Monday, October 16, 2017

The Completion Backwards Principle

I stumbled upon a picture of a stained glass rose while surfing the internet and my first thought was, "Well, that's all wrong."   Stained glass is supposed to flow and be beautiful.  What I saw was all harsh, straight lines.   Below and to the left is the original picture.  To the right I've tweaked it just a bit to remove some unnecessary lead lines and to add curves to the ones that are needed.    There are still a number of improvements that I would make but I only fixed the most glaring of problems with this window.  Workmanship aside, don't you agree that the one on the right looks much softer and more appealing than the one on the left?   Always remember that straight lines should almost always be avoided when making stained glass (unless you are working on a piece dealing exclusively in straight lines.)

Okay then, Jan was able to finish her Sunflower Window and I really do think that it's spectacular!   I love this so much that I can easily see myself making one in the (near) future.  I think it's the overlapping yellows that really make this stand out.  You can almost actually feel the petals overlap.

Then there's Mary Grace's Hibiscus window which is another definite winner!  I knew it was a beautiful design but seeing it with some light behind it really makes this window sparkle.   At one point Mary Grace wanted to reverse some of the purple border so that the texture would be on the front, but if she wanted to do that she would have needed to do it to  ALL of the purple pieces, not just some of them.  In the end, you can see the texture perfectly through the glass and the bumpy solder lines caused by the rough texture is hidden on the back side of the window.   That's why I always recommend keeping the smooth side forward.

Roxane's Cross Window was certainly an exercise in making straight cuts that line up perfectly.   This window was almost exclusively cut with a pistol grip cutter and a straight edge, and because of that you can see that all of the lines in this window are uniform and unwavering.  Not only that but the different layers all line up perfectly without the straight lines changing angles.   It's VERY easy to screw up a window like this but Roxane made it look easy (even though it wasn't).  Great work!

Melissa completed her very large Birds and Bird Nest Window and what an exquisite job she did on it.  I don't like to dwell too long on picking out glass for a project but in this case the background glass is what really makes this window.   Fractures and Streamers always works out great as a background because it gives the illusion of trees and foliage behind the glass.   It's a built in special effect that works every single time.  Melissa should be very proud of the work she did on this window.

Angie finished her version of the Woman In A Hat Window and her interpretation is every bit as stunning as Tasha's was.  This is a gift to someone who sells Mary Kay Cosmetics and the colors compliment that perfectly.


Rowena finished another Sunflower Suncatcher and the picture easily says a thousand words about it.   This is another job well done as Rowena did it ALL by herself.

And then Rowena also made this Modern Angel as well.  Again, beautiful work with nice straight lines.


Not be be outdone, Roxane also completed a Modern Angel as well this week.  Hers is just a little bigger than Rowena's but other than that and the color, the pattern is the same.

Susan R put this finishing touches on her Welcome Window this week and she's taken it home so it can be displayed in the easel that she made it for.  She did wonderful work on this and I love how she changed the sun into an eclipse all on her own.

Sheri completed another butterfly this week and did an incredible job going around the edges with lead on this whimsical Butterfly Lawn Ornament. 


Our last completed project this week belongs to Beth who took her first stained glass lesson from us this week.  As you may have already guessed, her first project was a butterfly  and she took to each of the stained glass steps as if she were a professional.   I have a good feeling about Beth and the windows that she will be making here in class.

Mary continued cutting out her purple Irises and once they were finished she moved to the yellow sections of the flower, and then on to the green leaves.   You can already see that this is really coming together and it won't be long before Mary begins cutting her background glass.

Jeannette has the front side of her large pumpkin window completely soldered and is now working on the flip side.   That means that she'll most likely finish this off when she comes back in.  Her timing appears to be perfect because she's easily going to have this beautiful  window hanging up in time for Thanksgiving AND Halloween as well! 

Rowena has started working on this new Peacock Suncatcher that she found on the internet and it really looks like it's going to be a great design.  I can't wait to see this one completed (which will almost certainly be next week).

Linda F has started working on a vibrant red NOEL window for a wrought iron frame that she has.  Sadly, the metal slot that the stained glass must slide has prevented her from using globs for the Holly Berries since they are too thick to fit into the frame.  Also, since her background is red, red berries would get lost so she's using her artistic license and making the berries yellow.   We'll see how they look when she returns but I can guarantee that they're going to look wonderful.

Myrt is so quiet throughout class-- she just focuses on her window and before I know it she's got another completed project.  In this case her Fleur De Lis is just about ready to be foiled.   I have no clue when she got all of these pieces ground but here we are looking at a window that fits together wonderfully. 

Terry is wrapping up her work on this large Santa Face and I don't mean foiling her pieces.   That part of this project happened while she was at home.  This week she spent her time soldering and it will surely be completed next week allowing her to move along to her next project.


Martha's cutting is going slowly but surely.  Just look at how superbly these pieces fit together without even having touched the grinder yet.   This will be a cinch to grind if she keeps cutting this accurately and that's they key to a wonderful window.

Barbara H is grinding away at her Tulip window and doing a great job at it.  There are a LOT of pieces in this so it will surely take a while for her to get all of them fitting together but in the end this is going to be spectacular. Let's face facts here and admit that it already is! 


Linda L is working on a second LOVE Window and I tried to get the reflection of the fluorescent light bulb on her project so you can actually see some of the clear glass pieces that she has cut out and fitting so perfectly.   The second one always goes quicker and again we're seeing proof of that here.

Look below and you'll see Cindy's study in straight pins.   Wait a minute, is that a mermaid under there?!   Good eyes!  This tiny mermaid that measures just 8 x 2 inch suncatcher actually has 36 pieces in it!   That's 4.5 pieces in every inch and also why Cindy has it smothered  in pins-- to keep anything from shifting out of place where we might never figure out where it goes again!

Tracey began working on a Butterfly Lawn Ornament  and I love her color choice.  The only problem is that try as I may to bring the colors out it still looks as though she's used shades of grey!   Trust me, these are green.   Perhaps when there's some light behind it the camera will pick up the colors correctly.

Bonnie worked on leaves for her Flower Cornucopia and then picked out her next pattern-- a Thanksgiving Turkey with a pumpkin.   I have no doubt that she'll make short work of this project.

Brenda has her first of two Transom Windows ready to be soldered.  She sized it out with her final border and has decided to begin working on her second transom when she returns to class.   With her bevels all wrapped already she'll be cutting out background glass as soon as she walked in the door.


Susan D is still working on leaves for her Flower Cornucopia and as you can see she's been busy surrounding the edges of her hundred leaves with lead.  It's a slow and time consuming process but each week brings her closer to the finish line.

In the end we have Tasha who worked on two different window this week-- a Smiling Mouth and a Cat Window.  Then there's Becky S who worked on her Geometric window.  You might be wondering, what do Becky and Tasha have in common?  Well they both cleared out of the shop so fast that I never got a picture of their work.   That won't happen again, that's for sure!

So that's about it for this post.  We had another weekend workshop on Saturday and Sunday and if all goes according to plan you won't have to wait 4 months before I write about it!

Bayou Salé GlassWorks

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