she has it nearly complete already.  She only had the sky and leaves left to cut when she came into class and now there are just a few pieces of leaves left to go.  Her sky wasn't cut exactly cut from one piece of fitted glass the way that Jeannette's boat windows were but we used a technique that still allows for a continuous flowing sky.  And you'll see how that looks when it's all ground and fits together.

This week Betty began seriously working on her newest Nativity Scene Window and it's seriously coming along!  She DID cut her sky out of one piece of glass but when I cut one of her pieces I accidentally cut through a good piece (apparently cutting point to point isn't always a good idea.)  I think we'll be able to work around the  problem but it means that she'll have to leave a hole in the window as she's working on it.  Then once it's tacked together we'll find the best fit in regards to the grain of the glass for the missing piece and no one will ever know that I screwed up.


Janet not only completed her Old World Santa but she also started this Dragonfly and Peaches Window as well.  She's  even started cutting glass already starting with her peaches.   This window has a lot of pieces but it's made up of smooth curves that should be relatively easy to cut.  And the design itself is going to look very nice indeed which we'll see when some more color is added to this.

Then Jeannette came in and got the water and the boat all wrapped and tacked together and then she cut out her clouds.  Once they were ground she cut one piece of blue glass that fit the skyline perfectly and then traced everything into place on it so that after the sky was cut into it's individual pieces it would reassemble itself perfectly.  In the end she added a small cloud at the top center for balance.  She's taken this home to wrap and solder but I'll be surprised if she gets any soldering done since I found her soldering iron in the shop that night after she'd left.  But tacking this together won't take any time at all and I doubt that soldering will either.

Linda F is another student who has really gotten a lot of work done this week.  Her 'T' Window has its background tacked into place as well as it's amber border.  All it needs now is a little solder and she can called this finished.  And if that weren't enough she also has a Cardinal that she began working on which is ready to be wrapped and soldered.  Linda is fast becoming a speed queen!

Terry's latest window is a Geometric Design but as someone in class pointed out, it looks like something you'd see when looking into a kaleidoscope.  And that's the perfect description for this window so I'm calling it the Kaleidoscope Window from here on out (which, knowing Terry, won't be for long.)  I think this is going to be a great window and can't wait to see what color choices Terry makes as she moves along on it.

Lynn ground her 'jewels' into place on her 'G' Initial Window and will start wrapping and tacking what she has cut out while she's at home.  The hardest sections are done and all that's really left to cut are a few background pieces and the border.  I would still like to know what I did to the tiny piece of amber glass that I took to the grinder and then somehow lost.  I ended up re-cutting it but even that trick didn't make the missing piece resurface like it usually does.

Wow, isn't Martha's Irises and Dragonfly Window looking great?  Here's a nice detailed view of some of her cutting which shows off the purple glass she's using.  If you pay close attention you can even see the yellow headed pins that Martha used to hold some of the other pieces in place.  Amazing.

Mary Grace had her yellow glass that she needs for her Sunflower Window arrive in time for her class but she decided to keep working on her deer.  I always say that once you're on a roll you shouldn't do anything to stop that wheel from rolling.  And she's moving along quickly because all she needs now are a few pieces of black glass for the deer and then the blue sky which she'll cut out when she returns again next week.  We'll probably use the piecing method to give the sky a continuous feel but we'll decide on that when she comes in.

Rowena is all set to start soldering her LSU/Tiger Eye Window.  I think this already looks great even without solder on it!  Rowena really came through like a champion while making this.  Everything lined up perfectly and that face is unmistakable.  This one is fun to solder so I suspect that the rest of this project will be a breeze for Rowena.

And in the end we come to Linda L who decided to make some Kaleidoscopes.  She managed to get all the glass cut out for three of them, wheels and all.  The pattern wheels are the hardest part of making these kaleidoscopes but it isn't nearly as bad as I sometimes make it out to be.  I tend to stress the importance of making them perfectly round and balanced and then end up scaring people away from making them.  I just don't want students thinking that it's a simple 15 piece project that you can just throw together without regard.  Wheels thrown together all Willy-Nilly will make for a cattywompus Kaleidoscope.  Precision counts in large amounts on this project but Linda is coming through in spades. 

And that does it for this week.  We'll have plenty more to see when we return in a week's time so be sure to come back!

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

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