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A Memorial in Glass

A customer came to me asking if it would be possible to create a memorial to her mother and grandmother with a custom wind chime, something that would include a picture of them.

I've worked with fusing photo paper many times before and this was the perfect project. She brought a photo for me to scan and we talked about her family and mother and grandmother. From there I came up with a design, based on that conversation.

Sourcing elements is fun. Normally I use tree branches to suspend the glass chimes - and I find tree branches everywhere. This time I was looking for something special, so I headed for my favorite antique store - Nook & Cranny on HWY 89 in Lehi, UT. I wasn't disappointed. Found this wonderful serving/salad fork that would suit my purposes.

I used a small drill bit to make holes in the fork to suspend the chimes and the chain for hanging the whole wind chime. Drilling small holes is easy enough, you need a steady hand, a solid surface and a good drill. I don't use my cordless for projects like this - no school like old school - a old corded Craftsman cuts through metal like it's butter!

To create the focal pieces of the chimes I took the scanned photo and edited it with Photoshop to create a black and white image that would work best with fusing photo paper. We chose Rafael's Angels to accompany Mom and Grandma.

With the decals created I applied them to white glass and let them dry before going into the kiln.

Once the glass pieces had been fired and the wind chime assembled we had a wonderful memorial to Mom and Grandma. Glass wind chimes are stronger than you might think and the sound is very pleasing.