Wednesday, May 23, 2012

The Soft Glass Invitational...

This past weekend, we made the two hour trip up to Hilliard, Pennsylvania for the first-ever Soft Glass Invitational.  The retreat and bazaar were held at the Glass Blowing Center.  The location is out in the country and surrounded by peaceful views and friendly neighbors willing to show you their hand-hewn log cabins, handmade canons, and blacksmithing huts.

It was a nice trip and the drive out couldn't have been better.  It did my heart good to see familiar faces and to touch bases before the Bead & Button Show frenzy.  One of the smiling faces we always enjoy seeing is Maria Richmond of Lost Marbles!  She had a selection of finished jewelry and kits.  Maria teaches from time to time at Allegory Gallery.  (So if you're interested in taking one of her classes and are local, please let us know and we'll get things set up!)

Seems like it was only the other day I was set up next to Cleo of Grama Tortoise in Baltimore.  She was pregnant and laughing at my choice of snack foods!  Here she is with her son, Liam.  He looks just like his father... like someone made a copy, shrunk it down, and babified it!  Make sure to check out her amazing sculptural lampwork.  The details are simply amazing!
One of my first and dearest friends in the bead business was/is Patti Cahill!  She was in attendance with her candy-like creations.  I am happy to say that I took home a pocketful of her lovely work!
Above is a picture of Kristi Brokaw.  She makes adorable lampwork glass skulls and birdcages.  I was remiss in not getting one of the skulls.  I thought, "Oh, I'll just get one at Bead & Button."  But I found out later that she won't be attending this year!  Shucks!

Always inspiring, Sara Sally LaGrand was there with her stunning work.  When I see her artwork, it just boggles my mind and blows me away!  They seem to be alive.  One day I'll own one of her glass pieces.  (I do have a teapot that she subliminally made of my head.)
After the bazaar closed, we took a tour of the neighbor's property and he showed us around.  It was fascinating... albeit loud!  He showed us a canon, a bullwhip and invited us to come over later to fire guns.  His gun was called "Big Hammer" and big it was!

We didn't get an opportunity to shoot as we had to drive home that night, but we did get a chance to get dinner at the Center.  I was worried that we missed it!  I had been hearing whispers of the menu all day.  They served a very tasty meatloaf with cheesy mashed potatoes topped with Amish butter and a salad.  Delicious!

I could not have a post about the Soft Glass Invitational without mentioning the supremely awesome Lewis Wilson and Barb Cope Svetlick, and Jennifer Wilson of Soft Flex Company!  I also wanted to thank Kim from Fall Hill Bead and Gem for the glittering Herkimer diamond that she and Adam mine!

One of the things that I love about these sort of get togethers is that the people who come are good people.  They share their knowledge and offer friendly smiles.  I feel lucky to be apart of such a welcoming community!  We are a family.

1 comment:

Patti Cahill said...

Thank you Andrew for such a lovely summation. It was so nice that you were there too! Best, Patti