Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Off The Beaten Path w/Stained Glass

Happy New Year!  Guess I'm a bit late with that one, but I've definitely been keeping busy.  As with a lot of crafters, after Christmas I set about organizing & re-organizing my crafty spaces with all my new creative toys--it was fun to do, but took a bit of time.  But I've also been taking a few classes myself in an area outside of papercrafting, doing something I had previously decided I wouldn't persue -- working with Stained Glass.

My Dad was a self-taught stained glass artist.  He started out reading books, and going to glass art shops for supplies, & asking questions.  But his work was amazing!  He developed techniques that I wish I had the expertise of today.  I remember watching him work--he had developed his skill so quickly and he was so patient & precise.  I'm not even that patient when I paper-craft.  lol.  When I graduated High School I was really into unicorns, so Dad made me a beautiful unicorn stained glass hanging--it is by far my favorite gift of all those that he subsequently made for me...but I cherish them all.  Just after he passed away, a couple years ago, I was browsing at a bookstore and found a lovely book called Pretty Little Things, by Sally Jean Alexander.  The ideas were wonderful for smaller glass projects--vintage and gorgeous!  I saw a small glass chair and immediately I thought of the empty chair where my Dad once sat.  I was thinking that would make a great ornament project for Christmas using my Dad's glass.  Needless to say, I bought the book and decided it just might be something I could get interested in trying.

Fast forward to Christmas holidays 2009 -- one year after Dad's passing, almost to the day, I began my first stained glass class.  It was actually emotionally taxing at first, especially since Mom had given me some of Dad's tools to work with including one of his first soldering irons, and I was afraid I was too far out of my realm of comfort.  But my instructor, Jill Wicke, was awesome, and really did a great job with the class.  I had to take a break after the beginner class because her teaching schedules and mine collided.  But I resumed this year with the intermediate class, and I'm now I've almost completed the advanced class (not sure I'm all that advanced--but there ya go, it's progression). 

I did venture off a bit from my classes to make that glass chair -- the one that got me thinking about branching out.  It was a lot harder than I thought it would be, but as a beginner I am pretty pleased with the results.  I made one for Mom, G'ma, & myself at Christmas time, but I still have five other brothers/sister that I still need to make one for. 

Anyway, this is definitely off the beaten path for me -- but thought you might like to take a glance into something a bit different to start off 2011 with me.  My current project, a three dimensional lamp, will be completed in a couple weeks and I'll post a photo when it's completed. 

Next post -- back to papercrafting...and a bit of recycling too, of course.  =)

My 1st Stained Glass project - I used my Dad's glass in the four corners, two red diamonds, and center of flower.  I love how the textured glass makes it look somewhat like rain, all aimed in towards the flowers--despite the snow.

Butterfly Fan Lamp - all made with Dad's glass.  I love the copper patina.

Thanks for stopping by!  Lisa


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