janecameron: (Default)
[personal profile] janecameron
I thought I'd give you a bit more of an insight into how I go about making my beads...

Once you have made the beads, you have to put them straight in your vermiculite / cooling bubbles / kiln to make sure they don't crack by cooling down too fast. It's also tricky to take progress pictures when you're juggling molten glass, but I shall see what I can do about that for the future ...



Once they have cooled down to room temperature - naturally - you can get them out and take a look.



do NOT be tempted to pull them out while they're still warm and have "just one little teensy peek", as they WILL crack!

So, on to the pictures and how I made them ...



I started off by making these spotted ones, as I wanted to try out my new frit from Val Cox Frits. This was the "Gold Pink", over white.

I deliberately made one bead bigger than the other, as I have thoughts about stacking them to make a pendant.



This one has yet another application of the gold pink frit over white, but I then melted it in really well and added some pink millefiori slices with clear dots over the top. I love the window effect this has made, and will be experimenting more with this.

Unfortunately this bead cracked (lots of spidery little cracks) but I think it may have been a compatibility issue with the frit (otherwise known as me using too much of it!) - apparently with frit you are only supposed to use 5% of the weight of your bead as frit, and I definitely had more than that! I think the combination of the two additions was too much for it. Still, a lovely bead and I shall definitely be trying this technique again.



This is my happy owl. I like to think it's singing "Whooo Hoo!". It's the first owl I have ever made, and is BIG! It's a white base with goldstone ribbon and clear encasing, with millefiori eyes and "silver black" mouth.



I love the way that the goldstone has made "feathery" edges at the ends of the wings. Those two pieces of millefiori were the same size ... I need to refine my application technique - I think I pushed one a bit further in than the other one.

On the other hand, I appear to have got the hang of millefiori application - none on the floor and none exploded! Hurrah!

I also realised that the stainless steel tool I bought for doing "pricking" work through paper will be perfect as a very pointy glassworking tool for making tiny dot holes - I shall experiment with this another day!

Now they're off their mandrels, I'll be putting them in the kiln for about 12 hours to anneal, which evens out the stresses in the glass and makes them much less likely to crack.

I'll be back soon with another post, probably about a visit I made to an exhibition!
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janecameron

September 2015

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