glass totems

obxncOctober 27, 2007

I need help with putting totems together. I have pvc pipe, how do I start with the small vase glued to the pipe, and then how do I add the larger parts. What kind of set up for holding pipe while adding larger parts. Thanks, having a wonderful time with this project. obxnc

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Hey! I wish I could help but I'm a newbie to the T2T thing & still learning (still haven't gotten up enough nerve to try something) but there are so many talented people here that they have me believing I could actually do something cool. I just wanted to say hello as I'm from Eastern NC currently living in Durham. Good luck & be sure to post pics!!!

    Bookmark   October 28, 2007 at 12:14PM
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You can ask at the stained glass & Mosaic forum . There's a ton of people there that make totems that are just awesome.

Here is a link that might be useful: Stained glass & mosaic forum

    Bookmark   October 28, 2007 at 12:34PM
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Hi Obxnc, I'm no expert, but I've made about 13 so far. I mounted all but three of mine on rebar, the other three sit on the ground.

The main thing with your pvc pipe is that you find a bud vase that will slip down over it.

I put my bud vase upside down inside a larger vase and stuff wadded up plastic bags around it to hold it straight and secure. Make sure the bottom of the bud vase sits slightly higher than the rim of the larger vase. Then I squeeze GE Silicone II clear for windows and doors onto the bottom of the bud vase. Next I put my plate or bowl down on top of the glue.

(I usually play with all my glass pieces before I start gluing to determine what fits together well and in what order I want to stack them.) Next select your next piece. It can be a vase or glass or candlestick. At this point I usually like to leave these to dry overnight.

While those are drying, you can usually glue two or three additional pieces together. Then tomorrow, those will be ready to glue onto the ones that have dried.

Don't get in too big of a hurry--the drying part is really important so that nothing slips and so you can get everything on nice and straight.

Once you have all your chosen pieces glued together, go drive your pvc into the garden where you want your totem to go. Then carefully carry your totem out and slide it down onto the pvc. If it is a bit wobbly, you can just cut a piece of sponge or a cleaning pad and slip it over the pvc so the bud vase slides over it.

Now stand back and admire how gorgeous your totem looks with your flowers and the sun shining on it! Enjoy! And do be careful, totems can be very addictive. ;o) Luvs

    Bookmark   October 29, 2007 at 12:25AM
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Luvs: I see how and why you get the name!!!
You are such a great teacher..... thanks for helping obxnc...
and helping me TOOOOOO!
You are amazing
Glad you ask for help obxnc cause I was tooooooooo scared to ask and Now by Reading ... I learned tooooooo!
God Bless!

    Bookmark   October 31, 2007 at 4:38PM
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I thought of you totem makers recently when I was at this junk shop which has a lot of random vintage items for $1 a piece. They have so many milkglass pieces and crystal items, totem lovers could absolutely clean up.

I had to resist choosing a few pieces myself (because, ya know, it's not like I actually NEED more projects or collecting addictions...) :-)

But what fun for someone!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2007 at 10:59AM
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Susie, thanks for the kind words. That's what these forums are all about--helping each other learn to do new things. I was lucky enough to have a very nice GJ poster who helped me when I first wanted to do them--just trying to pass it on.

Jenn, I don't NEED anymore totems, but sometimes it is so hard to pass by an item that I know would look great in a totem! I think the "collecting" is in our blood, don't you? LOL Hmmm, a milkglass totem would really look pretty too--NO,No, don't even think about it! Ha ha


    Bookmark   November 1, 2007 at 12:36PM
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I've seen some nice milkglass totems-- I'll have to think of where I saw them. I suspect it's this lady who goes by the name of Joyluck on the HGTV t-to-t board. She's a whiz with totems, too. If I see one of her photos again, I'll send you a link.

Not that I'm trying to enable, just to share. :-)


    Bookmark   November 1, 2007 at 2:27PM
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Just happened to wander in here and couldn't resist the thread title of "glass totems"! Thanks, Jenn for the nice words. Unfortunately most of my totem pics are on the computer that crashed and I haven't had them "rescued" yet. There are some pics on my Shutterfly of some of the "rejects". Here's the link: They are not arranged in my garden but out by the driveway for the yard sale.

I made about 2 dozen totems 2 years ago in the winter, sold the nicer ones that year and all the rest this last summer. We are planning to move and they are not at all easy to move. I'll definitely be making more, have a couple boxes of glass saved for them.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 11:32PM
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Luckygal, if those were your "rejects", then I can only imagine how great the others were! Honestly, those all look really nice. I enjoyed seeing the other things you have made as well. They were all very nice, you do nice work. ;o) Luvs

    Bookmark   November 10, 2007 at 12:36PM
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Thanks, Luvs! The other totems had nicer colored glass and were a lot taller. I got more than a little carried away with making them! I love T2T stuff.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2007 at 1:39PM
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Thanks for all the help from everyone, I just finished my first and will send photo when I get them back. I not into digital photo, do it the old fashioned way. I wanted a glass angel for the top of my first one. I could not find any here today. Ordered one from ebay, did not cost musch but the shipping was expensive, but this is my gift to myself so I did not mind the expense. Having a hard time finding glass objects here, not a lot of places to choose from, if anyone has a idea please let me know. OBXNC/

    Bookmark   November 10, 2007 at 1:52PM
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I bought most of the glass objects for my garden totems from yard sales and thrift shops. Occasionally I would find a small ceramic or glass figurine at the dollar store to place inside a larger glass "vessel". It does take time to collect suitable pieces tho. I started doing this in the winter when there were no yard sales, but fortunately I had quite a few things around the house that I had collected. I recently bought some really cute glass and gold Christmas angel decorations which I might use in a totem. They were only $1 each.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2007 at 3:34PM
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This is a great page. I am into making "totems". I have a "Reveal" party this weekend to show family and friends my art.I have about 50 pieces. Not only do I make totems, it is fun to make jewelry holders, serving pieces and flower plates. It will be fun to get reactions this weekend, because I have not disclosed the reason for the party!!! I have been accepted to my first art show in August to see if there is a market for these lovely creatures.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2011 at 9:10AM
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LOL- I was reading this, and saw that Luvstocraft ONLY made 13 totems so far. I thought, I KNOW she's made more than this!
then I checked the date... hee heee...

    Bookmark   May 12, 2011 at 1:31PM
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