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My glass Cape Breton and Me

Archive for the category “jewelry”

New Pieces

WOW long over due but finally got back to taking some pictures and uploading here. We will start with some cast jewelry done with mixed frit colours.

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A new piece of cast dichroic. 102_0442

And some tableware etc.

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Kiln Formed Dichroic Pendants

One more product to add to our table this year.

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Hard to get good pictures of glass especially dichroic. But I must say, I am very pleased how these turned out.

New Dichroic Watches

Well have finally got some new watches made for the Center.

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The dichroic pieces came out really good and the right size.

Finally Some Movement Towards Ships

Over the holidays we received a shipment of some glass crystal roundels and nuggets, I kept looking at them trying to decide what to do. A little bit of funk and retro seems to work. Also something bigger than I would usually make but apparently big works and sells.

So here is a shot of the mixture. The blue and copper are metallic and some of the others are aurora borealis coated. Some will make watches and some sets with necklace,bracelet and earrings. 



Then I tried a couple of necklaces with the blue. First one done with small blue in between nuggets. The necklace will be finished with a combination small crystal beads blue,copper and amber with a lobster clasp.



Then I looked at it and decided to try copper crystal beads in between, with the same multi crystals to finish off the necklace.



I think I like the copper between better and will do the reverse with the copper nuggets.

Now I have to get back to cleaning the office.

Hot Out of The Kiln

It’s been awhile but life got in the way and I didn’t have time to play.

I decided to cast jewelry for next season so here are the first experiments, not cleaned up or fire polished yet but they look good if I do say so myself.


Notice there are 2 belt buckles that came out particularly nice. I’ll take some individual photos later.

Also out of that firing several pieces of Our Town and Company Houses and the head of the pit.


Here is a picture of a typical Company House


Here’s a picture of the pit head from many years ago. The rail line carried men to and from the Deeps and hauled the coal out. Some of our mines were 7 miles out under the Atlantic Ocean.


In my grandparents time and before they used horses under ground.


Both men and horses didn’t manage to grow tall and strong. The men usually went under as boys and worked until they retired. While searching for these pictures I was once again reminded of the tough life a miner’s life was and how true the song “Owe my Soul to the Company Store” was.

This piece comes from the Miner’s Museum in Glace Bay, NS

“In March of 1925, Cape Breton coal miners were receiving $3.65 in daily wages and had been working part-time for more than three years. They burned company coal to heat company houses illuminated by company electricity. Their families drank company water, were indebted to the company store and were financially destitute. Local clergy spoke of children clothed in flour sacks and dying of starvation from the infamous “four cent meal”….

In the early days of 1925, “The Company”added insult to injury by eliminating credit for miners at the company store and further reducing days of work at the collieries…

The next two months were filled with grief and hardship; Besco cut off the sale of coal to miners houses and mounted a vigorous public relations campaign to blame the miners for their own predicament. The UMWA lobbied for intervention from the Liberal Provincial and Federal governments to no avail; this prompted the union’s most difficult decision to date. On June 3, 1925, the UMWA withdrew the last maintenance men from Besco’s power plant at Waterford Lake. (Doing this would have resulted in the mines filling with water) In retaliation, the company cut off electricity and water to the Town of New Waterford, which included the hospital filled with extremely sick children…

On June 11, 1925, drunken company police charged down Plummer Avenue on horseback, beating all who stood in their path. They rode through the schoolyards, knocking down innocent children while joking that the miners were at home hiding under their beds. It was the last straw…

Riots resulted with one miner William Davis being shot and killed

The miners’ reaction was swift and decisive. They swarmed the power plant, overpowered the company police and marched them off to the town jail. For several nights afterward, the coal towns were under a state of siege by the miners. They raided the company stores to feed their starving families and then burned the stores to the ground to eliminate the last symbol of corporate greed and servitude in the Cape Breton coalfields. The company stores never re-opened after the coal wars of 1925.

The history of mine workers is filled with memories of class struggle and of brotherhood. It is summed up in the words of former District 26 President Stephen J. Drake – “There is no finer person on this planet than the working man who carries his lunch can deep into the bowels of the earth. Far beneath the ocean he works the black seam an endless ribbon of steel his only link to fresh air and blue skies. The steel rails symbolize a miners’ life, half buried underground, half reaching toward his final reward…”

Long story maybe for a blog but sometimes needs to be said again.

Other Our Town pieces


New Glass Links

This is a case of a change is as good as a rest. These I put in the small kiln last night and took out this morning. It started Sunday afternoon when I tried to weigh the frit. Bad batteries so off to Walmart. Batteries bought, half hour wasted. Put new batteries in to discover it was the scale. No second trip to walmart. So I guessed at the amounts and away we went.

Here are the results


These are sky blue glass cast links. The necklace is actually long with the links on one side however I don’t have a jewelry bust long enough to show it.

The other way the glass links can be combined are with necklace shortener  links.



These are diamond shaped glass links and needed a little less frit. The colour is called pink champagne and would look good in the gold links but the silver were in my hand. Remember the first go is always play time to see what you can do with the new pieces. No more will be made before there is a new scale and the large Christmas fair at Center 200 is over this weekend.


Fire Polished and Finally Ready

Several things got done yesterday.

My Aunt Ann sent some of her photos by email for the first time on her own. Here’s Louisbourg after high winds



Wendy opened her glass blowing studio and you can see some photos at

And I fractured some more marbles, this time iridized ones


They will be ready for the Cape Breton Home Crafters Christmas show at Center 200 on Nov 12,13 and 14. Along with lots of other goodies.

And last but not least I finally fire polished the pieces I made awhile ago. Because they are cast each one is unique.






Above are the 4 sizes of the tag series. More different styles before next season


Have a fun Halloween

Painted Sea Glass

Well I have been collecting sea glass along the shores of Cape Breton. I handed some off to Bob MacDougall last week to paint and here are our results.

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They will be at the ships on Tuesday.


Dichroic Rack

Well today I managed to finish one rack of dichroic pendants in preparation of Aug. 24, the first of our fall cruise ships. Nice to be able to put the cover on and put away until the 23rd  set up.

Next will be the marbles.


New Posters

Have been staying close to home for the past little while so thought that I would be productive and do up a couple of posters for the fall cruise ship season. They will go behind our table. Unfortunately they won’t let us attach anything to the walls so can’t hang them. We have one easel so we will trade off.

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