How often have you seen those beautiful stained glass windows, lampshades and vases and longed for the ability to create your own? Well right here in Sun Lakes we have the facilities and classes to do just that through the Sun Lakes Rock, Gem and Silver Club.
Nancy Hibbard has been instructing stained glass classes and serves as chairperson on the Board of the club for over 12 years. She is highly proficient at pulling forth the desire and creativity of the students, allowing them to create their own art pieces they will be proud to own and display. With careful oversight and one on one instruction, students can produce pieces that truly have the wow factor.
I visited the Oakwood facility to see the students in action. Carol Stagger had a work in progress depicting a wine bottle in green glass and a cluster of grapes in a surrounding area. Marian Jackson, another student, was at work on the glass grinder carefully shaping the piece for her work. Richard Sanderville was carefully arranging the pieces that would eventually become the tail feathers of a colorful bird. Most of the projects being worked on appeared to be framed art.
Large work tables and benches with mounted power and hand tools are available at the Oakwood facility. Class instruction includes the safe use of these tools. Nancy limits the classes to four students so she can provide the close up supervision and guidance students need to develop the skills and produce a genuine work of art. A modest $25 fee for the class includes everything needed except the glass and frame, allowing the student to pick those which suit their individual tastes. Classes are held four or five times each year and usually fill up fast. Once the students complete the course, they are free to work on their own projects at open shop. The shop is open on Fridays at Oakwood exclusively for them to pursue their projects. Expert help is always available from instructor/shop moderators at the open shops should it be needed.
Sun Lakes Rock Gem and Silver Club is one of the largest in the area and includes all types of rock, gem and silver classes and shops in three locations, Sun Lakes Country Club, Cottonwood and Oakwood. Meetings for the general membership are held the third Monday of each month at Sun Lakes Country Club, October through April at 10:00 a.m. in the Navajo Room. The club also has a new website www.SLRGS.com where schedules of classes and open shops are posted.
As the name of the club implies, there are many other classes available that teach rock identification, proper rock cutting, polishing and faceting as well as silver work, wire wrap, bead making and basket art. All are great forums for meeting new faces and making new friends. We hope to see you there and I can guarantee it’s a friendly club for newcomers to Sun Lakes.