Category Archives: Glass Goodies

New website launching!

my new website, if you could check it out and pass on some feedback, pretty please ūüôā (there is lots more work to do)

MARCATO DESIGNS

Hi my friends, I have done the hard yards on my new website and below is the link for you to have a browse.
For those that don’t know, I am looking at another web-building site that gives me everything I want, shopping cart included for a better price than my current one.

So I wasn’t wasting time for nothing, I have uploaded only 3 items per category, which I feel is enough to get people started on what will be.  I’m sure there are more categories to be included later, but time will work on that.

It is quite completely different for the one I have now, so if you’ve seen that one, be prepared, this is not the same, except for the colour scheme. Pink, of course.

The header is rather plain at the moment with just my logo, I will be working on that. I won’t say anything…

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WEBSITE RELAUNCH!!!!

Love it!!
New look, new pages, lots of fab pieces to check out!
Share with your friends! ūüėÄ

MARCATO DESIGNS

Well, after nearly two weeks of work (interrupted of course by other seemingly important this like family and Art Trails) I have finally finished my website.
It has had a total overall: new pages, new products and a new look.
The only thing I haven’t put on it is a shopping cart. I realise that may be shooting myself in the foot, but until I find the funds to get a proper site done up or find a better way to incorporate shipping into it, it will have to wait.
For any sales and enquiries a simple email is all it takes and I can arrange the best price for you (and invoice via PayPal).

Pease wander across and have a look, I’d really appreciate any feedback you can give me (aside from any typos I’m sure I’ve missed) as it can only help in the long run and don’t…

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New glass Experiments

We’ve all seen those cute little cheese boards (or whatever they are) made from melted (slumped) bottles.
Here’s one of mine:

I wanted to do a few more glass items but not having much Dichroic aside from black and clear, I decided to smash a few bottles and see how that worked.
Bottle are hard to break.  Unless of course you drop them on concrete, but I needed to minimise the mess and little nasty bits with kids and dog wandering around.

So with safety glasses on and hammer at the ready I put a board in the laundry tub, covered it with paper and break the bottles.  Even with a board, the glass still bounced a bit and took about 6 hits before it succumbed to the pressure.

last remnants of a bottle

I now have 2 green wine bottles, 1 brown beer bottle and a clear juice bottle broken and in their storage boxes.

I have tried several pieces of each glass to see how they melt and if multiple pieces will join nicely.

The only difference between these and my Dichroic is that this stuff smokes like crazy and the fumes are really bad.  Dichroic only smokes a little bit and the fumes are not so toxic.
Two windows wide open allows for good ventilation – providing the wind is blowing the right way.
A cold night is not the time to have glass cooking in the kiln.
A sunny day is definitely preferrable.


I have a brown piece, a green one I think would be perfect as a guitar Wrapture and there is a clear one with branches in the kiln cooling.
The glass goes into the kiln, reaching 800C then cooking for 30 mins.  This is a one hour process.  The glass is then left for at least 8 hours to cool and anneal properly.  Although I did drop a piece on the floor and it still breaks like normal glass. Oops.

I would like to open the kiln at the 800C mark and stamp the glass while it is still red-hot and see how it cools.  Hence my mention of gardening gloves.  This will be something I try next time.

Here is the first piece of beer glass I made as a necklace.
All I want now is some of that pretty blue glass, or yellow…. wonder if the people at the tip will let me take it out¬†of the recycling bins..

Keep smiling ūüôā
Jennifer

A new business plan

Ok, so I have written about new directions and so forth at other times and while this is similar, it is somewhat different.

I have not changed my mind about:
What I want to do.
What I want to make,
Or how I want to make it.

While I was in clean up mode the other day, there were lots of singular bits of paper floating around and one of them had the heading (in bold and fancy script of course) of: Where am I going?

As I read that I have a little chuckle¬†– I mean, I could be going just about anywhere couldn’t I?¬†¬† It says nothing about business of beading in the title, ¬†so¬†reading¬†it as is¬†might¬†not make sense.¬† It did at the time, and that’s all that matters.¬† It was what I was thinking.. where was I going??

Reading further down the list – and it is a very simple list – I had more chuckles about what choices¬†I have made in¬†the last 6 months or so and how¬†I have not really stuck to this plan.¬†¬† Hmm, did I get all excited, write it¬†and then just stuff it in a drawer..?¬† Maybe, sort of… probably.¬† Well not altogether forgotten about it.¬† Just not had it clearly on display where it was readily visible to keep me on track.¬† So while I have adhered to some things, others have been changed or altered and, well, they’re just not same anymore.

So I shall re write Рkeeping the bold and fancy script, coz even at 35+, we still like to make documents look pretty Рand it shall be stuck on the side of the wall where I can see it.  Everyday.  And make a more concerted effort to work it through. Yeah, duh!

As a business, one needs to evolve to ensure survival.  I am now at that point where I know, (much better now) what direction I am heading and what I want to make, I can put it out there and change things as needed, moving forward.  The rest, as they say, will fall into place.

Meanwhile, all these new ideas will need a few experiments to be done first to see if they will work – heat proof gloves will be a first on the list of things to buy (gardening gloves will probably suffice though.¬† Gardening gloves + beading… really?¬† Yes, and you’ll hear about that soon enough).¬† If these great ideas ^^ don’t work, it wont be the end of the world, it is just but a small part of my bigger picture. No dramas.

The next few blogs will no doubt shed some light into my epiphany, so keep an eye out for the exciting crafty pieces that will be emerging.
I am excited about trying these things out and moving forward.  I hope you can come along for the ride and enjoy it with me.

Keep smiling ūüôā
Jennifer

I think I need to clean…

My creative space is always a work in progress and until I find just the right work tables that will fit my space easily then it will just keep on doing the shuffle…

the bag of grapes I ate whilst tidying up - that and many coffee's

Ok, so I was bored and took pictures of the grapes…

My problems:
–¬†the bay window.¬† I love the window for the light it lets in and the view but it has made those little weird little corners where nothing will fit.
–¬†there is only a couple of feet before the corner of the house so that creates another corner that¬†makes it¬†awkward to¬†fit furniture in.
Рit is through way!  There is a door on one side to the kitchen/dining and just half a wall on the other backing onto the lounge (this wall is partly the chimney).
Рthen the french doors (right between said corner of house and walkway into lounge.
– on the back side of the chimney someone has ever so kindly put up floating shelves (at stupid heights) so I am limited with what goes underneath…

But am I complaining… well, just a little bit.¬† I have my tall boy (large chest of drawers, not tall children, although two are taller than me…) under these shelves with a cd rack one side and filing cabinet with jewellery storage on the other.¬† Works fine.
Against the back wall facing the kitchen is my mega set of shelves (I was so happy when we found these, they are the perfect fit for all my beady boxes).  Next to this was a space that was a pain.  There is a double power point here which means certain boxes or containers cannot fit or have to look messy sitting at an angle.

before - a mess.

I was in a second-hand shop close by the other day and spotted the perfect set of shelves РI measured, ran home (drove), measure my space then went back and paid for them.  They would be the Perfect Fit! And they are.

after - in progress

I just need to find a space for my market boxes when they’re not in use… hmmm.¬† That is 3 large plastic containers & a suitcase, then two others with odd props and the like in them.¬† A lot of space required.

My desk, as always was stupidly messy.

new shelves, and an email stating I needed to take my trestles to market this week (guess what I use as a beading table??) meant I had to get to work.

My plan was to put all things from the tall boy into the new shelves and¬†utilse the¬†tall boy for all my materials and sewing bits… ah, yeah… that was a good thought…

will all this fit into the tall boy..?

‘Business’ things fit into some funky baskets on the shelves, then comes the fun part getting all my glass, resin, clay, and light tent to fit in the space so it is easy and I know where everything is…
Well, I got started, and by the time I went to bed was pretty pleased with myself… not for long.¬† I woke this morning to another stupidly messy desk…. now I could have taken the easy way out and just stuffed everything into boxes and been done with it. But I didn’t. Put everything where it belongs so I don’t have to back track later.

I was meant to tidy the table... I thought so. This is clean compared to the night before.

Now to get all the material to fit in the drawers… like that’s gonna happen!

ooh, look, more little jars to put beads in....

neat, semi sorted beads and findings

a clean and tidy table….

and the piece de resistance….

full, finished and looking soo much better ūüôā

I was going to do some more sewing tonight and get¬†some new¬†bags ready for the market – well one is nearly done.¬† Just a little hand sewing of beady fringelets¬†to do.¬† the others… nowhere near ready to sew even…

Now the table has sewing all over it, but that will be easy to move later on. Now, I best get back to it if I’m going to get at least one more done..

keep smiling ūüôā
Jennifer