Friday, February 29, 2008

Portland Saturday Market

This is my 6th season at the Portland Saturday Market. We officially open for the first day of the year tomorrow - March 1st.

Here in Portland I have the opportunity to vend every weekend of the year, with January and February off. The weather is pretty exceptional here (despite the rumors of constant rain) - this market has only shut down twice in its 33 year existence (once because of the ash from Mt Helens blowing up and once when the city was freak-style buried in snow).
Tomorrow its supposed to be T-storming !!! I probably shouldn't go down and set up, but its the first day of the year and I feel obligated and curious... So downtown I will go with a car full of my work. All week it was beautiful and 70degrees out. I am hoping the weather will last thru the weekend (NO RAIN puhlease!)

I'll take pictures... should be an interesting day tomorrow!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

DesignSponge Biz Lady Meetup

Last night I attended a most incredible biz women in design meet-up. Organized by Grace Bonney of Design*Sponge and hosted by the Design Within Reach Pearl studio.

There were four discussions: sales (consignment v. wholesale) , finances (Mercy Corps NW opportunities), finding success as an artist (Amy Ruppel), and an amazing PR talk by Grace herself.

The picture does not do the meeting justice. There were A LOT of local business ladies there. I was shy to take pictures (me?!).

Grace posted notes from her talk: really good stuff - check it out if you are interested:
I will be utilizing this "four-pronged attack" for sure! How could I not! This advice is like gold!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Yoga Ladies

Okay, so I have been trying to stock up... and taking lots of pictures...
and heres another installment of my video fun!!! Watch me make em'!

Enjoy - Namaste

and don't forget you can buy these:
in my Etsy shop
and you can contact me with any custom orders (you pick the color and pose)

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Breaking Point

Originally uploaded by LeahPellegrini
Do people really want to know what we bloggers have for breakfast?

Well, I had tea. There ya go.

But hey - I can make this relevant and interesting to any glass curious minds:

Ever wonder why Pyrex brand glass can hold boiling water and sit in a hot oven? Pyrex is one company (of many) that produce what is technically known as Borosilicate Glass, "boro" for short. Boro is especially stress resistant. Most importantly boro can take thermal shock without breaking - and this is what makes it so special.

Regular artistic glass (soda-lime, crystal, moretti Italian glass, etc...) all are very temperature sensitive. Thermal shock is more violent to glass than blunt trauma. Glass is hot and molten up over 2000degrees Fahrenheit - in that range between frozen glass at room temperature and hot molten glass there are a few key temperatures. There is a specific temp. that I call "the stress point" - this is when the glass is most likely to express shock (ie break). Think about a person, every person has a breaking point, a button so-to-speak. Glass is no different, each glass has a temperature that will manifest cracks where tension was held.

Boro has a stress point around 950degrees Fahrenheit. All other types of glass have a stress point around 150degrees Fahrenheit. This is why if you put a piece of art glass in the oven, you will probably break it. Pour boiling water into a glass vase and it will shatter, however a piece of boro (like the Pyrex tea cup in the pictures) can take all sorts of high temperatures. Nothing we do in the kitchen will get the glass up around 950degrees, so we can use the Pyrex glass to cook without worrying about cracks and breaking.

Friday, February 8, 2008

Continued Video Fun

Ever wonder how I make my little mobiles? Heres a glimpse. Enjoy!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Embellished Fused Glass

Originally uploaded by LeahPellegrini
Tonight I taught a fun class that I call "Torch for Fusion". Its all about playing with the torch to heat and manipulate glass. This glass can then be used to embellish a piece of fused glass. The plate in the picture has been decorated with a glass magnolia tree branch in full bloom. I made the embellishments in the flame and then I applied the branch onto the plate in a separate kiln firing before slumping the plate into its mold.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Pyrex Glass Dichroic Rings

Originally uploaded by LeahPellegrini
its official - my rings are now in my Etsy shop

They are so comfortable, and amazingly strong - I just love them. I've been making them for years, hundreds and hundreds of them. Their simple beauty makes them a pleasure to wear.

Go check it out!§ion_id=5308759

Sunday, February 3, 2008


last night I made some coils out of Bullseye glass color samples

Saturday, February 2, 2008


Originally uploaded by LeahPellegrini
The rain here in Portland can get pretty intense. This morning after I woke up, there was a long moment of simply laying still and watching the rain come down. At an angle. Never stopping.

The exciting part is that its snowing up at any elevation around here. Lots of it! Snow shoeing the other day was a great excuse to go check it out (its been snowing hard for days) - avalanches are falling everywhere blocking highways faster than the plows can keep them clear. Pretty exciting stuff. Especially living down here in the valley where we are snow free. There is something sweet about not having to shovel my car out of the snow to pull out of a driveway.

Okay - so the picture - this is a mobile I make, I've been making it for years. It looks like a mobile of rain. Especially selling it here in Portland. And today as it rains outside I thought of this mobile and I wanted to share. There is one in my bedroom by a large long window.

The whole idea of letting go is something that I think about a lot. There is an Oshu Zen reading on this subject that visualizes letting go as dew drops falling off lotus leaves in the morning. Its a beautiful way of thinking about a difficult subject. So I made this mobile to decorate my space and twinkle from time to time to remind me that whatever I am letting go of is easy and beautiful and simply part of life, from the zen perspective. :)

The arches of the metal beams are symbolic of the gentle curves of leaves, and the little blue droplets I make are the dew drops. Its a beautiful little mobile. To read more about it, and see more pictures of it - go to

Friday, February 1, 2008

Picture Preference Poll

I want to start listing my rings online... the pictures have got to be fun and simple, creative... above is an old shot (black and white grayscale background) from years ago. I thought I'd fresh it up a bit and come up with a style I can consistently use to list these guys online for sale.

What do you think? Cast your vote please - I am curious! You can vote on the right hand side.

#1: Plain White Background

#2: Dramatic Spotlight Background

my brother thinks this looks like the ring is on stage performing

I got the tip for this technique from Loriola - an amazing member of the Etsy Glass Artists - pops like a magazine page!

#3: Colored background... the color could vary, I was thinking about trying out orange today to... but this gets the point across

#4: Action Shot

I am no hand model. And I didn't even get out my tripod for this one, so the other hand is holding the camera :)

But if this is popular I could work on better shots of this type of thing