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The Theme Items
MIRROR was cut up into small mirrors for inside the caravan. The felt backing used as a rug inside, the oval frame as the caravan's rear window frame, and the
scrollwork border cut up and used as decorative scrollwork outside the caravan.
YELLOW NUGGETS used in decorative panels outside the caravan.
DICHROIC GLASS. The green corrugated used to make decorative outside panels, the smooth used as decoration on the wheel spokes, the rippled as window curtains, and the blue bumpy as wall tiles behind the stove.
BLUE PYRAMIDS used as planters.
CHAIN used as border around the dichroic panels on the caravan sides.
GREEN NUGGETS used as the inside foliage in the planters.
RED TASSELS-2 used to make Lutes, and 3 as water pitchers.
GLASS BUTTERFLIES used to make a pentagram wind chime.
BEVELS used as windows for the caravan.
To be sure that everything was in proportion, it was built to scale 1" to 1'. I built everything myself, and with only materials used from the glass shop.
The Caravan body and roof was built on a ½" zinc channel frame with the roof covered in sheet copper. The wheels have glass spokes with lead rebar rims and hub. Dichroic glass was used to decorate the spokes. The pots, coffee mugs, and the stove were made from copper wire with copper wire added. The musical instruments (guitar, lutes, and violin) copper pipe with copper wire added. The candle lamps are non-glare glass with a piece of painted copper wire for candles. The planter ferns are pieces of oak leaf brass edging painted green.
The first problem was in coming up with a design to use up that weird mixture of theme items. It was even more difficult because I had to make something small enough to take on an airplane as carry-on luggage. I wasn't willing to trust shipping it in case it didn't arrive in time, and sure wouldn't trust letting the airline luggage handlers have at it. A lot of good ideas got rejected because they'd be too big. The more I looked at the collection of stuff, the more I thought it looked flashy, trashy and tacky. Then inspiration struck. That was a perfect description of a Gypsy Caravan. For this final project I wanted to "go all out." If I couldn't make something big, I'd make it intricate, with as much detail as possible. The most difficult part was making the copper roof assembly and aligning the chimney so that the whole roof could easily be detached to view inside. It was challenging to experiment with how to make all the miniature things to add to the caravan. This was a fun project. This was the first time I've built something that the design idea was to make it as cluttered and tacky as possible.