Here's my story.........
My life changed in 2010 when, at the request of my daughter, we attended a beginner glass bead making class at Bavin Glassworks in BC for her 16th birthday. I really did not expect this art form to take over my world, but since that day seven years ago now, so much has happened. Of course with a new hobby comes new friends that are like minded and share the same interests. Some of these ladies have now become my best friends and I am so grateful to have them in my life!
After two years of renting studio time in the Tiffany House public studio here in Calgary, my family and I decided it was time to build a studio at home. I am now blessed to have a two torch studio complete with a ventilation system, kiln, and all the glass, tools and toys required to make glass beads at home. Incredible! After the studio was up and running at home it came about that I could share my studio with other lampwork friends who don't have a studio. Then, that evolved into realizing I could even go so far as to offer small classes for one-four people here at my home studio to those who wish to try lamp working and learn the basics. Wow, what a journey it has been! Share, rent and teach!
In April of 2013, after much talk and "we should", the first The Molten Crew club meeting took place. I am thrilled to have organized what has become a thriving and ever growing lampwork bead club here in Calgary.
Along the way I learned about Beads of Courage. It is a non profit charity that is committed to transforming the treatment experience for children and families coping with serious illnesses. Through the Beads of Courage Program, children tell their story as they receive colourful glass beads to commemorate milestones along their treatment path. I now donate beads to this charity. In April 2014, my glass "owl" was the featured bead at the 2014 gala fundraiser event. What an honour!!
In August 2013 I approached Bavin Glassworks in Invermere BC to see if I might be able to supply some of my glass work there and possibly become a consignment artist to them. They said yes and I am so excited and proud to now have my art work in their glass shop. My glass beads can also be found here in Calgary at Naughty Nelly Artisans & Imports in the NW. This little shop is overflowing with character and charm; you should really check it out! Of course I can also be contacted directly if you are interested in purchasing a glass treasure.
Beginning in April 2016, my glass beads are also available at Galleria Arts & Crafts in Inglewood, Calgary. Check out this store for an amazing selection of handmade arts and crafts from a variety of artists.
This is such an amazing art form to learn. I encourage anyone who would like to try something truly beautiful for the soul to give it a try. There is nothing more peaceful and relaxing to me. It involves melting glass rods at a torch to a molten buttery state and then using balance and gravity with your mandrel to form, shape and create your glass bead. It is absolute wow!