A little over a year ago, my husband moved his glass shop out of the garden shed and into a rented space. It was quite a big move, and a bit scary having to make a monthly rent payment. The owner of the property was very kind and worked with us, providing a sliding scale until the shop was up and running. Our plan was really just to try and make it a year in the new space and then reevaluate whether it was working for us or not.
A year later and the shop is running strong. The original work bench has been rebuild and there are now 3 permanent work stations with torches and ventilation. Sometime after the new year, we are hoping to add two more work stations, so he'll be set up for teaching group classes.
Kenan has one full time shop mate who rents a space, and the third bench/torch is available for rent or for glass students to use. The shop provides a much better atmosphere for teaching then the tiny little garden shed did. :)
My husband doin' his thing. :) The man is a work horse. He works long days, weekends and holidays. i admit we miss having him here, although i know he gets a lot more work done without the distractions of home.
Kenan's shop mate, Darren C. has been blowing glass for around 15 years. Originally from Oregon/Washington area, he came to Floyd around a year ago and met up with Kenan quite by chance. He's been renting a space in the glass shop for almost 5 months. You can view some of his work here.
This display counter is our first step towards turning half of the space into a retail store. Kenan found this lighted display counter/case on Craigslist. There used to be a corner stage on the floor here, carpeting and mural on the wall. So he had to take apart the stage, rip up all the carpeting and paint over the mural. The new work benches were made from the wood that came from tearing out the stage. It's been quite a bit of work just to get the area cleaned up a bit. Adding the display counter makes it feel a bit more real. One day soon the shelves will be filled with glass work and jewelry. We are hoping to also eventually paint it something other than white, and decorate the walls with the artwork of local artists. Ideally beside just blown glass we will also have artwork, clothing, jewelry etc on consignment giving local artists another outlet for their work.
It's a slow process, but ever little step forward is quite exciting. Ideally we will have the retail store open in the spring.