When I was nineteen years old I really had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, no goals or a career path, a typical nineteen year old. I was three years into a relationship and my partner at the time kept pushing me to find a hobby or a skill that I liked. At the time I was really annoyed that he was pushing me to do something other than watch MTV. So I tried a variety of different things from sports, to painting, to carpentry but none of those were interesting to me at all. One hobby that I tried was stained glass, and I found I had a great natural skill working with it. My first project was ambitious and it was a Tiffany Style lamp. It turned out beautiful and I still have the lamp today!
My stained glass passion and skills led to me making many more projects and eventually the stained glass work was incorporated in the antique store I owned in the mid to late 90's. I used to do custom designed pieces for people; most of my clients were in New York. When I left my hometown in 2000, I left my portfolio of work behind, all my patterns, tools and glass. In 2001, I worked for a small stained glass design studio called Anderson Stained Glass in 2001. I learned how to work in lead and acquired a vast amount of knowledge and improved my skills in stained glass. Since 2001, I have not worked or designed anything pertaining to stained glass but my passion for it has always been in my mind. I was going to work with Paul's mom, Ruth and our friend Jody back in Cambridge since they are both also stained glass artists but I moved to San Francisco.
Moving to San Francisco opened up a ton of doors for Paul and I and one of the doors that really is wide open and hitting me in the face is stained glass. Our apartment is right across the street from a huge stained glass store! For those that don’t know much about stained glass, stained glass stores are very rare and usually few and far between. So this was a sign that I needed to start working in stained glass again.
Above: My stained glass workshop!
I purchased all the tools, an old table and a great wire saw, and I set up a workstation on our large patio deck. The workshop is all set up and complete and I have started my first project. My first project is related to another passion of mine, Joan Crawford. I know,I know, you are all rolling your eyes but this window is going to be beautiful and one of a kind. Check out the pattern I drew, you can see the window in progress! The pattern is Joan Crawford from her 1932 movie, "Letty Lynton," one of her most popular looks. I am hoping to have the window complete by April 1st. Wish me luck!
Above: The pattern for the stained glass window
I am working on.