Mallory Lemon follows in the family footsteps with original designs
by Kumari Campbell
Mallory Lemon is a Charlottetown teen who has never experienced the common teenage affliction of boredom. You could say she is fortunate to have a hobby that has turned into a part-time job, which in turn has opened a door to a vast new world for Mallory.
The daughter of stained glass artist Debra Lemon, Mallory began experimenting with the art form as a little girl. She was allowed to make simple designs, piece together the requisite glass, and apply foil edging to it. But the potentially dangerous tasks of cutting glass and applying solder were Mom’s territory. Then four years ago she became more seriously interested in the craft and decided she would apprentice with her mother. For the past two years Mallory has been working at her mother’s shop, Lemon Peel, in the University Plaza, whenever she’s not at school.
Surrounded by a variety of beautifully-crafted stained glass pieces in the shop, Mallory’s smile radiates joie de vivre. “I feel so lucky,” she says, “My friends all tell me how lucky I am that I can come to work here every day after school and make all these wonderful pieces, when they have to go to boring jobs.” Apparently these sentiments aren’t hers alone. Says Debra, “I am so grateful and feel so fortunate to have Mallory working with me. It is great working here with her, and so much fun to do projects together.” She explains that their first major collaboration was a window for the luxury house in Stratford that was the prize in a recent lottery. Then she helplessly slips into her ‘Proud Mom’ voice, and announces with obvious excitement, “Mallory recently had some thrilling news. She was juried by the PEI Crafts Council and just found out that she has been accepted to attend the Christmas Craft Show.”
That’s when you realize that luck has little to do with Mallory’s success. In fact, it is all about diligence, perseverance, commitment, talent and endless hard work. While Mallory smiles bashfully, Debra recalls that, “She almost turned herself inside out during the summer, working on her jury pieces, trying to make them as perfect as she could.” All of Mallory’s stained glass pieces are executed from her own original designs. Many of them are quite intricate, requiring deft workmanship and precision when soldering the pieces together.
Mallory beams when she recalls the summer day in 2003 when actor Beau Bridges (on PEI to film The Ballad of Jack and Rose) “…just walked into the store and bought this piece that I had just finished and put out on display.” Perhaps some day Beau Bridges will be showing off the piece on his wall that was a fortuitous early find of celebrated stained glass artist Mallory Lemon.