The North American Sea Glass Association (NASGA) has been working towards integrating NASGA‘s online presence, including the NASGA website, NASGA’s Facebook pages, the NASGA‘s NING social networking site, the Shorelines Newsletter, as well as our blog, to strengthen NASGA’s mission and increase NASGA’s presence within the sea glass community.
Each member of NASGA will have the opportunity to share their involvement with NASGA and the NASGA Mission, and “introduce” themselves as members of the North American Sea Glass Association. We’re calling this the “Meet the NASGA Members” blog series. We’re excited to share our next member with you.
Our next NASGA Member is Steve Gladhill and Tammy Thatcher of STBeachFinds from St. Leonard, Maryland.
NASGA: Hello, Steve and Tammy. How long have you been a member of NASGA?
We’ve been a member of NASGA since April 2015
NASGA: Can you share your “personal sea glass story” (how and when you became interested in sea glass)?
We have lived on the beach most of our lives. We walk the beach to relax and enjoy nature. In doing so you find all kinds of interesting things especially sea glass.
NASGA: Please tell us about your particular craft and when you formed your business or began practicing your skill.
Our business started approximately 3 years ago. Our collection had grown so much that we need a way to share it with people. We both love to be creative and started by a lot of trial and error, along with online research and most of all going to festivals and talking to people. We taught ourselves how to do wire wraps, drill glass and which glues work best.
NASGA: Are you also an avid sea glass collector (or do you solely enjoy working on your craft or skill), and are you partial to a certain type or color of sea glass?
We are most definitely collectors. Some of our most prized pieces decorate our home. We have a few reds, yellows and many shades of blues.
NASGA: If you are a collector, can you tell us about your collection and whether it may be difficult to part with some of your creations or incorporate your favorite pieces into projects?
It is hard sometimes to part with that special piece but we ask ourselves, if someone else would enjoy it as much as we do and would another piece work as well in the project? The piece usually ends up being used. Of course we all have those pieces that we absolutely will not part with.
NASGA: How has your craft evolved over time (how has experience helped you to perfect your craft and whether you were self-taught or took classes or had some other type of training, or whether you perhaps happened to discover your craft by accident or had an experience that shifted your focus from one type of craft/skill to another)?
We have definitely evolved over the last few years. We look back now on some of the early photos and can see an improvement in the quality of our work. We continue to research new techniques and talk to other crafts people to see what is working for them. Exchanging information is the best way to help each other succeed.
NASGA: Have you previously been (or are you currently) active in the association (have you had the opportunity to organize a festival, serve on the board, deliver a presentation, participate in educational-related events)?
We have not had the chance to do this yet, as we have only been members since April.
NASGA: How has your membership in NASGA benefited you professionally and/or personally?
We are hoping being part of NASGA will help us network and build our business over the upcoming years.
NASGA: Is there a particular NASGA festival that stands out as your favorite (if the member has participated in several, or more than one), and can you a share a memorable experience associated with a previous NASGA festival (whether sentimental, humorous, ironic)?
This will be the first festival in which we are participating. We hope to come away with some wonderful memories that we might share next year.
NASGA: What are some of your other interests or hobbies? If you could learn another skill (does not need to be art related) what would it be?
Steve: Become a Captain and pilot a boat to journey around the world.
NASGA: Where can readers find out more about your craft or skill? Also, are readers welcome to contact you, and if so, what is the preferred method for them to reach you?
NASGA: What is your favorite beachcombing find?
We found a salt cellar, a stopper with a W engraved, a stopper that is smaller than a dime and a few whole bottles. Of course, any piece of red is a treasure.
NASGA: How have you helped strengthen and support the NASGA Mission?
We walk our local beaches and pick up trash others are leaving behind while always searching for sea glass. When out in our boat we see things floating in the bay and stop to retrieve them if possible. Sometimes these items are incorporated into crafts used in the other side of our business which deals with nautical designs. We feel that by upcycling we are doing our part to help protect our beaches, waterways and the marine eco-system.
NASGA: Thank you , we hope you enjoy your first NASGA Sea Glass Festival in Ocean City, Maryland, August 29th and 30th!