I was just spending a lazy Sunday morning watching “Sunday Morning” the news show with Charles Osgood. Towards the end of the broadcast they had a segment done by the funny straight man, Ben Stein. His comments really got to me and made me want to get the word out as much as I could as well. He was talking about a question he asked his psychologist whom he referred to as a “very smart guy”, and I agree. He asked his shrink about what makes people happy. And he said the guy answered like a shot, basically those who “Choose to live” a life that they want and not what everyone else says they should be, are the happiest people. Those who choose the path that others want for them wind up doing well but are not happy. And as they go further through life lose the opportunities to build contacts and knowledge within the area they would really like to be a part of, in essence making it pretty much impossible to change direction. Those who choose the more risky or less traveled paths usually live on the edge but are extemely happy. I would like to think that, that is the path I have chosen. I started out wanted to be the doctor, lawyer or something very main stream. Nothing seemed right to me and thank goodness my parents really didn’t pressure me one way or the other. All along my parents had always had a craft glass business which went from craft shows to a storefront. I don’t know why it took me as long as it did to figure out that was where I was a perfect fit. I have been working there now for over 15 years and although there are ups and downs in owning your own business, it really is the most fulfilling thing in the world. And that is what life is all about. Choosing to live a fun and exciting life, instead of a safe boring one. If you have chosen either path, let me know how you feel by commenting on this blog.
A few years after I learned to work with powdered glasses in a kiln I was fortunate enough to spend a few weeks at lake Tahoe teaching a glass bead making class. On my days off I would travel around and note all the beauty around me. Lake Tahoe and the surrounding countryside is some of the most scenic and dramatic landscape I’ve ever seen. There are all these giant boulders everywhere along the lake shore and beautiful ancient trees stand like sentinels overlooking the lake. Laying in the sun on a huge rock I was totally inspired to paint some landscape images with powdered glass using my special technique of glass fusing. I worked on a whole series of drawings while I was there, planning work for when I returned home. I recently rediscovered those drawings and made this piece which still resonates with the special spirit of Lake Tahoe. Let me know how Lake Tahoe has inspired you by commenting on this post!
Tons of people come into our store looking for a housewarming gift. And most of the time they have no clue how the recipients have decorated their new home. We usually steer them towards our grape design at that point since it really doesn’t have to go with the decor. They go great with wine and cheese which makes them the perfect entertaining pieces. Our rectangular plate in this line is probably the one that we sell the most. It is the perfect size for hors’dourves and of course cheese and crackers. If you have any funny stories of weird things you have received as a housewarming gift, comment on this article so that I can get a laugh!
In all of my years of making fused glass dinnerware, I have had many requests for a Stargazer Lily design. I finally received a request from one of my best customers to make the design for a shower gift she needed. I have some of these great lilies coming up in my garden now. I have never had lilies before so I was so excited to see them. They are so beautiful and seem very long lasting. They seem to be the favorite of many people. I have had such a response to the design that I keep hearing the stories of why everyone loves them so much. If you have a story like that I would love to hear it! Please comment with your story or love of the Stargazer!
Canvasing up and down the turnpike as we finished up with the Philadelphia Flower show, I was anxious to get my new big stained glass mosaic hung back up in the shop since it did’nt sell as I’d hoped it would. I really like the way this piece came out so maybe a little,I was glad it did not sell. I usually pick up a few commissions at the show, and there was a lot of interest in this one. I know it will sell soon.A few weeks after the show ended I got an e-mail from a lady I had talked to at the Philly Flower Show, inquiring about the Heron. She needed a window however and we have begun a beautiful glass on glass mosaic of Egrets that will be installed in a window. It is designed to illuminate and just glow up in the light. It will have the beautiful intricacy of a mosaic, but up in the light rather than wall art. I am so excited about this one because the drawings are coming out really well.
Now, meanwhile while this is all going on, I also keep getting “signs” along the way. I am also waiting to hear from an earlier client that ALSO wants a stained glass Great Blue Heron for their house in Florida. By “signs” I mean little coincidences that involve seeing herons. I was leaving a local park after walking Sugar, our dog, and a huge heron burst out of the underbrush and noisily flew away, obviously very annoyed. There have been several instances where the birds appear at key moments. To me it feels like I’m on the right path.
As we drive back and forth between The Philly Flower show and home, I always notice a couple of waterways from the NJ turnpike. It’s a no-man’s land out there, and I couldn’t tell you exactly where they are, but I always say I’m going to take my kayak out there someday. Usually in the summer the bright splashes of green form a beautiful backdrop for the many water birds there. Seems like I always cross paths with Herons and Egrets when I’m out paddling. Since I got in to kayaking I have been able to get so close to them. The last time was out in Barnegat Bay, I accidentally spooked a Great Blue Heron, being only a few yards from it as I emerged from some sedges. I just saw this image in my head and knew I wanted to do a big mosaic with evening colours of that bird. I had some perfect glass colours in hand and just finished it in time to debut for this year’s Philadelphia Flower Show. Please comment and let me know if you have had any good close-ups with any water birds.
We started displaying our art glass at the Philadelphia Flower show over 25 years ago! I can’t believe how time flies by. I have many fond memories of the show and some plants that are still around. I love and collect orchids and there is no other place in the world to see amazing orchids and buy them. It definately inspired my orchid line of glassware. I remember drawing the design during a 3 day snow storm many years ago when we didn’t have electricity for that long and I was going stir crazy. My favorite orchids were always Catleyas but I have come to love phals since I can grow them so well on my kitchen window sill. Come check out our great funtional glassware at the show this year! 2010. The theme this year is a world of flowers so it should be a great one!
Recently, My father-in-law Ray Folio and I rode our bicycles from Washington DC to Boston, Pa., a suburb of Pittsburgh. We joined 50 other riders for the 7 day journey. It was a blast! We rode an average of 45 miles each day and camped under the stars along the way. Riding up the Potomac river was so awesome. To think of the incredible history of this area really made me feel some small piece of our nation’s beginnings! All along the way we noticed the beginnings of Fall colours on the trees. We rode along the C&O canal for three days. I kept seeing beautiful ideas for new glasswork along the trail. As we transitioned off the C&O canal trail and on to the Great Allegheny Passage trail, the elevation gained as well as the colours on the trees. I became inspired and saw exactly the way I was going with my glass when I returned to work in the studio. Back at the studio now and missing sleeping under the stars, I have begun a new line of pieces especially inspired by the electric, limitless possibilities of fall colours all around us now.
Hello Everyone! This is our first blog! We are a true mom and pop shop of unique and personalized art glass products. This site is a combination of 3 different business all within the art glass field. Folio Art Glass has been in business since 1976 and started out in my parent’s garage. They started as stained glass artists and over time morphed into a fused/kiln fired glass company. Folio art glass specializes in fused glass seasonal products and has something for every season and every reason. Starry Night glass works is my business and focuses solely on framing all sorts of pieces in everything from traditional to contemporary products, especially wedding invitations. Starry Night’s items are great for first wedding anniversary gifts, 25th anniversary gifts, 50th anniversary gifts, baby gifts, and more. They all are great personalized gifts for everyone on your list! T Dorland studio is my husband’s company who is the real artist among us. He creates only one of a kind glass art pieces in all sorts of glass media, from stained glass to stained glass mosaics, to “glasscapes” and other kiln fired art pieces. We are excited to share our work with the world and bring together a family who works together in a whole new way!