Monday, September 28, 2020

That's Showbiz, Baby!

Here's a problem that happens every now and then-- the unexpected solder drop onto a piece of glass. No matter how careful you are it's easy to have a stray blob of solder fall off your iron and land on a piece of glass that's already tacked into place. Most times these drops simply flatten out onto the glass without incident but sometimes (if there's a lot of solder involved) it can take the shape of a small blob and just sit there heating up your glass. When this happens your best course of action is to keep your iron OFF of that solder blob! Touching your soldering iron to it in the hopes of somehow removing it usually cracks the glass.  Leaving it alone is usually your best course of action.  If you feel you MUST try to remove the blob you must act quickly and hold the end of your roll solder into it and let it cool for four or five seconds. If you got your solder into the blob quickly enough a gently lift upward should lift the solder up and off of your glass. Remember that excessive heat in any small area can break glass and touching your soldering iron to an already hot  solder blob will most likely cause a crack to occur. 


First up we have Angie's Autumn Pumpkin Scene which was completed this past week and she and everyone in the class were thoroughly impressed with the end result.   Angie never rushed while making this and yet she moved along at a pace that only a skilled glass crafter could achieve.   Her colors, her precision in cutting and grinding, and everything right down to her soldering shine vibrantly in this piece.  


Jeannette has been filling in old window frames with stained glass for a while now but this one just flows so beautifully that I think it's stunning.   Jeannette's projects get done super fast because of how much works she does at home between classes.  She's a success story of mine for sure!

With PERFECT glass for her water and her border, Linda L's tranquil Tree by the Sea really calms you down when you look at it.  Just look at that flowing water!  This is another window that saw the light of day faster than most stained glass artists could make something of this complexity.

Lisa's back and she put the finishing touched in on her ABCDEFGHIJKLMNOPQRSTUVWXYZ Panel.  Say what?  Yep, hidden in this panel is every letter in the alphabet.  I hadn't heard of this design before Lisa brought it to my attention but if you look it up you'll find that it's a well known piece of art that Lisa has now immortalized in glass.   I think this could very well be a first!

Martha's latest Franklin Streetlight Window may be my favorite one yet!  There's just something about that blue sky and border.  As you can see, she has this down to a science now and I think she could make her next one with her eyes closed through most if not all of it.

Can you believe that Mary was worried that the glass that she used for the flipped areas of her flower petals would blend into the un-flipped petals?  As you can see there was nothing to worry about at all because her colors are perfect.  Mary's come a long way since she first started and wait until you see her next window.   She's not afraid of a lot of pieces, that's for sure!

Susan D made a Love Window and yes, her penmanship is perfect.  There's no mistaking what this says unlike some versions I've see of this on the internet. I'll go ahead and say it-- You've got to LOVE this pattern!


Shawn finished wrapping her Mario Window and then tacked it together which then allowed her to cut a border.  After getting the border cut out (in a perfect color no less) she called it a night but she only needs to grind, wrap and then tack these pieces into place before she starts soldering this fun loving window.

MiMi got the last of her pieces ground for her Combat Vet Window and par for the course with MiMi,  it fits together perfectly.  She's begun the wrapping process and before you know it she'll have this ready for solder and a border.  Look at that perfect lettering!

Linda F started working on a Thanksgiving Cornucopia Window and it already looks like a winner to me.  She's already grinding this just one week into starting it!  Gorgeous color choices are going to make this window really stunning when it's lit from behind.

Mary Grace finished wrapping her Address Number Window and then even got it tacked together.  Next week it's border time and then solder.   I have to say that I was impressed at how confident she's been making this and that's a very good thing.

Cindy is working on a Colorado Logo Window and she's doing it the hard way!  I know it's hard to see the white snow capped mountain since it's resting on white pattern paper but she got it cut out and fitting perfectly on top of the blue mountain.  That's impressive work indeed.
Annette was busy grinding the larger of her two Fleur De Lis' and it's fitting together nicely.  I know she's worried about making a window this size but once this is tacked together the hard part is going to be done and the rest will be child's play.
Barbara is back and her LSU window officially has all of its glass cut out and ground.  She tacked together her window as soon as she walked in the door and then she got the first inner border cut and tacked into place.   Before she left she also got her final border cut so we should see her soldering this when she comes back next week.
Melissa is fast approaching the completion of her Quadruple Fleur De Lis Window.  She only has to grind two more background diamonds and then she can wrap and tack this impressive piece.  She's not adding a border to this-- the zinc channel will for a thin border all on its own.

With just four fill-ins left to cut and grind Jan will surely get her background cut and attached when she comes back in next week.  It won't be long now before this poodle is a doggie in a window.


Helen started work on a Fleur De Lis Panel that she will follow up with 4(?) more over the weeks to come. I was very impressed with her grinding this week.  It's spot on all around this piece.

Beth's Turtle Suncatcher is a VERY detailed Suncatcher indeed.   There are just four more piece of glass to cut and I have a sneaking suspicion that this could be finished when we next see it. 

Last week Cheryl cut out her version of the Franklin Street Lamp Window and this week she got it all ground.  She's taken it home to wrap her pieces so I'm thinking she can get borders on this when she comes back in.  Time will tell.


Tracey got yet another Butterfly Lawn Ornament cut and ground while she was in class this week.  It's essentially the same color scheme as her last one and I promise to get a finished picture of it when this one is completed!

Lastly we look at the pattern that Sheri is about to embark on.   She's starting a pair of Koi Fish surrounded by Lily Pads and Water Lilies.  She's got her glass picked out and will begin cutting when she comes back in.


And that as they say is that (for this week anyway)!


Bayou Salé GlassWorks




Monday, September 21, 2020

A Rock In The Y

 MiMi's Butterfly window is downright perfect from the colors right on down to the soldering, cutting, and grinding.   There's not a flaw to be found because MiMi takes her time and makes sure that everything is perfect before moving along to another piece.  I'm making a note here, huge success. It's hard to overstate my satisfaction.


Next we have Sheri's Fractured Rose Window which is another example of perfect cutting and grinding.  The idea of this window keeps calling out to me and I know that someday I'll do something similar because as Sheri knows my tastes run towards the unconventional which is just what this window is.  Beautiful.

Jeannette has certainly been busy as you can tell by looking at her pair of Flower Hand Mirrors and her Dove Suncatcher.  These mirrors are  very popular gifts so we could be seeing more of these being made in the near future, especially since Jeannette's look so wonderful.
Shelley's Address Numbers aren't as colorful as she thought they would be but in the end I think they look much better with a blue border than with a multi-colored border.  And everyone agrees because that glass she used for her border is suddenly in demand now that students have seen it used.

Linda F mixed up three Drink Lawn Ornaments this week and this week they were staked and are now ready to display in her yard.   Have a drink on Linda! 

Belinda's second Church Window is a wrap!  She's already inserted it into her front door and she said it fit like a glove.  It looks great and it shows off her skills to everyone who walks into her house!

Susan R put the finishing touches on her Sunflower Heart Lawn Ornament and it really turned out nice indeed.  These are popular for a reason and Susan shows that in her work on this.

Helen  finished up 2 more Crosses his week and she says she's only got a handful more of these to go before moving along to a full sized window.  She also completed a Christmas Tree but alas, I have no photo proof of it.

Beth may be making a Turtle but she's moving along on it as quickly as a Hare!  With almost all of her pieces ground already, she's going to be wrapping this before you know it.  And its fits together wonderfully!

Cindy's got her Geometric Window with a Southwestern flare all wrapped and ready to be tacked and soldered.  She'll be jumping around while adding lead to this to avoid putting too much heat in one area.   I tend to do every other line and then come back and fill in the missed lines with solder.

 Angie has all of the glass cut for her huge Pumpkin window and she's just about ready to flip this over to solder the back side.  Stunning is the best word to describe this decidedly Autumn themed Window.

Lara finished wrapping her 3rd Flower/Leaf Window and then tacked it together before calling it a night.   Next week she'll easily get a border attached and then move along to soldering this!

Melissa not only finished wrapping her background pieces for her Fleur De Lis Window but she got it tacked together as well.   She made sure that everything was laid out perfectly before applying the lead and now she'll be able to grind the background pieces to the 4 FDL's without having to worry about anything growing or shifting out of place.
Roxane's Nativity Scene will have two other panels that match which will be mounted one on each side of this window but they haven't been drawn up to the correct size yet.   This week she started grinding everything that she's already cut because until I get those patterns ready we don't know what will happen with the sky.  Hopefully that will be resolved when she comes back in. 

Linda L had to make a major decision this week regarding how many borders she was going to put on her Tree by The Waterside Window and what colors they would be.   We ended up photoshopping together some  ideas and then picked a winner involving a small clear inner border followed by a thicker border that matches the water. She's taken the final border home to wrap so that she can tack and then put a finished solder bead on this when she comes back in.

Ann was able to use the pattern that Melissa finished using earlier this week and started cutting all of the straight line cuts that make up her diamond background.    She's ready to begin grinding and then she'll do the same exact thing that Melissa did this week-- wrap and tack together all of her pieces save four the four diamonds that the Fleur De Lis' will be cut into.
Susan D spent the day grinding her Love and Hearts Window and it fits together to the utmost perfection.   The hand writing matches the pattern so well that you can't even tell it's been cut!  What this means is that Susan is set to begin wrapping her pieces when she comes back in next week.
Martha almost has her third Franklin Street Light Window completed-- there are only a few lines left to go on the border before this is finished.  Look to see this among our completed windows in our next post.
Cheryl is making a Franklin Street Light Window of her own and she's finished cutting her glass and ready to begin grinding it.  She's using an antique green glass background that she got from Martha which is unavailable now.  It's a shame because everyone is asking for a piece f this after seeing it!


Mary's got the front of her Magnolia Window all soldered and will be working on the back side when she comes back.  I'd say that there's a fairly good chance that this will be finished when we see it again next week.

Mary Grace got all of the pieces ground for her Address Window and is now ready to begin wrapping.  It won't be long now before she picks out a border and gets ready to solder!

Jeanne L got her first border cut, ground, wrapped and tacked into place on her Fruit Bowl Window and then got her final border cut and ground as well.  She's taken the pieces for her final border home with her and hopes of coming  in with them all foiled and ready to be attached next week.

Lastly, Tracey  finished working on her Butterfly Lawn Ornament but I neglected to get a picture of it which is too bad because the colors she picked were superb.

And there you have it.  We have a lot of pieces still in the construction phase so there will be a lot of completed projects in the weeks to come so be sure to drop on by again!


Bayou Salé GlassWorks

Monday, September 14, 2020

The Bohemian Rhapsody / David Cassidy Connection?

What is the 10/30 Rule?  It's a simple phrase that will keep you accountable and motivated to bring every project you make even better.  Simply take the 10 extra steps or 30 extra seconds to do what you are doing correctly and you will save more time later on down the road plus end up with a project that looks better.  Try it, you'll like it.  Guaranteed.

 Cheryl's Address Window was completed this week and her soldering is superb.   She completely understands that slow and steady is the only way to make the lead flow smoothly.   Soldering is something you just can't rush no matter what kind of  hurry you're in.

Helen finished up two pieces this week-- another beveled Cross Suncatcher and a Pumpkin with wire work and some 3D leaves tacked onto it.  Two beautiful suncatchers from our newest student who worked for the most part on these at home-- that's accomplishment!

MiMi has been working on this exquisitely detailed Butterfly Window at home and this week she brought it in all tacked together and ready for borders.   After deciding on two complimentary colors we then cut the glass into strips and cut their lengths down to make the perfect border pieces.  Before she left she got a brass channel added and that leaves just the backside left to be soldered.

Susan D started work on a Love Window and with all of her pieces cut out she's already begun grinding it.  Perfect cutting and fitting is very important in this design because the neatness of the letters is the end result of perfect grinding.  As you can see Susan is well on her way towards a window containing perfect penmanship.


Beth began working on a large Turtle Suncatcher and it's very detailed indeed.   Still, she got it all cut out and is ready to begin grinding all those pieces to achieve one perfectly fitted Turtle!  there are some optional toenails for this piece but I think we're going to leave them out to save stress and strain on Beth!

Linda F is now a mixologist since she's working on three mixed drink ornaments.   The first two have been slightly redesigned while the third is her own pattern.  I love her olives-- probably because they're a PITA to do and anything involving extra work pays out handsomely in the end!

Linda L had a broken piece of sky glass which could have been problematic because the sky glass isn't made anymore and she didn't have any big pieces remaining after she finished cutting.  So what to do?  Alter the pattern!  I'll bet you have no clue where the extra piece is that allowed us to use the broken piece of sky without it looking like a break. 

Mary Grace began an Address Window of her own and she's using a randomized background which means that we DON'T want the background to have a grain that matches throughout the piece.   To accomplish this she simply mixed up all of the pattern pieces and placed them any which way on the sheet of glass that she picked for her background.  She's got this ready to be ground already! 


Roxane is a cutting machine.  Her Nativity Window is moving along very quickly and it wont be long until she moves on over to the grinder.   She was a little unsure about the colors on Mary's clothing but combining blue and white is the only thing you have to do to make it look like Mary.  The placement of those colors really doesn't matter.

Cindy made incredible strides on her Geometric Window.   She wanted to add some more colors so she even chopped up some of the larger pieces so she could add more detail (and thus color) into this design.   Amazing.

Angie's Pumpkin Window was tacked together this week and then she got the first border cut, ground, and attached as well.  She only has one border left to go and then she'll be ready to finish this massive project well in time for Thanksgiving.


Melissa's Fleur De Lis Window is also coming together quickly as she wraps all of her background pieces.  There's a good chance she'll be able to tack this together next week and then she'll only need to cut the background diamonds for each of her four Fleur De Lis.


With the front of her church all soldered and the back side almost completely finished, Belinda is just about set to attach the lead cross we made (as seen to the right of her window) and call this a completed church!  There's no doubt in my mind that she'll have this easily completed upon her return.  I also want to try something we normally don't do-- we'll see what Belinda thinks...


Ann's four Fleur De Lis' have been wrapped and tacked so she's ready to begin cutting out her diamond background pattern.   With a little luck that will happen next week (if the pattern becomes available which I think it will) but if not then she'll surely begin it the following week.


Jeanne L got the front side of her Fruit Basket Window soldered and next week she'll bring in the glass she plans to use for her first border so we can strip it and get it all attached.  Jeanne has used 1/4" foil on this window which will give it a much thicker lead line and thus a Lead Came look.  I'm even going to recommend finishing it in silver (perhaps greying it a bit) to complete the illusion


Jan has got all of her Poodle Window ground and has begun wrapping her pieces in copper foil.  She's missing a piece here and there (which is standard fare when dealing with a lot of pieces in a window) but we'll easily fill them in once she tacks this together.  After that there are just a few background pieces and a border left to cut to finish it all off.


After Mary got her Magnolia tacked together she set upon bordering it with a nice dark green glass.  Round borders are more work that straight ones but once you know the secret to grinding them they can still move along pretty quickly as evident by the fact that Mary got her border cut, ground, wrapped, and tacked all inside of one class.  This flower is now ready for its final solder. 


After a little work Martha got her two borders attached to her latest (3rd) Franklin Street Lamp Window.   For some reason the glass didn't want to cut easily (sometimes it happens) but as always, Martha persevered and the job done got done. As much as I loved her first one I think I like this color scheme the best.

Shawn started wrapping all of the pieces that make up her Mario Window just in time for his (Mario's) 35th birthday.  She's wrapping this in black backed foil so she can finish her lead with black patina because we think that cartoon characters look best finished in black rather than copper. 

Shelley was originally going to go with a border made up of many different colors but when she put all the glass around her Address Numbers she felt that the viewer's focus went to the super bright border rather than the numbers.   In the end she decided to go with a nice Baroque Blue glass that has a bit of pizazz all on its own.  I think its a great choice.

Sheri is soldering her Fractured Rose Window and now that the iridized glass is in place you can easily see this window the way it's supposed to look.   I have a sneaking suspicion that this will be completed when she comes back in.

Susan R finished grinding her Sunflower Heart Suncatcher and then wrapped all of her pieces as well.  The missing piece that you don't see in the picture was the last piece to be wrapped and was in Susan's hand as I snapped the picture.   This is another project that will no doubt be completed next week.


Tracey moves like a blur with a high degree of precision!  She came in, traced out a butterfly pattern, cut all of the glass and then ground it all as well.  Look at that fit!  And half  of it is wrapped as well!  I think it's safe to say that she's really got this stained glass thing down now.

And guess what?  Annette is back already!   She sure surprised me when she walked in the door looking fantastic (Not that she normally doesn't).   She took her time tracing out and then cutting out her paper pattern and then called it a night after deciding on what glass she'll be using for her large Fleur De Lis when she comes back in next week.  It's great to have her back in class so quickly and I have to say that I'll never think about Wolverines without laughing from here on out!