Born and raised in North Carolina I became interested in stained glass as a hobby in 1993. At the time we were building a house and wanted some stained glass done for it. I remember sitting in church as a child and staring at amazement at the beautiful stained glass windows. I was so entranced by it then I knew I would one day have some. I signed up for classes and soon became addicted to the art.
I finished my first cabinet window while construction was still going on in an upstairs unfinished room. I remember being so determined and that it didn’t matter if it was 95 degrees in there.
Eventually I set up a studio in my new home (in the same room) and started making things for family and friends as well as myself. It wasn’t long before my entire home was completely filled with it. I had reached a point I was either going to have to stop or find an outlet for it.
So, in 1996 A Glass Menagerie was born. At first I only had a couple of pages of products and it has eventually grown to what it is today. Stepping stones were introduced as well as cabinet door inserts, transoms and sidelights. The smaller gift items were also added. Unlike a lot of artists I don’t focus on making one type of thing such as just windows. I enjoy making all types of items.
In 1999 I was contacted by the editor (Glen Dinella) of Better Homes and Gardens’ Garden Deck and Landscape. I was delighted that he wanted to feature some of my stepping stones in the summer edition. He liked them so well he kept one for his own personal use. The flamingo stone still resides at his home to this day.
After 19 years of doing glass I have never tired of it. I have done a multitude of other occupations in my life including ownership of several other businesses but none have completely captured my heart as much as stained glass. I will probably do it the rest of my life or until I can no longer see. My glasses keep getting thicker every year.