Back From The Gathering Part I

Well, the bad news is that I’ve gained ten pounds. The good news is that I’m still not smoking and I’ve done all the traveling I plan to do this summer. That means I can pay attention to diet and exercise and hopefully get some of this weight off.

Speaking of traveling, I had a wonderful time at The Gathering! The only touristy thing that I did was going to the Dale Chihuly exhibit at the de Young museum in San Francisco. That was Tuesday. I asked a woman from my class (more on that in a moment) if she wanted to go to the exhibit, and we made plans to go. When she found out that we had to take a bus, she said she couldn’t go. So, I went by myself. I got lost and almost decided to go back to the hotel, but I persevered. I even met a very nice woman who does freelance illustrations. I’m glad I got to see the exhibit. My favorite room was the one where Chihuly said in the audio tour that one day he woke up and wanted to use every color there was. There was a lot of color in that room. It was cool.

That evening, I did something that profoundly affected the rest of the trip. I called Beth – the woman who was going to go to the exhibit with me – to see how she was doing. We got to talking and became fast friends. I was certainly happy to have someone to hang out with and go to dinner with and so forth. I think I would have had a good time anyway, but having a Gathering buddy was definitely better.

The class on Wed. – Glass Bead Making, From Hobby to Business – was really interesting. I learned about the Hobby Loss Rule, special problems in inventorying glass, to be a business you have to act like a business, and other things. I also realized that I’m not going into business any time real soon. But I got some good information, and I think when I am ready to open a business I will know how to go about it better.

I think my favorite part was the technical vendor area. Every time I went in there I spent more money! There were all sorts of tools, and glass of all sorts – mostly 104 coe. All different kinds of glass bead-making incidentals – oxygen concentrators, torches, magazines, jewelery findings – on and on… I mostly bought glass and a few tools. I did buy a couple of ribbons from the Fiber Goddess. She had some very nice fibers.

I really enjoyed the presentations too. I probably should have taken notes, but there is no test, and I’m not wanting to copy anyone anyway. I got basic ideas and tips and tricks and lots of stuff to think about. Plus it was nice to spend a couple days watching accomplished flame workers work. Different people had different approaches to basic techniques – from this I got experimenting ideas such as trying different tools for the same task to see which one works better – for example, tungsten pick vs. steel pick for raking.

The Bead Bazaar on Sat. was really great also. I bought four beads – and spent way too much money. The show opened at 9:00 AM for attendees only and then opened to the general public at 10:00 AM. I was sure to be there at nine with my plan of attack all ready – I had read in the forums that it was best to be there early. It was funny in a kind of creepy way, but there was a small crowd waiting to go in, and there was a countdown. I’m not sure that was warranted, but I’m glad I got there early. I really enjoyed looking at what other people had made and how it was displayed. I saw some amazing things.


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One response to “Back From The Gathering Part I

  1. Emily

    I tried to look at your stuff on Etsy & couldn’t find it….remember I am computer challenged! Can you provide a link???

    I saw Chihuly’s exhibit at the Botanical Gardens in NY. Looks better at the de Young, at least to me. Real live flowers are unbeatable competition; I thought his work paled beside them….but the two artists I went with didn’t see it all that way. Gorgeous stuff, presented by itself.

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