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SIDE STREETS: Valerie Marchand

November 5, 2015

Have you noticed the beautiful stained glass by Valerie Marchand in our Café/Bar? It’s part of SIDE STREETS a year-round series of hanging installations created by the talented and local artists of City of Craft. Check out this Q & A with Valerie and snag yourself one of her colourful glass feathers and succulent filled terrariums- available for sale until Sunday November 22nd, here at The Theatre Centre.

A person sitting in an armchair in the corner of the cafe, under a display of stained glass pieces suspended above.

Q: Why do you do what you do?

I’ve always been making something and this is what I am making right now.  I remember when my parents set up me and my sister’s first dedicated craft table (in the basement).  It was amazing. We could paint, paper mache, whatever we wanted.   So I have always had a desire and drive to make and have always been supported in it.  I came to stained glass through my father who did a lot of work in stained glass when I was young. So I grew up with it.  A few years ago I realized it was a medium I would like to try to make more contemporary.  My father passed away unexpectedly shortly after so that has been motivation to continue with the craft for sure.

Q: Favourite piece you’ve ever made?

A small pyramid cloche I made when I first was learning to solder.  It was sold but I think about it.  I waver on letting go or trying to get it back.

Valerie Marchand, The Theatre Centre

Q: Favourite tool that you use in your work?

They are all actually kinda awful! Almost everything I use has the potential to cut, stab or burn me.  I learned early to take breaks and to stay alert when working.

Q: What came first? Your love of plants or stained glass?

I would say plants.  5 year old me has a succulent named “Dolly Cactus” and I pulled leaves from her to propagate when she got too leggy.

Q: Succulents are HOT right now. What’s up with that?

I think they are popular for a few reasons.  They are small and fit almost anywhere with light, are inexpensive and are relativity easy to care for.  There are so many shapes and sizes available I think they speak to the collector in us.  Also they are super cute.

A studio table covered in a teal tablecloth, decorative branches, and succulent terrariums, with a stained glass piece hanging above
Valerie Marchand, The Theatre Centre

Q: What is your idea of the perfect fall day?

Bright, sunny and warm and doing something a little out of the ordinary,  Skipping class, leaving work early,… something.  You only have so much time left before the long cold winter.

Q: What next on the horizon for you?

I have quite a few sales with Acorn Studio coming up for November and December, Including City of Craft at The Theatre Centre.  Then in January 2016 my sister and I will be installing assemblage art work in a group show, Assembling New Realities at Quest Galley in Midland, Ontario.

Artist Valerie Marchand began working in the medium of stained glass a few years ago.  Valerie decided early on to contemporize the craft, and Acorn Studio was born shortly after.  She draws all of her own patterns and combines designs with aesthetic choices in colours that bring freshness to a traditional medium.  Under the guise of Acorn Studio, Valerie makes two-dimensional art pieces as well as three-dimensional pieces that can be used for display or as terrariums. Inspired by geometric patterns as well as organic and fluid shapes, she creates unique window hangs and geometric terrariums that feature succulent arrangements.

Check out her lovely work at