Last year a few of us from my WI went to Alma House in Ripon for a workshop with Rachel Poole to make a stained glass nativity, we loved it and we were really proud of our nativities. So when we discovered Rachel would be doing another stained glass workshop myself and Theresa put our names down immediately. This time we would be making Christmas decorations.
It was a lovely autumn day when we drove over to Ripon, this was the canal just by the sandwich shop!
We had a great time at the workshop, Rachel is an excellent tutor, knowing we had been before she was happy for us to work on independently but more than happy to do quick refreshers in how to do various stages.
Rachel got everyone to tackle the holly first because as she said, everyone thinks it’s the most difficult where as actually it’s one of the easier ones to do! We learnt how to score the glass and break it and then how to grind the edges to neaten and smooth them off. We all then chose different decorations to make, cutting all the glass and grinding it before lunch.
Choosing glass reminded me a lot of selecting fabric, I fell for the same colours, purple, jade, blue! We flicked through the box containing little sheets of glass and all of a sudden I’d see one and think Oooh I like that!
The Christmas decorations were made using the Tiffany technique, so we had to stick narrow copper tape around each piece of glass, then came the fun bit…
We had to soak each piece in acid and then solder all round, coating the copper tape completely. We could then solder different pieces together and add the silver wire to decorate. We learnt very quickly that the other end of the wire gets very hot when you solder!
We had a great time and we’re already looking forward to next years workshops with Rachel.