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Posts Tagged ‘stained glass’

I just thought I would take a few minutes and give you all a little bit of an insight of my life as a stained glass artist.  When I finished typing this I re-realised quite how much work it takes to create the stained glass pieces I offer for sale.

First up I need glass! LOTS of glass!

Glass Stash

This is a photo of my glass stash last year.  It’s increased since then and remember this is just the glass!  In addition to all this I have all the rolls of wire, the copper foil, the beads, the trimmings and ribbons, all the tools and equipment I need, some which have taken over a part of my kitchen (oops!), to name just a few items…

Plus on top of all that I also have all my jewellery making supplies.. I have a beautiful bead collection now, sterling silver, silver plated, copper and coloured plated wire and findings, plus another full compliment of jewellery making tools, various bits of equipment..

Oh and my ever increasing book collection!

My work space is getting a little crowded now!

Most of my stained glass creations start out as a flat piece of coloured glass before I set to it with my trusty Sharpie marker pens, black for light coloured glass and the silver ones for the darker colour glass as it shows up so much better! I draw my designs on the glass and then move onto the next stage, cutting and breaking the glass.

amber gold stained glass

A sheet of my amber gold stained glass

A steady hand is essential for this part but if I have a bit of a ‘oops’ moment I have my glass grinder to hand to smooth any parts which aren’t quite right.  All of my stained glass stars make a trip to the glass grinder to be smoothed to perfection as I really can’t have stained glass stars with nasty edges as they wouldn’t look right.

The next stage is to apply the copper foil to the stained glass shapes and then this has to be ‘burnished’ which basically means it gets ‘squished’ onto the glass so it sticks properly and is nice and smooth.  Next up flux is applied to all the copper foiled edges as this makes the solder stick to the copper.

Then things get HOT HOT HOT!  Time to ‘tin’ the copper foiled edges.  Tinning is when I apply a thin layer of solder to the front, back and sides of the foiled glass piece. (NOTE TO SELF – if the soldering iron slips it is NOT a good idea to try and grab it!  Nasty burns can ensure as a result of this!).  Next up the pieces of tinned glass are put into their final positions and soldered together to create the design I have in mind.  I’m a bit picky about soldering and love to see a beautifully smooth piece of solder work.  My birthstone pieces have all their wire decorations added here so I can join the pieces with my beaded links later on.  Once this is done and the piece has cooled down we move onto the next stage.

Cleaning!

A trip to the kitchen is next (normally via the kettle!) and all the pieces of glass work are washed in warm water with a splash of Fairy Liquid to remove any traces of flux.  I also wipe all my solder lines over with some fine wire wool to remove any ‘spotting’ or marks caused when the flux and solder mix.  I LOVE LOVE LOVE my solderwork to look all shiny and polished when a piece is finished and so a few minutes with the wire wool sorts that out for me.  If I am applying a coloured patina to my glasswork, as you can see on some of my terrariums and Air Plant Holders, the piece is dried before I ‘paint’ on the patina and the piece is washed again carefully.

white rose suncatcher stained glass

A black patina applied to a white stained glass Rennie Mackintosh style rose suncatcher.

The next stage is polishing the piece and for that it is back into the living room and a damp foam sponge is used to apply a stained glass polish and cleaner.  This is then wiped off and the piece is polished with a soft cloth (read soft tea towels from Wilkisons purchased just for glass polishing!)

The next stage (yes there is more!) is for me to add any ‘extras’ to the piece.  As you can see by browsing my shop many of my pieces are hung from silver plated chains or ribbons, these are added at this stage.  Some of my other pieces, especially my birthstone pieces, are joined with beaded links.  I make all of these by hand and I will occasionally spend an evening in front of the TV with my beads, wire and tools making little beaded links and the little wire loops to add to my stained glasswork so I have a bit of a stash tucked away.

sapphire september birthday birthstone suncatcher

The beaded wire links on a Sapphire birthstone suncatcher. In this case the links are genuine sapphire and crystal beads.

Now do you think I’m finished?  Not yet!

The last stage is getting them from my work space to the ‘internet’.  I take a series of photographs of all my pieces, select the best ones, crop them and make them ‘pretty’ before creating a listing on my website for the world to see.

Then and only then can I relax.. Or in my case get on with the next idea I have in mind 🙂

 

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With July literally just around the corner I thought I would quickly pop up a post to show you some of the stained glass suncatchers I have created using red stained glass to represent the gorgeous Ruby.  Each one of my ruby inspired stained glass is handcrafted in my studio and would make a lovely gift for a friend or loved one if they were a July baby.

So with a TADAAAAAAA… here they are 🙂

I hope you like them as much as I enjoyed creating them.  If you would like more information about the pieces please click on the photos to be taken to my website.

Ruby Birthstone Suncatcher

 

 

 

 

Ruby red stained glass circles with silver coloured wire spirals

 

 

 

 

 

 

July Birthday Ruby Birthstone Suncatcher

 

 

 

 

Little squares of red stained glass joined with red beaded links.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ruby Star Cascade Stained Glass Suncatcher

 

 

 

 

 

Red stained glass stars in a beautiful cascade design.

 

 

 

 

 

Ruby Birthstone Suncatcher

 

 

 

 

 

A pretty suncatcher made using ruby red squares and hanging from a silver plated chain.

 

 

 

 

Ruby Red Stained Glass Star Circle Suncatcher

 

 

 

 

 

A gorgeous circle of ruby red stars hanging from a 15cm silver plated chain.

 

 

 

 

A Ruby Red Stained Glass Star For July Birthdays

 

 

 

A single ruby red star hanging from a 10cm silver plated chain.

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I’ve just finished adding a couple of new stained glass Air Plant terrariums to my website.  One has a pale lilac base and the other a pale pink.  Personally I prefer the pale lilac one but I’ve had a lot of compliments about the pale pink one 🙂

Here is the pale pink one

My pale pink hanging Air Plant terrarium.

My pale pink hanging Air Plant terrarium.

My pale pink hanging Air Plant terrarium.

My pale pink hanging Air Plant terrarium.

And here is the pale lilac one 🙂

A close up of my new lilac stained glass Air Plant terrarium

A close up of my new lilac stained glass Air Plant terrarium

My new lilac stained glass Air Plant holder

My new lilac stained glass Air Plant holder

These little Air Plant terrariums stand about six inches tall and come complete with the little terrarium, the gravel, the Air Plant and an aftercare sheet.  The are designed to hang from the chain supplied with them but if you wish you can remove this and have the terrarium standing on a desk or surface in your home.

I’d love some feedback on these so please feel free to add a comment 🙂

 

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I decided to be a little brave this year and booked a stall at the Banbury & District Show 2013 at the Spiceball Park.  After a couple of weeks of some quite intense creating the day dawned and while it started out a tad cloudy the forecast was good.  Everything was packed up the night before and we were ready to go.  My daughter Romana was enlisted as my helper for the day and she was offering some of her memory wire bracelets for sale.

We arrived in good time and set to work to get the stall ready.  As those who know me can testify I don’t do white, never, not ever and so my cloth was a gorgeous black textured velvet.  I know that isn’t the norm for craft stalls but I’m not ‘normal’ lol 🙂

We worked hard and by about 10.30am we were just about ready to go 🙂  We had a market traders size stall for the day and we were able to make full use of the room which was fantastic 🙂

Here are a few photos of our stall…

Banbury show 2013

Our Stall

We both thought it looked lovely and we attracted quite a lot of interest.

Banbury Show 2013 Ravens Stained Glass

Handcrafted Jewellery And Stained Glass

Jewellery By Ravens Stained Glass

A selection of my handcrafted jewellery. My Tree Of Life pendants created using semi precious gemstones attracted a lot of interest.

Ravens Stained Glass Banbury Show 2013

A selection of my stained glass suncatchers, mosaic coasters and Air Plant terrariums.

Stained Glass Banbury Show 2013

Loving my new Air Plant Terrariums on the left.

It was a really lovely day, the weather was lovely even though it was a bit chilly in the morning and I’d accidentally left my jacket in the car 😦  But it warmed up later.  There was an awful lot going on and we both had a little time to have a wander round and have a look at the rest of the attractions, events and stalls.

All in all we had a great day out in the sun and chances are we will be back again next year 🙂

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What a lovely surprise! I got a message on Facebook this morning from the lovely ZenXStitch telling me she had featured some of my work on her blog today so I had to pop over for a look. I must admit she picked one of my favourite pieces to feature, namely my Chakra Stars & Swirls Suncatcher. I love this piece and it looks beautiful sparkling in a window on a sunny day 🙂

20130604-183002.jpg

You can find the blog post here 🙂
Zenxstitch Blog

Thank you ZenXStitch 🙂

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It must be something to do with spring being on the way but I seem to have gone into ‘flower mode’ at the moment and I’ve been busy creating some pretty new Charles Rennie Makintosh inspired roses.  I’m rather pleased with the way they have turned out and they looked beautiful hanging in my window while I was photographing them.

red rose stained glass suncatcher (2)

Red Rose Suncatcher

My particular favourites are the red and the white ones.  Red because.. well girls love red roses and white because I think the combination of the black patina on the solder works really well with the white glass.

white rose suncatcher stained glass

White Rose Suncatcher

These pretty roses would be a perfect way of having flowers in bloom in your house all year round and the upside is that they need no care at all!

Yellow Rose Suncatcher

Yellow Rose Suncatcher

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WOOHOO!! Christmas is just around the corner 🙂 and for me the preparations started back in JUNE!! Yes, you read that correctly!  The sun was shining on one of the rare sunny days we had this year and there I was cutting green glass into Holly leaves and red glass into Christmas Tree baubles!

Some of my 2012 collection have been seen before but I also have a lot of new goodies on offer too.  I’ve recreated my stained glass Holly Wreath with added improvements 🙂 plus I’ve created a brand new Holly Suncatcher to add to the collection.

I’ve recreated my dinky little stained glass Angel Christmas Tree decorations this year too and I’m offering these for sale in a much wider range of colours.  At the moment there are 10 colours in the range, including a beautiful new white Angel, and I’m sure the colour choice will increase over the next month or so.  Please remember that if you would like the Angels in a colour not currently on offer I can also make to order in the colour of your choice.

I’ve introduced a brand new range of white Star Christmas Tree decorations which are enhanced with glittering beads and charms.  These I am particularly fond of as they are simple but very effective and look beautiful (just my opinion of course!)

At the moment I’m cutting a lot of glass for yet another range of Christmas Tree decorations but you will have to wait until next week to see them.  It’s all kind of hush hush at the moment but I’m on holiday from my day job and plan to spend the week working with my glass creating what I hope to be a beautiful range of decorations.

I think it’s going to be a very busy week 🙂

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