Call for Bead Teachers and Glassblowers

The Unified Glass Arts Day, Canton of Three Hills and West Michigan Glass Arts is seeking instructors and glassblowers for a day-long immersion at a modern glass studio.


Unified Glass Arts Day, Canton of Three Hills (Kalamazoo, Michigan)
West Michigan Glass Arts Center
November 9, 2013
Autocrat: 'Banbharun Siobhan O Neill

A unique event for the Middle Kingdom: a daylong immersion at a modern glass studio!

West Michigan Glass Arts is a non-profit 501(c)3 that regularly schedules these kinds of classes for various groups, and we are partnering with them to offer a special day of glass for the SCA. We have rented the entire studio!

We're offering an entire day of classes and demos in glass arts: beadmaking, glass ornament blowing, sandblasting, fusing studio (make a suncatcher).

This is a smorgasbord style event. There will be a basic site fee ($8?), and then attendees will pay for each project they choose to make. Costs will vary, from free to $30 (for making a handblown glass ornament). Most items will be $10 or less. We're still working out the exact details, but we are looking to only cover costs with the project offerings so we can keep the project fees as low as we can.

In addition to per-project costs, for some of the crafts (ornament, fusing) there will be an additional cost associated with mailing you your projects after the event, because these items require an overnight stay in an annealer. We are working out details and more options may be available as the event draws closer. Stay tuned!

GARB: for this special event, wear natural fibers ONLY. No flowing garments, hair, sleeves, skirts or synthetics around the furnace and other heat/fire sources. Wear linen or cotton shirts, short-sleeved, and natural fiber pants (cotton jeans, linen pants). Shoes are required.

FLOW OF THE EVENT: Most crafts will not require scheduling a specific time, but if you want to blow a glass ornament, work your day around that activity to ensure you get your time. Sandblasting and fusing can be done all day long. Bead track scheduling depends on the teachers and skills they can offer and will be fluid as this event comes together. We expect the bead studio to offer classes or open torch time all day. You can sit and watch glassblowing during the day as folks make their ornaments and other demos take place. Questions of course are welcome! Ask the glassblowers about what you're seeing.

LUNCH will be available: pizza by the slice (vegetarian and meatatarian). Water and pop will be available too.

There are a lot of details about each Glass Art available to participants!

BEADMAKING: TEACHERS are needed for the BEAD classes! Everything from beginner to advanced skills can be taught. We have fourteen minor burners available all day! We need people willing to share their beadmaking knowledge with others! This is a chance for beadworkers to network, try new things, exchange techniques, etc. and a chance for people to learn how to make their very own glass beads! We may or may not have an annealer available, so it's likely you can take the glass beads you make home with you. If an annealer is available, we will mail you your beads after the event.

GLASS ORNAMENT hands-on! Thirty people can register to make a handblown glass ball ornament at this event. You will work with a professional glassblower to make this item. See and feel what it's like to be a glassblower. Your ornament will be annealed and mailed to you in time for Yule. $30 per glass ornament, limited to thirty participants. Could be possible for one person to take more than one slot, but we want everyone who wants to, to get one chance before offering Seconds.

SANDBLASTING is available all day. Pick an item, prepare your design, sandblast it and take it home with you! Dollar store glass items work VERY well for this, the heavier the better. Bring your own or buy from the stock we'll have on hand. Think glass bowl, plate, tankard, pilsner glass...You can put your heraldry and/or name on it! Sandblasted items can be taken home with you. You can make more than one sandblasted project.

FUSING: put pretty pieces of glass on top of a plain piece of glass in a pleasing pattern to make a suncatcher. Your suncatcher will be annealed and mailed to you in time for Yule. Tentative cost: $10 per suncatcher, you can repeat this as often as you like at that per-piece price.

DEMOS: two professional glassblowers will be with us all day: Judy Kosnecki and Michael Fortin. Judy learned at the Toledo glass school and taught Mike. They will help participants make glass ornaments. Judy will also give a talk on glass and depending on other SCA glassblowers who may be attending, there will be additional demos at the furnace and other discussions during the day.

If you've ever tried any of these arts or would like to give it a try, this is the event for you!

Contact: Judith A Kirk