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Wednesday, April 29, 2009


Holey Pineapple Slice, Batman! Am I excited about the up-coming Fruit of the Month Workshop!

We'll be making pineapples - and I have some samples now to show you! I threw these together somewhat quickly so that I could get the photos posted and an email sent out to you; but I'm sure with your own unique style, some time and patience, you will come up with something simply mahvelous!

The smaller round dish (6" diameter) is the primary project for the May Fruit of the Month Workshop. The full size dish (12" L x 6" W) is the "Bonus Dish" for the workshop, but you can choose to do either - or both - of the dishes. If you choose to make both, you will receive a discount of about 15% on your total cost! Cool deal!

I can visualize half a real pineapple, scooped out, with some kind of pineapple fruit salad inside, served on this clever dish. It was a lot of fun to make - and even more fun to see when it came out of the kiln! (Anyone have an idea how to scoop out a real pineapple? We tried a grapefruit knife to get the fruit out from the ends. It works pretty well. Pretty juicy, too!)

Coming up with ideas for making the smaller round dish (6" diameter) was fun. I'm sure you will come up with many more clever ways to design a pineapple slice. This small dish was made by cutting strips of yellow and light amber glass into pineapple wedges, filling in the spaces with a random mix of assorted frit sizes in ivory, yellow, white and amber. The edge was done with coarse frit in amber, yellow, olive and moss. With a live pineapple model at the workshop, you will see colors and structures to inspire your design.

So, have you figured out yet why I just love to do glass fusing? It's not just the feel of the warm, glistening glass that is alluring, but the surprise of how things look when they come out that keeps drawing me to the kiln in the middle of the night to see how things turn out! Take a look at the leaves on the end of the dish. What a surprise! Lots of leaves! These were made with three differenct colors of green.

And every piece will come out differently. I experimented with a technique to add more than one layer of leaves, which makes the dish look much different than I bet you thought it would look, didn't it? This dish has two leaf layers, but I'll bet with a little diligence, we could put three layers in there. On the other hand, maybe two layers is enough. :-)

Saturday, April 25, 2009


A little earlier than I usually get the calendar posted, but I wanted to give all of you a chance to plan ahead!

The Fruit of the Month workshops continue to increase in size, so be sure to sign up for it quickly! An additional day for Pineapples has been added in the event that Wednesday gets too full! Be sure to contact me if you prefer Tuesday, as a minimum of four people for Tuesday will be required to hold the additional class if Wednesday's is not full!

Descriptions for all workshops are below. Just click on the calendar and descriptions to make the image large enough to read. You should also be able to simply print out the calendar and descriptions, each on one page, without any problems this month (hopefully!).

We will again be closed for a week during April, so please plan accordingly!

See you in the studio soon!


Friday, April 24, 2009


Thought you might like to see the project results from the Fusing Basics class held in April. What beautiful vases!

Top: by Angela
Right: by Linda
Left: by Cindy

Vases are just one type of project that you can make in the Fusing Basics class. Come check it out if you haven't taken it already!

The Fusing Basics class is required before you can participate in open studio times, so you won't want to miss out on all the fun!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Got the Blues... Berries, That Is!

What a great time we had at the April Fruit of the Month workshop! Phil put some blues CDs on the stereo and we got busy workin' and swayin' to the Blues-Berries! You can see each of the individual pieces in the photos at the bottom of this post. Photo (left to right) - Front row: Barb, Patty, Rhonda; Middle Row: Lindy (vase), Sherrie, Katie, Lisa, Stacy (vase); Back Row: Minerva, Konnie (vase), Sara, Chris (vase), Dorothy.

We had plenty of "blueberry" dots for everyone (though a little short on the light mauve that many sought out), and once again everyone came up with a totally unique design of their own. It never ceases to amaze me! We even had one piece that was identified as "Not a Blueberry"! (I'll let you guess which one it is!)

This bowl is one that I made for a sample - just a clear circle with blueberry dots on it. I did a contour fuse and slumped the bumpy side down in the mold.

The bottom side of the bowl shows the contours of the dots.

And, oh boy, did we enjoy desserts: a gorgeous blueberry cobbler provided by Chris, and a cheesecake with glazed blueberries on top that I'd made. Too bad I didn't think to take a photo of the desserts. Phil took all the leftovers to work with him the next day - nothing went to "waist" here! And, after all was said and done, Phil went around the studio and ate the "research" blueberries that were left on the small dishes on the tables.

Since everyone had sketched out their designs and picked out a mold for their project, I was able to map out where everything went in the kilns to keep it all sorted and identified. There were 3 or 4 pieces that were constructed entirely of dots - and yet each person had picked a different color background, so they were still identifiably different from one another. They came out beautifully, and I think everyone is thrilled with them!

Here are the photos of the "Before" and "After" blueberry dishes. Just click on the images to see them in a larger format. Enjoy! Try to not get blueberry juice on everything!


Thursday, April 2, 2009


Add ImageHere is the Martin's Glass House Calendar for April 2009! Just click on the image to make it larger and to print it out!

Remember - please call at least one day in advance to make reservations for any open studio times and workshops.

Please note: If you wish to make serving utensils at the April 25th workshop, you must order the utensil parts from me a WEEK prior to the workshop!

Looking forward to seeing you in the studio soon!


Saturday, April 4 – 9 AM to 3 PM
Xi Beta Spring Bazaar, Albany County Fairgrounds

Lots of ideas for gifts and entertaining! Shop for Easter, Mother’s Day, Graduation, Weddings… all coming up soon! Stop by to visit! Free pair of earrings to the first 20 paying customers!

Wednesday, April 8th – 6 to 9 PM

(Photo: Student grapefruit pieces from March workshop.)

Make a new fruit-shaped dish or plate each month—by the end of the year you will have a full set! Come to open studio and you can make as many as you would like. Make a set of twelve and receive a 20% discount on a larger serving bowl to complete your set!

Come test out your glass “gardening” skills— create a bountiful collection of glass fruit dishes more easily than you can by planting seeds! Think of the possibilities… strawberry, watermelon, orange, pineapple (guess where pineapple seeds are in the pineapple!), pumpkins… You will be limited only by your imagination!

FEE: $40 for first-time Fruit of the Month students; $30 for repeat students. Fee includes all instruction, materials, and kiln firing for one bowl. Additional bowls cost $10-$15 each, depending on the glass selected. Your small dish can become a spoon rest, saucer, plate, or bowl.

Saturday, April 11th—1 to 4 PM

Don’t know anything about glass fusing, cutting glass? Or just want to see what it’s all about before you get too involved?

This is an introduction to glass fusing, offered on a monthly basis, designed to provide basic glass fusing processes and techniques.

This class is required before you may attend open studio times to create projects of your own selection.

You will learn about and gain experience in: Safety procedures; Types of glass used, and what happens to glass in the kiln; Fundamental glass cutting techniques and use of tools; The process of layering pieces of glass to achieve a finished project.

FEE: $45 for one 8” square project that can be used as a sun catcher, or formed into a bowl, plate or drape vase.

Wednesday, April 22nd – 6 to 9 PM

I am currently working on some projects using recycled glass to incorporate into a workshop. Watch your email for upcoming announcements with more details!

Saturday, April 25th – 1 to 4 PM

Great deal! Come learn to make dichroic glass cabochons that can be used on dozens of wonderful gifts and functional art pieces! But what are cabochons? Well, you might describe them as flat glass blobs with rounded edges that can be used for decoration or jewelry. But, when turned into wearable and functional art, you’ll be surprised how a blob can become so beautiful!

Below are examples of items you can make out of cabochons. You can learn to make any of these at this workshop!

· Pendants, Earrings
· Belt Buckles
· Bolo Ties
· Bookmarks
· Buttons
· Magnetic Clips
· Remembrance/Candy/Gift Tins
· Utensils: Cake/Bread Knife, Pie Server, Cheese Slicer, Condiment/Butter Spreader, Salad Serving Sets
· Wine Bottle Stoppers
· Zipper Pulls

FEE: $45 for the class includes all instruction, materials, and kiln firing for six cabochons that can be used for any of the above items. Or, you may choose to make two belt buckles, or two handles for serving utensil sets instead of the 6 cabochons. All metal findings and accessories require an extra fee. Orders for utensil parts must be placed one week prior to the workshop to be sure they are available for your use!

Sarah's Sushi Rolls!

As promised, here are photos of Sarah's sushi rolls! Now... just don't ask me to recall what exactly was in each one.

All I know is that they were good, especially since everyone seemed to inhale them!

If you would like more information on the sushi rolls, Sarah does take orders for them. You can contact her by email at .

I have almost a dozen photos so that you can see everything that was served.
If you would like to see any of the photos in a larger format, just click on the image to enlarge it.

Seeing everything displayed on the kitchen island was quite impressive - very artistic! Amazing, actually! Pretty... but, that didn't actually stop anyone from eating everything!

However, since I am not a big fan of "nori" (to me, sea weed is sea weed is sea weed and you can't pull anything over on me on that one), Sarah made a special sushi roll just for me wrapped in chard (which I shared with Phil - it was rather large). I know for a fact that IT was very good! :-)

Phil especially enjoyed the heat of the wasabi... served with fresh ginger.
Make anything hot enough for Phil and he's happy as a three-legged dog getting itches scratched that he can't reach! This is the wasabi with fresh ginger...

The fruit salad was quite yummy - the fresh plums were delicious!

And there were some little tofu and rice rolls that were somewhat sweet - very pleasant to the taste buds.

I contributed a few items to the mix: wasabi peas, wasabi almonds and some homemade almond cookies with pastel sprinkles on top (sorry - no photos of the cookies, and they're all gone now).
I think the other cookies - just plain old white chocolate chip cookies with some dark chocolate chips in them - also were well-received.

And we had a nice display of chopsticks going on, too...
We wish you could have been there, but maybe we'll see you next time!
If you have another idea for a workshop or party - especially now that we know FOOD is a HUGE draw for a crowd - just let me know so that we can get it planned.
Thanks to Deb for suggesting this workshop theme!
Hope you enjoyed the photos!



That's about all I can say about how much fun we had at the sushi roll tasting and sushi platter making day last Saturday! Sarah Norek makes wonderful sushi rolls, which you can investigate further in the next blog.

Above, we all gathered around the dining room table and got to visit while enjoying the sushi rolls. Sarah (sushi chef) is standing in the center back of the photo.

It was a great time - and we'll do it again, especially for all of you who said you wished you could be here! For now, though, just enjoy the photos...

(Left) Deb contemplates her winged, fire-breathing dragon platter and sauce dishes. Don't tell everyone that Phil cut out the dragon on the ring saw for her, though! :-)

A little bit of mixing, matching and cutting out pieces with the mosaic wheel cutters, and soon the dragon had legs and feet!

A bit of stringers and noodles... and the border was applied!

Deb's finished project: 7"x10" platter; two 3"x3" dipping sauce plates.
Transparent light blue; green dragon with a red wing and red-yellow "flames" shooting from his nostrils! Red-yellow frit "scales" on his body. Borders on the 3" square plates tie in with the trim on the ends of the platter.

Sarah (left) and Mary diligently working on their projects.

Unfortunately, I remembered too late to get everyone's photos! Maybe they will come back again next time and I'll be sure to do that! There was one photo I couldn't use because Michelle told me if she looked silly, I didn't have permission. So, since she wasn't smiling...

Sarah's Set: Abstract design on turquoise with vitrigraph, dots and scrap glass. 7"x10" platter; two 3"x3" dipping sauce plates.
Probably won't be too long before these plates are filled with sushi rolls and wasabi! Remember to check out the next blog to see the photos of the sushi rolls!

Mary's Set: Cherry Blossoms, constructed on transparent cherry red with vitrigraph and custom-color frit (made at Martin's Glass House) flowers. Very clever use of the frit!

Results of Mary's project... 8"x8" platter; two 3"x3" dipping sauce plates. Curiously, the design in the dishes was also in the top that Mary wore that day!

The Megan and John Team (back right side of table in photo at the top) designed this abstract design set: two 6" square plates on transparent light blue with various dots, frit, vitrigraph and scrap glass, with accents in the 3"x3" square dipping sauce plates pickingup the colors in the serving plates.


Jill's Set: 7"x10" platter and 3"x3" dipping sauce dishes, white with multi-color stringers and noodles.

In the top photo, Jill's face can't be seen. Clockwise, I think Deb (or Vicki?) was sitting next to John, then Jill was at the middle of the right side of the table between Deb (or Vicki?) and Michelle (in brown top, front right of photo).

Michelle loved everything in the studio, but fell head over heels in love with the blue in this glass, so she opted for the "swirl" design instead of making some other design. But - that's OK! It looks great!

Then she spent the rest of the afternoon sorting out the dots into separate jars by color! Boy... I am so tempted to put that photo of her here so you can see why she probably did that... but, I gave my word...

Patty's Set: 6"x6" and 3"x3" sushi and dipping sauce plates in transparent yellow with a celebration of assorted vitrigraph colors and dots.

Patty (in photo at the top, wearing a black top) is sitting at the left front side of the table next to Guyla (who is wearing the turquoise top).

Guyla's Set: 6"x6" sushi plate, black with Amazon green vitrigraph and dots in red and white; 3"x3" dipping sauce plate in Amazon green with black vitrigraph and dots in red and white. Fun!
By the way - I forgot to mention that I hope that I have everyone's plates photographed in their "upright" positions! Just goes to show you that they look good from any angle!

Vicki's Set: Paw prints everywhere, with inclusions of copper "leaves"! We ran out of light blue transparent dots, so Vicki used bits of stringer for the "toes" - but they came out looking like dots. Very cool!

All in all, I think the sushi rolls must have been pretty inspiring, judging from the creations these students made. We definitely need to do it again!