Whether the studio name was inspired by hand made t-shirts, the Sade album, or the simple fact that diamonds are used to cut glass, we might never know. However it’s put, DIAMOND LIFE STUDIO was founded in 2006 by artist ETHAN STERN, in Seattle, Washington with the soul purpose of creating a stronger culture around the craft of glass COLDWORKING.
For those who do not come from a background in glass, ‘coldworking’ is the process of cutting, carving, polishing or engraving glass when it is cold with various tools including abrasive grits, diamonds and stone wheels. Most tools used to coldwork glass are water fed to keep the glass cool so it doesn’t crack from the heat caused from friction, and to also keep the glass dust out of the air. Because of this, as a coldworker, you are immersed in water ALL DAY.
Enter the APRONS.
Prior to 2006, Ethan spent 2 years as the Artist in Residence at the APPALACHIAN CENTER FOR CRAFT, in Smithville, Tennessee. There he met friend and artist SEAN O’NEIL, who was a student at the Craft Center. Both Ethan and Sean spent the majority of their time creating their work in the Coldshop, outfitted in the standard coldworking gear which consists of a rubber apron, rubber boots, and of course safety glasses. The aprons they wore on a daily basis were made of a thin rubber, with a skinny strap to tie at their waist and another that tied around the back of their neck. After working long days in the shop, the biggest problem with the aprons was the strain on their necks from the neck strap, loose strap ends left hanging that would get caught in equipment or tangled in their tools, and lastly the rubber was so thin it would wear out too quickly from daily use.
After a long search for an apron that would fit their needs, the guys decided to make their own. From there, the aprons have evolved into what they are today. Other friends and fellow glass artists including SAM MCMILLEN and GRANITE CALIMPONG, have helped to develop and produce aprons along the way.
The S. ATLANTIC STREET APRON was born out of a need for pure function in the shop and designed by those who actually use them. Much care has gone into finding a sturdy vinyl that stands up to daily use, comfortable wide seatbelt style straps that cross in the back so there is no strain on your neck or loose ends left hanging. When you work a physical and demanding job all day, the last thing you need is your uniform to cause more stress on your body.
Diamond Life Studio operates out of Seattle, Washington locally producing Aprons with the goal of keeping people dry in comfort and style.