For 18 years, Kecia Frevert has been doing stained glass as a hobby. Recently, she was inspired to create a piece to gift her bicyclist friend.
Frevert ventured to High Gear Cyclery to inquire about trashed bicycle parts, including wheels, forks, sprockets and more.
High Gear Owner Matt Brown was more than happy to supply otherwise unusable materials, including wheels with cracked rims or broken spokes.
“We’re always willing to help, because we always have lots of disposable bike parts that we recycle, as far as metal,” he said.
Those recyclables were much more to Frevert, who created her first piece with a broken bicycle wheel.
“Wheels are very, very difficult,” she said. “I didn’t expect them to be so hard.”
One of the difficulties is the gradually increased spacing between spokes and how it affects the soldering process. Since all pieces are designed to be viewed from either side, the soldering takes accuracy and finesse.
“I think it’s pretty amazing what she does,” Brown said. “She is very talented, and the glasswork and how it all came together just out of something that was going to go to recycling is pretty amazing.”
Since then, Frevert has continued upcycling bicycle materials to create many different types of stained glass works. After working within the boundaries of the materials, Frevert took a unique turn — integrating bicycle parts directly into the piece.
In one piece, the chainring functions as the sun emerging between two mountains. In another, the chainring is the base for a double-sided sunflower. With each new piece, Frevert aims to “go beyond the boundaries of the actual part.”
“I want it integrated into the piece, not added gratuitously,” she said.
High Gear will have a three-dimensional window display this week leading up to the Dirty Kanza on which the pieces will be displayed, allowing the sunlight to shine on the glass. They will be displayed until sold out.
Six years ago, Frevert was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease, limiting her ability to create stained glass pieces. The pieces on display, as well as all of her artwork, are limited in quantity, though Frevert is passionate about creating stained glass pieces when her tremors are not prohibitive.
This is also the first time Frevert has publicly displayed her work.
“I think there are going to be a lot of people very interested in this, especially when they see the stuff in person,” Brown said.
Not being a cyclist herself, Frevert said her art has allowed her to take part in the cycling community in her own unique way.
“This has enabled me to become integrated into the whole bicycling and Dirty Kanza culture that my friends are involved in,” she said.
Frevert said she is thankful that High Gear “found value in what I created.”
Her work will be on display at High Gear Cyclery, 520 Commercial St., throughout the week.