Wednesday, June 15, 2011

#32 - MORE SPACE - From City to Country

Do any of you enjoy stained glass as much as we do? Years ago, I told my husband that I was going to take a class to learn about stained glass techniques. My husband took the time to go along with me on the night that I was registering for the class, and I was surprised to find him saying, "Sign me up too."

For weeks, we stood side by side in a stained glass art studio learning old-school techniques. Pretty soon, we developed a team effort, I would do the copper foiling and David would do most of the cutting, we both would take the rough pieces of glass to soften the edges at the grinding machine. Each of us knew how to do each step, but we learned how to get through a piece of art pretty fast, together.

Turns out, my husband loves taking stained glass What he thought was just going to be a crazy effort to spend time with me, his wife, ended up being one of the best decisions he ever made because he is very talented with stained glass work.

My husband made two FUSED GLASS pieces that will be jewelry. Mine is the blue piece.
I made this by taking a black piece of glass and overlaying tiny hand-cut pieces of
vibrant blue and green Dichroic glass.
And, best yet, he makes beautiful designs and different artistic pieces and gives them to me or our girls.

After we designed our pieces and laid them out, we put the pieces on a sheet
of kiln paper on top of a ceramic plate, then into the kiln for hours.

Joyce programs the digital kiln, specifically designed for glass fusing.
The kiln is constructed differently and operates differently from ceramic kilns.
Years and years ago, during our first lesson in stained glass, we knew we'd eventually use our stained glass knowledge one day in our home. Now, we are making plans for beautiful stained glass accents to our future cabin. We would not be able to afford to pay someone to do this, so we will design and build our own windows for installation during the construction of our cabin in the woods.

Our cabin will be extremely budget conscious, so any touch that we can add ourselves will save us big money and add a touch of elegance to the rustic life.

I am in dreamy-land, looking at our beautiful pieces of work.
The kiln causes the pieces of our glass to meld together which creates a beautiful effect.
Personally, I will be incorporating different beveled glasses and clear glass patterns, maybe as a transom window over the front door with matching side panels.

Any art studio is a happy place for me.
One aspect of having land that we look forward to with great anticipation is having a metal building or some kind of workshop for us to do our projects. Since we'll be doing so much of the cabin's construction ourselves, this workshop is necessary. It will hold our tools, equipment and our materials.

Deputy Dave loves wood-working, we both love stained-glass works and here in the city, we have a small two-car garage and it is used to hold everything needed for the yard here at the house and for our acreage in the country. It holds every imaginable tool for gardening, it has household tools, Deputy Dave's wood-working machinery, etc. so we don't have enough space to actually use for a hobby work station. With the utility trailer stored inside the garage with the huge lawn tractor needed for our acreage sitting on the trailer, we have little room for mobility.

Off-site storage in our area would run at least $70. per month and there would be a potential for theft, so we give up precious space so that we can save money.

After we get moved to our land full-time, I don't know how we'll adjust to having so much space every single day. It will definitely be odd, yet welcomed.

In our "master plan" layout for buildings, fences, barns, etc., on our acreage, we will have to put in this workshop building on a budget. We certainly won't be able to build everything overnight, we will have to go day by day and this is why a master plan is so important. Of course, we are flexible and the master plan will probably change 100 times over as we learn more efficient, practical ways of making the future farm work for us.

Meanwhile, here at the house crammed between two other houses in the city, we manage to find space when needed so we can tackle hobbies, even if that means working during the day in our driveway. But you don't want to work with glass at your kitchen table. Little slivers of glass are a part of your world when working with glass and this is a hobby best kept separate from your regular living quarters. We've worked with stained glass enough to know that it is just like other hobbies, it can be messy, and a glass-kind-of-messy is not so wonderful to have inside your house.

For now, we borrow the studio, pay a small fee, and we have a ball. Once we move from the city, we won't have a few convenient luxuries, such as the stained glass studio down the street. I'm sure we will have to adjust. But, we've lived in different countries, so we can do this. Moving to our acreage is something we look forward to with all of our hearts. Therefore, we won't be around the corner from the stained glass studio any more, but we will have something even better at our fingertips because we'll have our own little workshop in our backyard.

Better yet, while working on my art I can set up a little stereo system and blare Mozart, Rod Stewart, Neil Diamond, Billy Joel or Martina McBride and let time slip by as I am engrossed in my work. Since I was an art major in college, this would make my soul sing along with my voice booming "R-R-ROXANNE"

We're getting ready to add backs to the jewelry so they can be used
as necklaces. Now, we just have to make matching little earrings.
Once we are completely finished with our necklaces, I will post updated pictures. It's hard to picture without the clasps attached to the back and without a chain or alternative type of necklace chain.

Above all, we have a beautiful time together as we create more beautiful things. Once we're in the country, we'll have more room for all things beautiful! However, my city claustophobia is increasing; I am ready for some SPACE!


Rae said...

Very pretty work!

Oh, and Neil Diamond is a god. I got to see him in Portland. 8th row. Oh yeah!

Lana from Farm Life Lessons said...

I AGREE!!! I saw Neil Diamond about two years ago in Houston, after I'd just been discharged from the hospital for a serious surgery; had just had my 10th rib removed along with a huge mass removed from my abdomen and was left with a six inch incision stapled together but I was NOT going to miss Neil Diamond. It was worth. My husband thought I was crazy and he spent the entire night trying to make sure no one bumped into me...not an easy task at a concert. It was one of the best nights of my life.

LindaG said...

A ready made business when you retire. :)