My husband Eric often collaborates with me on projects. After he heard my thoughts, he created a 6-paneled cardboard pattern for the lamp. It would highlight the bear on one side, the moose on another, something different on another, and then three "background only' sides. Once he created the cardboard pattern, the rest just fell together. Here we go ..
Pictured in the upper right is the original moose stained glass .. And on the lower left is the bear. The moose and bear windows were designed by Dawn Lee Thompson. Next to them are my computer renditions of the panels. The larger images are the completed bear and moose panels in the sunlight. Now onto the process of creating the six panels ..
I cut the glass for three panels at a time. Here I've traced all the red.
And I've now cut out the red and traced the black.
Red and black and yellow are cut and now I'm cutting the amber.
Since I've collected a pile of cut glass I'm now bringing each one to the electric grinder to smooth out the edges. This makes the pieces safe for handling and helps the copper foil to adhere.
Moving onto the greens .. Here are some of my tools. The blue is the "running pliers" which snap straight scores. The purple is the "oil filled pistol grip glass cutter" which creates the scores. And the black are the "groziers" which nip off smaller areas of glass.
Tracing some of the blue water.
I'm working on the moose panel here. I've applied 7/32" copper foil to the edges of each piece of glass within the panel. Note the metal "fence" around it. This keeps the glass in place while I work. Here I'm using a "fid" or flat plastic wand to burnish the foil onto the glass.
Now the moose is fully foiled.
Next I'm "tack soldering" the glass pieces together. Before I solder, I brush on "liquid flux" which is a catalyst which enables the solder to flow freely. I'm using small dots of solder mainly at the intersections of the glass, just to lock them together.
After the panel is tack soldered, I've removed the "fence" and I slid it off the "cartoon" or paper pattern.
Two steps have been completed here. I fully soldered the front of the moose, installed a thin metal frame around the perimeter, then I fully soldered the back.
After cleaning the flux and excess solder off of the panel, I'm now applying the black patina. This is a chemical which instantly turns the solder black. A thorough cleaning follows here as well.
And now onto the bear already in progress. Its been tack soldered and slid off the cartoon.
Here I'm soldering the frame to the panel.
Now the bear panel is also finished.
Here it is in the sunlight. The beauty of stained glass is how different it looks in different lighting conditions.
Cutting more glass for the remaining panels. Working on the purple mountains here. Note that I'm using a metallic color Sharpie to mark the dark glass so it can be seen.
Purples and whites are cut.
A bunch of blues ready for the grinder. I'm cutting three identical pieces at a time.
Back to the grinder ..
Here are three "background" panels in various stages. The first one has been fully soldered and famed, the second one has just been foiled, and the third has just been cut.
More glass cut ..
Here's the funky tree in the process of being foiled.
Now the lamp is taking shape. Here are four completed panels laying flat but not in their proper sequence.
Here I'm using a Dremel tool to engrave my name, the date, and "Birch Glen Cabin" into the lamp.
Moving along well. Here I'm applying the patina to one of the "background" panels.
Eric custom made a wooden template on which to solder the six panels together. We positioned the panels on the template and then taped them securely together using stretchy black electrical tape.
Now it looks like a lamp!
These panels have some weight to them. To make sure they stay in place securely through the years, I've run a line of wire along the top and bottom edge as shown. The wire is soldered in place.
Here's the lamp in the wooden template, clamped in place, ready to be soldered.
A view after the reinforcement wire had been soldered to the top and bottom edges.
Inside view of the lamp.
After the six panels were fully soldered together and cleaned, I applied the black patina to the newly soldered areas.
Here is a series of photos of each side of the lamp ..
The funky tree that will be facing the wall!
Eric created a crown of steel and rivets at the top which included three lengths of brass rebar that extend down the sides of the panels. Very sturdy!
For a special touch, I purchased a pine cone final for the top.
It's just below the bear stained glass window.
Here's a view of the room featuring both of the inspiration pieces, the moose and bear stained glass window, with the new matching lamp on the corner table below. Special thanks to my wonderful husband for his help on this project, and to Bob for making us the beautiful Birch tree base! We will enjoy this lamp for many years to come.
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