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Friday, November 21, 2014

Gallery Glass Wrap Up for Fall Holidays

Let's take a look at the Thanksgiving designs. Thanksgiving has a shorter decorating "window" because it is sandwiched between Halloween and Christmas, but it certainly deserves our time and attention. I usually add the "leaves" decorations in with the Thanksgiving motifs because they coordinate color-wise and because it gives more flexibility to the projects.

10" round version of Autumn Leaves.
Having trouble locating a 10" blank? Check the Party store. They have large plain plastic plates that have a flat surface with a slightly curved edge. These inexpensive surfaces are adaptable to the 10" round designs, although you may have to shrink them down a little.
Elegant Autumn Pumpkin with Leaves - 10" Round

Fall decorations get more exciting as the leaves begin to fall in the back yard. Decorations on the windows need to be vibrant or they won't compete with the splashes of color drifting past. This suncatcher is bound to get the attention of anyone who sees it. The pumpkin doesn't have a face, so it can stay in play all the way to Thanksgiving.

Autumn Suncatchers "light up" Clear Vases

Gallery Glass allows you to "go wild" with your seasonal decor because they are REMOVABLE. There is no messy adhesive and they stay flexible for many years to come. It's a very easy process. Lead and paint piles of brightly colored leaves on 8"x10" reusable blanks (from Plaid), let dry--then peel and stick to windows, mirrors and other smooth surfaces. When the holiday is over, peel the leaves off the surfaces, put them back on a reusable sheet and store them in a cool flat place inside food storage bags.

Big, Bold and Beautiful Sunflower on 10" Round
I love florals that leave no doubt about what kind of flower you're trying to depict. Who doesn't enjoy the cheerful coloring and positive primary colors of Autumn Sunflowers? I wish I had a hundred of them in my back yard, but will be satisfied to hang this 10" beveled piece in the window. It's almost as good as the real thing. The petals are plain, with very simple shading, but the center gets a little more drama from the addition of FolkArt Extreme Glitter polka dots of Black and Gold applied first. Then the Gallery Glass Black Onyx and Cocoa Brown are swirled around and through the glitter dots to disperse. The result is a little heavier center with subtle highlights--fantastic!

Pilgrim and Indian - 6"x9" Ovals
I put these up last because I have never been happy with the faces of the Pilgrim and the Indian. However, there certainly is a place for them in our Thanksgiving display. The same holds true of the ship. It's especially good to put them up if you have small children visiting the house, who may not yet know the story of the first Thanksgiving. Follow the directions on the Message Board for printing out the designs and enlarge them to fit your situation. If you don't have oval blanks, you can make all three in a smaller size and use them as suncatchers.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Traditional Fall Gallery Glass Designs

Bountiful Horn of Plenty - 12" Circle
The weather is getting cooler and harvest is in progress all around us. Roadside Stands and Farmers' Markets are brimming with beautiful fruits and vegetables. It not only makes me hungry, but it reminds me of how much we have to be thankful for. This elaborate cornucopia offers an opportunity to use Extreme Glitter by Plaid to differentiate between the horn and the plenty. It makes it a little more opaque and adds a bit of holiday glitz at the same time. I applied Hologram Glitter in dots and swirled the amber paint through it, then blended and combed with a nutpick--an easy technique that requires little time.

I love this design so much because-- first of all, it's food and painting food is the next best thing to eating it. And secondly because it is a big, bold, beautiful Fall/Thanksgiving decoration that bridges into Christmas beautifully. 

What's Thanksgiving without a Turkey?
It's hard to find a design that isn't too juvenile, but a realistic turkey isn't very attractive as a stained glass motif, so we finally settled on this one. He isn't a cartoon, but his multi-colored feathers have a whimsical quality. He is particularly effective surrounded by Indian corn, cornucopias and scarecrows. You can use an old photo frame and paint him on the glass, or you can just lead the design onto a leading blank and peel him off to go on the window. I really prefer Plaid's 8"x10" styrene blank because of the ease of storing him for the next year. This is a particularly good design for a kid's group. They will create colors of feathers you never dreamed of.

Lilies for Fall Color
The season is changing and it's time to take down the window decorations and cozy up to an earthy color palette. These lilies bloom with Fall colors and make a welcome addition to any room. 
This is a great time of year for Paintin' Parties. We hosted one this month that featured this very design.

This project will probably take about one hour to complete in a classroom setting, so we always offer multiple projects so that each painter can work at their own speed. Pacing is important--the challenge is to satisfy the experienced painters, without frustrating the beginners.

Autumn Leaves - 12" and 10" Rounds
Autumn leaves are falling! Why not celebrate the coming of Fall with a special suncatcher. This 12"
project offers the opportunity to create some new colors by blending the pure color with my favorite neutral color--Hologram Shimmer. It gives the hues a completely different look and softens them just enough to make it a super easy project for a beginner. Apply the pure color in dots in the section, then swirl the Hologram Glitter paint through the dots and use the combing tool from the tool set to thoroughly blend the two colors together, making a new, lighter sparkly color.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Terrifying Trio - on 6"x9" oval blanks

Maybe I should call them the Terrific Trio. They are so cute it makes you want to invite them in for a Trick or Treat snack. They are perfect for households with small children who might be frightened by really scary faces. Hang them in the front window and turn off the lights when the little neighborhood goblins start up the sidewalk. The faces will "glow" brightly, thanks to the use of Glow in the Dark Mod Podge for the complexions of Frankie and the Witch.

The only problem is--the 6"x9" blanks are discontinued. This does not put them out of the running as Halloween projects. When you are at the party store buying costume accessories and decorations, pick up some of the clear plastic plates in the large size. Enlarge the designs following the directions on the Message Board on the right side of the home page and create the designs on the plates. I prefer the scooped ones without the band around the side because it gives you more room for the designs. Then melt a hole in the top with a heated paper clip, ice pick or wood burning tool, and hang them with a orange ribbon or fishing line. You can also make the designs a little smaller as "Clings" and use them to decorate the windows on the front porch. They will be the envy of the neighborhood Mom's group!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Haunted House - created with Gallery Glass - 24"x36" Poster Frame

Last year I created this display for the Plaid Lobby. You still have some time to make it, if you are quick! I got the idea from a illustration but did some serious altering to make it suitable for leading and paint. Look closely at the original drawing. I enlarged the design many times on the copier to fit the poster frame and then altered the lines of the design as I leaded with a Tape Tip. Even before I painted it, I made some corrections to the "neighboring houses" that appeared in the lower corners. I leaded a bush to fill in the space. I also cleaned up some of the confusion in the sky among the branches--pulling some of them up and adding new lines that made more sense.
The problems I encountered during the painting phase were new challenges for me-- because I don't ever remember painting something that needed to look OLD! I'm not smart enough to "age" the project as I painted it, so I cheated. I painted it with normal colors, then I "distressed" it with Copper Metallic. Here is a picture of it before the distressing. As a co-worker pointed out--"it's too pretty, it makes you want to live there!" That's not a particularly desirable comment to have made about a Haunted House. So I began working to make it more ominous. I first took Copper Metallic and topically applied it to the porch railings in a random "woodgrain" pattern. Then, I decided that the concrete porch looked too clean, so I applied the CM in lines to look like boards. Then the door looked much too clean, so I streaked it on the door. Then I realized that the Copper Sparkle on the turret and the fishscale shingles was much too bright, so they were next. That only left the sides of the house and --you guessed it, CM, why not? Then the co-worker said that we needed at least one bat--so I added it to the less cluttered sky area.
I think that it looks appropriately scary. But don't let it SCARE you away from the project. You can do it. Let me know if you figure out how to do the distressing--as you go. I want to share your ideas with our readers, even though I'm sure that I don't want to attempt this subject again. It frightens me to think about it!

Now, don't you dare write in and tell me you liked it better BEFORE I distressed it!

FolkArt Extreme Glitter Supplies: 2797 Extreme Glitter Black, 2791 Extreme Glitter Purple, 2792 Extreme Glitter Red, 2794 Extreme Glitter Emerald, (red and green were mixed equally together to make a brown Extreme Glitter for the tree.
Gallery Glass Supplies: 16004 Sunny Yellow, 16005 Orange Poppy, 16003 Cameo Ivory, 16096 Celedon Green, 16459 Italian Sage, 17054 Copper Metallic (discontinued), 16422 Copper Sparkle, 16421 Silver Sparkle (discontinued), 16094 Champagne, 16024 Ivy Green, 16076 Black Liquid Leading.
Sorry, I didn't color key the pattern, but this is basically what I did. The tree is all Extreme Glitter. I mixed the Red and Emerald together to get a brown because EG doesn't come in brown. Then alternated between the Black and "Brown" on the trunk. The grooves were done with Purple.
The railings are Cameo Ivory. The walls are Celedon Green and the door is Italian Sage. The porch floor is Silver Sparkle. The fishscale shingles and turret are Copper Sparkle and the roof is Copper Metallic. Windows are Sunny Yellow and Orange Poppy. Distressing is Copper Metallic and the background is Champagne. (Charcoal might have been a better choice for sky.)
In case you're wondering about the "green" pattern. The styrene still had the green plastic on the back.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Eve's Spooky (and fabulous) Halloween Clings


You were introduced to Eve's amazing talent in August with "Eve Goes Pro with Gallery Glass" (see below). The post explains how she had done a window for a neighbor that included the residence number. We corresponded by email and I learned that she had a "Clings" board on Pinterest, which she shared with me. Of course, I knew that you, our wonderful readers, would enjoy seeing more of her awesome creativity in the blog, so I asked her to share some of her original artwork with us --in time for Halloween! I also invited Eve to share the back story of how she got into Gallery Glass, etc. Here are her words and some of her fabulous creations.
"To answer your question about how I started making clings, it all began back in 2004/2005  That summer, it was UNUSUALLY hot, so hot in fact that we were trying to block as much sunlight as possible from coming into the condo. We were issued a warning citation for covering our windows with unapproved colored material and I was getting desperate to figure out a way to customize some sort of window covering that contained the 3 approved HOA colors (tan, mauve & powder blue). One day, I happened to see a Palladian window in the same complex as ours that looked like stained glass and it was fabricated with the approved colors mandated by our HOA. I knocked on the door to inquire about the window & the woman who answered the door basically introduced me to the whole Gallery Glass world!"

"Back then I was NOT a craft person what-so-ever! I was extremely intimidated about attempting to fabricate anything. But the summer subsided and I still wanted to try my hand at making Clings. I first tried the pre-leaded Redi-Lead shapes (the roses and flowers) but after finishing one, I was dissatisfied with how the design looked. So, I got a little braver and began practicing making my own leading. I followed the suggestion of taking a plain piece of ruled paper and placing it under a leading blank. After practicing the lead lines and making several mediocre clings, I mastered the technique of holding my hand above the surface and "dropping the leading".

"At first, I made the clings for friends and family.  They loved them so much that they convinced me to try & sell them. My first foray into selling my Clings was at our local swap meet. I focused on making holiday designs and I sold all the inventory, but in retrospect I completely undersold myself and practically gave them away! I guess that is typical for a budding "artist"- it seems like we are always the last one to see the worth of our craft." 

"A good friend of mine suggested Craig's List and I got started!! I did receive a decent response to my ad.  I plan to have a garage sale in a few weeks when the heat dies down, so I'm furiously working on fabricating holiday-themed clings to display and sell."
"I am estimating that my Entire cling catalog has in excess of 150+ Cling designs. I have them categorized in my PC and titled in special main folders such as: Holidays, People, Places, Animals, Floral, Creatures and Miscellaneous (these are usually geometric patterns or symbols --example: the universal Japanese symbol that expresses friendship). Then I have separate sub-folders for each specific category (Animals would have separate sub-folders such as dog cat, birds, Of the Ocean, etc.) I am so jazzed that I devised this organized photo cling cataloging literally on the first day I completed my very first cling! The ability to share with you specific images as they fit a particular need or season is going to be so easy. It will give me the ability to share my clings as I need them--pertaining to time frames, seasons, etc."
I'm so glad that Eve was generous enough to share her talented creations with us. If you click on the attachment, you can print out the pattern and have some of these whimsical Clings for your seasonal decorations. Become inspired by Eve's story--remember, she wasn't even crafty--but she systematically set out to learn a new skill. Maybe you have a family member who NEEDS a new interest. Buy them some leading and the basic colors of Gallery Glass--and see what happens. They could become as passionate about Clings as our Eve! You never know!