Sunday, April 16, 2017

Chunky Dunkin'

We had another Stained Glass Weekend Workshop this past week which brings us two new window patterns and a old favorite done in new ways.  Here are the completed windows:

Now let's get into some detail about how they were made. Roxane has taken our Weekend Workshop four times previously and she's since become a weekly student as well.  Because of all this experience she was able to fly through the creation of her latest Stylized Fleur De Lis.  Here she is tracing out her paper patterns onto a sheet of glass that she'll be using.

After all of her glass was cut and ground to fit together, Roxane began the arduous task of wrapping her pieces in copper foil.  Once the pieces are wrapped the foil must be 'pressed down' so the foil is absolutely flush with the glass.  Below we see Roxane accomplishing this goal with the use of a plastic pen (my favorite tool for the job).

Roxane was the first to finish her window and she did so with a great amount of skill.  The cutting was perfect, the grinding flawless, and her colors are wonderful-- give the woman a hot dog!

Next up we take a look at Julie's Stylized Fleur De Lis.  Julie's class was a birthday gift from her mother (Angie) and since this is Julie's first class with us we'll go into more detail about how her window was made.  Julie took her time cutting the glass so when she put everything on top of her pattern it all fit really well which translated to far less time at the grinder.  I truly believe that every extra 5 seconds spent accurately cutting saves you about 45 seconds at the grinder.

Once everything fit together Julie surrounded each of her glass pieces with copper foil.  Here we can see the window with about half of the pieces foiled.  It's really taking shape now!

Once the center was tacked together Julie decided to go with a green border that matches the accent pieces in the Fleur De Lis.  The border was strip cut and then broken into individual pieces, ground, wrapped, and tacked into place.  Here's Julie's window all ready to be soldered. 

In our second to last picture we see Julie's window all soldered, washed, and at the start of it's coloring process.  The lead goes on the window as a silver color and then a chemical (Copper Sulphate) is applied to the lead to turn it a copper color.  If you enlarge the picture you can see the patina has turned the horizontal bars of the FDL copper already.   This picture also shows how much the colors of the glass change depending on what the window is resting on.

It's hard to believe that the picture below is the same window in the picture above.   Stained glass shines the most when it has light behind it (no pun intended).  Julie did a beautiful job working on this every step of the way and I hope she had as much fun making this as we did having her in class with us.

Next up we have Jacob and Stephanie who are regulars in our Weekend Workshops.  Since Stephanie is currently expecting they wanted to make a window that reflected this joyful time in their lives.  This Stork Window is wonderfully playful and will fit beautifully into their babies room.    Here it is being cut out with some of the paper pattern pieces still in place waiting to be traced out.

Now that all of the pieces have been cut and ground, Stephanie and Jacob began wrapping them.  With the two of them working together they were able to fly through this window and as you can see they are able to wrap two, three or four pieces at a time since they are working as a team.

When it came time to solder Stephanie had to back away from the window due to lead being involved.  We take all the appropriate safety measures when soldering and I've been using solder on an almost daily basis since the early 80's so we ARE very safety conscious here in the shop.  That said, we never want to take any risks, therefore pregnant women cannot be involved in the soldering process at all.   As you can see, Jacob did an incredible job on his own because this Stork Window turned out beautiful.

Lastly we take a look at Angie's newest window with us.   This is an original pattern and the eagle was picked because Angie spots them on her property from time to time.  What we have is a brown bird in a brown tree so there's a possibility of this window reaching brown overload but you'll see that Angie avoids this problem wonderfully.

Here's Angie in the midst of soldering her window.  As you can see she has decided to use a double border and it works perfectly with this pattern and with these colors.  Making the Eagle cut into the inner border and out of its frame gives a nice sense of depth.

In the end there really was no other choice when picking the color for the final border of this Eagle Window.  Is it too much brown?  Nope, not at all.  Angie's color sense surely shines through and I won't be surprised at all if this is made again during our weekly classes.

So how did it all go down?  Well, I had a grand old time.  Saturday's class ran from 9 until 4:30 and on Sunday we were out the door by 4:30 as well.  Yes, they were long days but they were filled with plenty of laughter which made it all go by quickly.   We always enjoy seeing our 'Weekend Workshop Crew' and Russ and I can't wait to see them again!


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