Chicago School of Glass Art

Chicago's Glass Art Studio


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What in the World is going on with the Glass Industry?!!

As many of you have heard already, Spectrum Glass Company announced a few weeks ago that they will be going out of business.  This was a shock to everyone in the industry, and we will be sorry for the loss of their presence in the stained glass and fusing glass industry.  

In addition, we are sure you have also heard or read about the EPA’s involvement in trying to determine the presence of toxic chemicals leaching into water, air and ground soil near the locations of Bullseye Glass Co. and Uroboros Glass Co., both located in Portland, OR.  Bullseye has been issued a temporary cease and desist order by the Governor of Oregon who seems to be responding to concerned citizen demands for some visible action.  To date, however, no one has been able to determine that Bullseye or Uroboros are the culprits in this issue and both companies have worked fast to add filters and begin making some changes to glass production that would allow them to meet the new standards that the EPA is working to impose.  The issue for us is not should these standards be imposed – for of course, we all want the people who live, work and go to school near these industries to be safe, but how fast the EPA is demanding these small batch glass manufacturing companies who are privately owned, be asked to make these improvements.  Many larger industries have, in the past been given years to become compliant with these standards.  The financial burden it puts on a small company is enough that it could potentially force a company out of business.  This was one of the issues that Spectrum pointed to in its decision to cease production, however there were many others as well.  

Both Bullseye and Uroboros have indicated to us that they plan to be fully compliant with the EPA’s requirements by the end of the summer.  Uroboros has also informed its retailers and distributors that they plan to continue making their System 96 glass and will be taking on the production of many of Spectrum’s System 96 glass colors although the glass is going to look a little different in terms of texture.  Because Spectrum did not inform the distributors or Uroboros of their decision prior to making it public knowledge, they were all caught with normal production and supply levels.  Because people panicked in light of the announcement, there was a run on the glass by people buying as much as they could, so our wholesaler is currently out of stock on most System 96 glass.  In addition, because the Governor of Oregon has issued the cease and desist letter to Bullseye, we will be in short supply of their glass through the end of the summer as well.

FOR OUR FUSING CUSTOMERS AND STUDENTS, THERE IS LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL!!

When Spectrum made their announcement they also said they would be producing glass for the next 60 days and any glass we are able to get we will try to get for customers, however we will not be bulk buying this glass.  If you need something, call or stop by and we will see

From Our Family to Yours

From Our Family to Yours

if its in stock or if we can get some.  Wissmach and Uroboros are two companies that produce a 96 COE glass as well as regular stained glass.  We have already added both to our stock and we are confident of their ability to carry us through the summer until Uroboros can get the Spectrum glass up and running.  You can help us by pre-ordering anything you think you are going to need over the summer.  

Wissmach and Uroboros also make 90 COE glass so we will continue carrying them as well.  Again, pre-orders are helpful.

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR OUR STAINED GLASS STUDENTS AND CUSTOMERS?

It means you will need to consider using some of the the other beautiful stained glass manufactured by other companies.  We carry glass from Kokomo Opalescent Glass Co., Wissmach Glass Co., Armstrong Glass, Uroboros, Bullseye, Youghigeny, Pilkington, Oceana, Fremont, St. Just, Chroma, VanGogh, Duncan, and St. Gobain.  While it is a loss to our industry to have Spectrum close its doors, they are relative new comers to the stained glass industry and there are many other companies to choose from to allow you to make beautiful windows, doors, transoms, boxes, and lamps.  

WHAT ELSE CAN YOU DO?

We think it is important to let our political representatives know that Glass Art is an important medium in the art world, and as such should be regulated in such a way as to allow those who do the art to have access to the glass and other things needed to make their art, and at the same time to be good neighbors and protect the environment as much as possible without destroying the industry.  There are ways to do this, but as with all things, it costs money.  At Suevel Studios, we will be letting our representatives know that we agree with the efforts to keep the industry clean, but we feel they also need to avoid putting undue burdens on small batch, family owned companies, and instead give them a reasonable amount of time to apply the necessary changes, just as has been done in the past for multi-billion dollar corporations. If you feel so inclined, adding your voice to the message can only help!

 


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May Classes still have openings!

Looking for something fun to do next month?  All our classes still have openings.  Daytime, Evening and Weekend.  Check out the calendar for dates and times.  Come join the fun – come back to glass!

Drop Mold Vase - Artist: Sharon Dolezal Advanced Fusing Class

Drop Mold Vase –
Artist: Sharon Dolezal
Advanced Fusing Class

Copper Foil Panel Artist: Suzanne Comella Advanced Stained Glass

Copper Foil Panel
Artist: Suzanne Comella
Advanced Stained Glass

coffee table 2

 

 

 

 

 

Sunburst Tabletop
Artist: Markay Suevel
Instructor: Advanced Mosaic

Lake Forest Install

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I know several of my regulars have been watching this project unfold in our studio and they wanted to see the final project in place; so, here you go. For everyone else, the brief Reader’s Digest description and for those of you that know me that’s an oxymoron, is the homeowner came to Suevel Studios with the center round stained glass window wanting to somehow highlight the window in their sunroom. Doesn’t sound too hard until you understand that the homeowner’s great grandparent originally made the round window, which was coming apart and has hand painting on the glass that was not fired onto the glass. During the cleaning process special care had to be taken as to not remove the old paint. Once the cleaning and repair work was completed we took the round window and created a very simple design producing the now large rectangle window. Subsequently when we finished the main window we fashioned the two accent corner windows to compliment the main window. And there you have it finished and installed.

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Celia’s Sidelight

Celia finished her sidelight!  Celia is one of our regulars and she is a very talented woman doing stained glass, mosaics, fusing and slumping.  Celia always brings her wonderful smile and happy personality and If you’re lucky enough you get to even try some of her wonderful mole sauce. Celia as always you have done a wonderful job with your window, it will look beautiful in your home.

 

Celia's Sidelight

Celia’s Sidelight


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Abstract Stained Glass Panel

Well the celebrations have started Suzanne is back from her injury and is working on her Abstract Stained Glass Panel.  Welcome back Suzanne you have been missed! This picture does not do the panel justice, all of you should see this up close the colors are fantastic. Cant wait to see it complete!

Suzanne's Stained Glass Panel

Suzanne’s Stained Glass Panel


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An Old Trick

Here is an old trick, this is nothing new, but it is a nice review for those of you starting out with stained glass and the copper foil technique.  Years ago I found this technique hard to believe; so, I tried this and to my pleasant surprise it really works.  When you are finishing up your panel and have decided to put a copper patina on your solder lines give this a try.

Orvus

Orvus

 

Before anything happens make sure that you have neutralized the patina and given your entire panel a good washing.  We like to neutralize the flux and then wash our panels in Orvus soap.  The reason for the Orvus is because Orvus is sodium lauryl sulfate. It is 100% biodegradable and does not contain any phosphates. Sodium lauryl sulfate is a “surfactant” – it removes residues that are oily. What it comes down to in simple terms (and the aspect that concerns us most) is that it is a “wetting agent.”  Orvus removes the surface tension and allows the water to do the cleaning.

 

Once that is done dry your panel with some clean rags or towels.  Now comes the strange part. Take a good polish like Liva for stained glass and put it on both side of your panel just like you would when you wax your car.  When the Liva has dried and come to a light haze all over the panel, buff all of it off with a clean rag turning the rag on a regular basis.

Liva

Liva and Novacan Super Bright

 

You are now ready to put on your Novacan Super Bright Copper Patina.  Pour some patina into a separate dish; we use a small dish like you would for Grandma’s custard.  Take a brush, or sponge and carefully go over all your solder lines being careful to not go on the outside copper framing.  When you are all done rinse your panel with water one more time then give it another Liva polishing and voilá a beautiful copper patina on your stained glass panel.

 

Apply

Applying the Patina

Try it, you’ll be amazed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finished

Finished Patina


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Finishing Off Intro Classes

We are finishing off all those Intro classes and switching over to all Beginning Classes starting the end of the month.  This will allow us to focus on the new Beginning classes, Church Work and starting some of our own creative work.  Don’t forget something big is coming soon!

Final Intro Classes

Final Intro Classes


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Celia’s Lamp

A fun thing about the studio is you get to meet wonderful people, artists and make new friends. This is our friend Celia and she is one of those very talented glass artists. Celia has been working hard for some time now on putting together a couple of lamps. The lamps are a combination of stained glass and mosaics. Celia you did a great job!

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