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Magic Mirrors Keynote gift

Updated: Jun 7, 2020

The Australian Fairy Tale Society is having a 3 day conference over the Queen's Birthday long weekend (Australian public holiday-not Lizzie's actual birthday-go figure). The theme is Magic Mirrors: The Seen and the Unseen

About 7 months ago I was asked if I could make a miniature mirror for $X or under as a thank you gift for their Keynote speaker (who is an artist I much admire).

In all honesty, I had to say no. Going small does not necessarily mean less expensive... BUT! I said after some reflection I could do something creative with a found mirror. There was some doubt in their tone of agreement, but it appears they trusted my judgement.

I had thoughts of using a mirror compact and doing something to it. Ideas came and went. I bought a lovely vintage powder compact, which sunk 60% of the budget. I settled on the idea of replacing the powder section with an engraved piece of coloured glass, with the text engraved in a way that to read it you are required to look in the mirror.

Happy with that concept I then mulled over how to create some 'flash glass'. Flash glass is sheet glass with a very thin layer of colour on one side. When you sandblast or engrave away the coloured side you can create imagery or pattern. I could buy some, but  $$$... make some, but $$$ and then guess what fell into my lap?

A large piece of blue blown glass was being offered FREE at the Canberra Glassworks, so long, as that person smashed the object. I jumped at the chance and claimed my prize. I clobbered it with a hammer (safely and satisfyingly).

I then cut a small circle out of one of the shards (harder than you would think). I ground the edges and engraved some lettering on one side and flourishes on the other.

I am pleased with the result. I consider this a successful prototype that I shall put some effort into developing further with both sides of the glass in mind.

I am delighted to say that both the Australian Fairy Tale Society and their Keynote speaker (Kathleen Jennings) were happy with the gift.

What do you think? What would you want to be engraved on it?

Also if you see any second-hand powder compacts at a good price let me know!

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This is such a great story - I loved how blue glass just manifested in the nick of time! Beautiful concept

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