|Close up of Laburnum shade|
Winter is our time of rest from the garden, and of course, stained glass takes center stage just as soon as Christmas is over. We did finally get the Pony Wisteria shade done a few days ago. This one was started last winter, so it's about time, don't you think?
I had about seven sheets of beautiful blue Youghiogheny wisteria glass to choose from and though the pieces are so very tiny, it is nerve-wracking and exhilarating all at once to get the best blend of color possible. I suppose it would be helpful if I'd ever seen a real wisteria up close and personal, but I have not. I have to admit the same thing about the Laburnum shade which we had completed last winter, too; once again, I have never seen the actual flower so all I can do is hope it turned out looking like a 'real' laburnum.
|1986 pieces of yellow, green, brown and blue glass|
|Glass illuminated by light bulb from underneath. Notice the difference in color from sunlight to the warm light bulb.|
Before we could put the glass on the fiberglass form for soldering, Carl had to fix a problem with the crown that the glass was to be soldered to. As you can see from the picture below, the crown was crooked and needed straightening. Carl had to put it in the lathe to straighten it.
|Chucked up in the lathe and ready to spin.|
|After a bit of time, he had it done.|
The soldering process is a long-drawn out one, around twenty hours more or less. Carl generally does the soldering on all of our shades, though both Joel and I do solder occasionally. Carl doesn't like to solder in the house due to the fumes generated, so he opted to solder outside in his big, unheated shop. In the middle of winter! He wears appropriate fume respirators while he works, but he could only solder for a few hours before the cold temperatures overtook him. He did have a heat lamp overhead, but it was cold during that time period and soldering is a really sedentary activity. Anytime you sit still in twenty degree temperatures (or less) the cold starts to get to you. When he'd finally decided he couldn't take the cold anymore, he'd come in the house shivering and sit wrapped in a blanket, trying to defrost.
While Carl was soldering the Wisteria, I was at work on the next shade, the 20" Daffodil. (More on that to come!)
As soon as the soldering on the outside was done, Carl brought the shade into the dining room and we took a heat gun and carefully heated up the glass until the beeswax melted and the shade came free from the form. This is a really exciting time for us, the Moment of Truth. We never can wait until the shade is cleaned up before we have to cram a light bulb in the bottom somehow and see how it turned out.
|Still all covered in soldering paste and beeswax with the Magic Marker pattern numbers visible|
In the pictures above, the lamp was actually upside down on the table with a light bulb sitting on top, but I rotated the pictures to have the lamp appear to be right side up. I guess I forgot to mention why I made the background glass orange...this is supposed to mimic a sunset.
The next step was to solder the inside of the lamp which meant Carl had to go back out in the cold for another few nights after work to finish the process. Poor guy!
The last two pictures illustrate the differences in light bulbs and camera settings. There is a big difference in the colors depending on what type of light is used.
After the soldering was complete, we could put the new shade on the base and take some more pictures. We haven't gotten a really good picture of it yet as we're having some trouble finding 'the' right bulb to illuminate the shade. The shade is tiny, only 10", and the light bulbs we had here wouldn't fit so we had to search out some smaller ones. Unfortunately, we could only find the smaller bulbs in warm tones, so we're still on the prowl for possible LED lights in the 5000K range, which would be daylight.
|Here is the lamp lit with some really hot bulbs, we hope to find lower wattages in the daylight range soon.|
Here's a sneak preview of that project:
|This shade just says SPRING to me!|
And what else have I been doing when I'm not walking with Leslie, tossing weights around and doing stained glass?
|Queen of the Hill?|
But, as I said earlier, I'm weird.