History

Luc and Sallie DuretteAfter 23 years of kaleidoscope design, Luc and Sallie Durette have embraced their place in the kaleidoscope community as masters of mixed media. Their kaleidoscope exteriors have evolved through various combinations of wood, antique and stained glass, hand painted glass, tapestry, hand painted silk, handmade papers, metals and acrylic lacquers. Equally dynamic, their interiors have evolved from stained glass and pressed flower wheels, to chambers showcasing objects as diverse as tumbling dried flowers, exotic, imported beads, exquisitely detailed flame–worked glass and brilliantly colored hand–coiled wires. Eminently successful in blending optical engineering and sculpted art into functional beauty, Luc and Sallie are always looking toward new horizons, new experiences, and new designs. From simple handheld scopes to sophisticated and complex table and floor standing models, their Luc and Sallie Durette kaleidoscope work is powerful and evocative.

Luc’s education in the sciences together with his woodworking and glass skills lends precision and innovation to their award–winning kaleidoscopes. Sallie contributes her painting, design and graphic arts skills to their work, and son Noah, who put in his appearance in 1995, adds the crown jewel to their joint venture. Noah began working with his mom and dad in the studio at age 6, drawing pictures on the shipping boxes for a quarter apiece. Now at age 15, Noah does much of the woodworking, chamber work and has had his hand in design ideas, as well. Luc and Sallie were recipients of the very first People’s Choice Award in 1993 for favorite kaleidoscope; in 1996 for most innovative kaleidoscope; and in 2004 for a second place award.

The Durettes are living and working in their favorite house to date – a 100 year–old 13–room farmhouse on 6 acres tucked behind huge old evergreens at the edge of Olympia, Washington. Their home and work environment blends the wilderness of the Pacific Northwest within close distance of their favorite Thai restaurants.