Saturday, August 24, 2013

Holiday Holly Wreath Stained Glass Light Catcher Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather

Holiday Holly Wreath Stained Glass Light Catcher Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. Visit holidaysandmemories.com to see Martin's other works of art!
 
No worry about this wreath wilting during the holidays!  And its vibrant colors will sparkle in the sun.


 
 
It measures approximately 6" x 8-3/4" and is made of stained glass soldered together using the copper foil method!  A loop at the top provides a convenient attach point for hanging in a window or other desired place.  The lead may be left the natural color you see in the pictures, or black patina applied, at your option.  Just let us know at check-out.
This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.
 
Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch


Friday, August 23, 2013

Holiday Holly Wreath Stained Glass Light Catcher Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather

Holiday Holly Wreath Stained Glass Light Catcher Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. Visit holidaysandmemories.com to see Martin's other works of art!
 
No worry about this wreath wilting during the holidays!  And its vibrant colors will sparkle in the sun.
 
It measures approximately 6" x 8-3/4" and is made of stained glass soldered together using the copper foil method!  A loop at the top provides a convenient attach point for hanging in a window or other desired place.  The lead may be left the natural color you see in the pictures, or black patina applied, at your option.  Just let us know at check-out.
This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.
 
Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch



Thursday, August 22, 2013

Rose Leaded Stained Glass Treasure Keepsake Jewelry Box by Martin Prather

Rose Leaded Stained Glass Treasure Keepsake Jewelry Box Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. See Martin's other works of art at holidaysandmemories.com
 
This charming stained glass keepsake box is about 6 inches square and 1-1/2" deep.  With a mirror-glass interior your keepsakes will sparkle in the light!  The elevated corner shelf allows you to put your favorite keepsake on a pedestal.  The lead may be left a natural color, or black patina applied, at your option.  This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.
 
Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch

Autumn Halloween Pumpkin Stained Glass Ornament Light Catcher Handmade by Martin Prather

Autumn Pumpkin Stained Glass Ornament Light Catcher Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. See Martin's other works of art at holidaysandmemories.com
 
Add to your fall decorations with this festive pumpkin.  It measures approximately 6" x 6" and is made of stained glass soldered together using the copper foil.... no plastic phonies here!  A brass chain provides a convenient attach point for hanging in a window or other desired place.  The lead may be left the natural color you see in the pictures, or black patina applied, at your option.  Just let us know at check-out. 
This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.
 
Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch

Turtle Leaded Stained Glass Treasure Keepsake Jewelry Box by Martin Prather

Turtle Leaded Stained Glass Treasure Keepsake Jewelry Box Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. See all of Martin's works of art at holidaysandmemories.com

This charming stained glass keepsake box measures about 6-5/8 inches by 4 inches and 1-3/4 inches deep.  With a mirror-glass interior your keepsakes brilliance will reflect well in the light!  In this cleaver design, the turtles feet are used as a handles to open the box. The elevated interior back shelf allows you to put your favorite keepsake in more prominent view.  The lead may be left a natural color, or black patina applied, at your option.  This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.

Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch

Eagle Flag Patriotic Stained Glass Light Catcher USA by Martin Prather

The Making of an Eagle by Martin Prather

See Martin's other works of art at holidaysandmemories.com

The process leading to the creation of the eagle/flag “suncatcher” stained glass is explained here.
General Process Overview:
  1. Gather your ideas and samples and develop a cartoon showing a rough sketch of the finished piece
  2. Create a working drawing of the product and scale and crop to the desired size and shape
  3. Decide on colors and inventory select glass colors and types
  4. Pick an assembly method (copper foil or lead came)
  5. Make pattern pieces and assembly drawing
  6. Cut glass and grind, as necessary
  7. Apply (in this case) copper foil and burnish, assemble pieces and tack-solder
  8. Solder front completely, then the back, and clean to remove flux and loose solder
  9. Apply Patina, wash and dry
1. Gather your ideas and samples and develop a cartoon showing a rough sketch of the finished piece
I had an eagle pattern from 35 years ago and wanted to do more with it than just an eagle head.  I have seen other glass hangings that incorporated a flag, so decided to create one.  This was the starting eagle pattern:
 
I centered it on an 8-1/2 x 11” page and added stripes to the right of the eagle. 
In creating a stained glass piece one has to weigh factors such as the scale, size of glass pieces, and the realism desired.  The pieces can be too difficult to cut and time consuming to produce if they are too small.  If too large, the desired detail can be lost.  So, the designer needs to make those choices for the regions of the piece that matter.  Also, inside corners and curves are harder to cut, so a boundary between pieces of glass may be necessary. 
I found a star-shape on the internet, so used that as the basis for the stars used and created the following line drawing:

 
Next was to add more detail below the eagle head.  And then change the angle coming from the right star-upper left point to reduce the small sliver piece to get:
 
2. Create a working drawing of the product and scale and crop to the desired size and shape
Initially, I had a frame I considered using for the eagle, so used it as a template to create the oval design.  To properly proportion the eagle in the oval I reduced the line drawing to 74% on the copier.  Or I could have drawn a 1” grid on the working drawing and then redrawn it on a grid of ¾” spacing parallel lines.  I colored the drawing in PhotoShop and cut it out to create this “mockup”:
 
Upon reviewing some REAL eagle pictures, I saw that there are more white feathers below the beak, so I revised the coloring
 
3. Decide on colors and inventory select glass colors and types
Having decided on the general colors above, I inventoried the glass selection available and chose similar colors, mostly using “Spectrum” (brand) glass.
4. Pick an assembly method (copper foil or lead came)
For traditional stained glass construction one chooses from either the copper foil method, or the lead-came method.  In the former, rolls of varying width and sticky backed copper foil are wrapped around the edges of each piece, like you see here, where I tacked the pieces before overall soldering:
Using the lead came method, 6’ lengths of lead came are cut down to fit between the glass pieces and soldered only where the lead piece meets another.  It is up to the artist which method is chosen.  Copper foil produces a finer, more delicate appearance in some applications.  The lead came can look heavier and “bulkier” in the design.  I chose copper foil here.
5. Make pattern pieces and assembly cartoon
On a copy of my scale line drawing I drew the required oval.  Then, produced a layered stack, as follows:
-Pattern paper on the bottom (like file-folder thickness)
-then carbon paper
-then blank sheet of white bond paper
-then more carbon paper
-then the scale line drawing
This stack needs to stay in “register”, either by stapling together in a couple places, or holding securely.
Next, I redrew the lines on the working drawing copy using a straightedge and freehand with a ball-point pen so that I got a “carbon copy” onto the white bond, as well as on the pattern paper sheet.  I also numbered the pieces for ease of identity later.  The alternative to using carbon paper is to use a light table.
I now have a numbered drawing for reference, a white bond page with pieces numbered I will use to lay out the cut glass, as I produce them (so I can gage their relative positions), and a sheet of pattern pieces on one sheet.  A special pair of 3-bladed scissors are then used to cut out EACH pattern piece, leaving 1/16” between each piece for the foil and variations in the glass.  This shows some of the pattern pieces, in progress:
6. Cut glass and grind, as necessary
I created the eagle first.  Knowing the general direction of the eagle’s feathers, I tried to select white streaky glass that best represented that flow.  Similar choices were made with the yellow beak and the brown feathers.  The red and white stripes have streaks in one direction, so chose the same left-right selection for those pieces.  On most pieces I did some wet grinding to correct for sharp edges and pieces that were a little large.  Glass usually has a smooth and rough side, so typically I cut with the pattern upside-down on the smooth side to get a better cut with the oiled glass cutters.  Then I broke off edges at the score lines before grinding to size.
7. Apply (in this case) copper foil and burnish, assemble pieces and tack-solder
I cut a few pieces and then foiled those, burnished them (rubbed all the foil surfaces with a wooden lath to ensure a tight contact), arranging them on the easel and holding them in position on the working drawing using the horseshoe nails you see, and applied liquid flux, and tack-soldered them….mainly at the corners.  Then back to cut a few more, etc.  I used a flattened jewel for his eye.  I wrapped it with copper foil and soldered it, as with the other pieces.  Then, on to the red and white stripes.  I measured the depth of the 10 stripes to come up with an average and cut just enough red and white of that width.  I started cutting individual pieces with the middle stripe and worked up and down from there.  I cut the lengths first because the individual pattern pieces varied a little in width because they were cut by hand and having them all the same width, initially, would ensure some uniformity in the widths.  By starting in the middle I could take out any “slack”, as I approached the top and bottom of the oval.  Next, on to the stars and blue on the left side.  After all tacking was done, I removed most of the nails, as well as the drawing underneath (to use in the future and reduce any additional soiling with flux and hot solder), and wrapped the perimeter with a piece of channel-shaped came. 
8. Solder front completely, then the back, and clean to remove flux and loose solder
Then I fluxed and soldered all of the front and where the foil met the came at the perimeter.  I turned the piece over and similarly soldered the back, trying to produce a “bead” of solder on all joints.  I cleaned the piece under hot soapy water to remove excess flux and solder chunks.  And redid some spots where the solder was not to my liking.
9. Apply Patina, wash and dry
I applied black patina and rewashed. 
I decided not to use the wood frame, since with the addition of the perimeter came it would no longer fit.
  


Hummingbird Leaded Stained Glass Night Light by Martin Prather

Hummingbird Leaded Stained Glass Night Light Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. See Martin Prather's other works of are at http://holidaysandmemories.com

Never be in the dark with this feathered beauty!! This stained glass hummer is about 5-1/2" tall (add 1" for the plug-fixture), and about 2-1/2" wide.  Both lead came and copper foil are used in its construction to nightlight both the bold and delicate features of this bird.  The black patina lead makes for maximum contrast with the glass.  This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.

Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch.

Hummingbird night light is offered in two styles:
  • Manual on/off switch
  • Light Activated on/off switch
Product photo shows hummingbird night light with light activated on/off switch

Dove White Stained Glass Ornament Sun Catcher Love Peace by Martin Prather

Dove of Peace and love Stained Glass Ornament Light Catcher Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. See more Martin Prathers works of art at http://holidaysandmemories.com



Symbolic for bringing peace and love, this lovely dove holds a branch offering to those in need.  
 
It measures approximately 6-3/4" x 8-3/4" and is made of stained glass soldered together using the copper foil method!  A brass chain provides a convenient attach point for hanging in a window or other desired place.  The lead may be left the natural color you see in the pictures, or black patina applied, at your option.  Just let us know at check-out. 
This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.

Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch

 

Double Heart Stained Glass Ornament Light Catcher Love Valentine by Martin Prather

Double Heart Stained Glass Ornament Light Catcher Valentine Handmade in the USA by Martin Prather. See all of Martin's beautiful works of art at holidaysandmemories.com

These double hearts symbolize a union of two loved ones joined together, double hearts measure approximately 2 1/2" x 3 1/2".  Created using the stained glass technique, these exquisite overlayed red and white glass hearts are bound in 3-D.  They were bordered by copper foil, soldered, and then patina was applied for a lasting finish.   The lead may be left a natural color, or black patina applied, at your option.  This stained glass construction is another example of the expert craftsmanship by Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  Their motto:   '.... for lasting beauty'.

Colors and grain in the glass may vary slightly, since glass supplies may differ from batch to batch

 

Monday, August 12, 2013

Martin Prather Stained Glass: Night Lights Treasure Boxes Ornaments Light Catchers

Holidays and Memories is proud to announce a new line of stained glass handmade products by Martin Prather, See Martin's work of arts HERE! Need a custom made product? Feel free to contact us and allow us to give you a price quote!


About Martin: Originally trained in Seattle WA, Martin is the founder of Martin Prather Stained Glass Studios.  He completed his first stained glass project in 1977 after training at a local community college and has worked on projects large and small since then. With his background in engineering, as well as training in art and architecture, he is able to visualize, create, and scale stunning beautiful stained glass projects to meet customers' needs. Martin retired in Riverside California and is now following his dream and passion for the arts.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Celebrating Labor Day as a Family and its history

We have been very busy at Holidays and Memories checking over our recent delivery of products.  Labor Day is coming up, can you believe is it’s almost September.    I was curious about the history of Labor Day so I looked it up.  Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers.  Oregon, was the first state to make it a holiday on February 21, 1887. By the time it became a federal holiday in 1894, thirty states officially celebrated Labor Day. 
 
Our family spends the day together and normally we have a BBQ. 
 
Does anyone have any traditions for Labor Day?