Practicing with all my heart!

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day coming up shortly, I am preparing to perfect my heart in more ways than one!

Without making too much fuss in the designs, I stand at the torch looking into its hypnotic flame and let my imagination play!

By the 11th hour of 13 February, I can only pray my Valentine creation will be ready for adornment 🙂

Glass rods used to the right include: Anise White (#1208), Black (#1064), Medium Red (#1432), Dark Red (#1436) and Pastel White (#1204).

More play with stringers, twisties and raised glass

Here, a few more glass beads to accompany the last set. Some of these were wrapped onto my new thinner mandrels (1,6mm width), which make a nice alternative to my 2,0mm mandrels. This new size creates a smaller hole in the glass piece, which can make a difference when it comes to wiring up a pendant, bracelet, etc.

Glass rods used for beads to the left: Orange (#1422), Pastel White (#1204), Clear (#1004), Dark Red, Black, Translucent Orange (#1422) and Orange (#1412).

The results of these projects produced a lot of lampwork beads, some of which were put together ready for jewellery making, as shown below!

Finished set of lampwork beads, using the red-based beads from several projects

Playing with trapped air!

My gorgeous little Evenheat Kingpin kiln busy annealing glass on metal mandrels!

And here is the real workhorse of the atelier! After I’ve finished at the torch, my kiln spends several hours cooling down the glass pieces at a controlled rate (programmed beforehand for this type of glass, COE 104). This is known as annealing. and this process strengthens the glass by removing any ‘stress’ created in it when it was heated and melted.

When the kiln programme has finished (and the glass is at room temperature), I remove the mandrels and soak them in cold water for a few minutes. Of course, I am always very excited to see the results so I gently twist off the glass pieces and check them.

Then it’s time to coldwork them with my Dremel (to remove the bead release inside the holes) and voilĂ !

Originally published: Thursday, January 30th, 2014 at 01:46 in Atelier, Inspiration

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2 Responses to “More mandrels, more play”

  1. Coach Mike says:

    Cute! Those top two remind me of those fancy finishes you get on top of the cappucino froth in some cafés.

    I see that the bead repertoire is expanding fast with some new techniques. Very exciting!

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