Wednesday, August 27, 2014

CiM 813: Cobblestone

 Cobblestone - nice colour for elephants. A nice warm shade of grey, tends to look different depending on the colours around it - see photos. The variability in the photos is not as evident in real life.

I think this would be a really nice colour in sculptural animals - like, elephants! Seals. Whales. Kittens.

Because ...

... all is vanity, all the way;
Twilight follows the brightest day,
And every cat in the twilight’s gray,
Every possible cat. 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

CiM 613 Gypsy

CiM's Gypsy is a dark, dark transparent purple, so dark, in fact, that the rod just looks black. And a bead made with it and nothing else also looks black. (Left-most bead)

But a dot on white reveals it's red-purple berry-juice nature, and the third bead from the left, Gypsy over clear, also shows it's wine-like nature.

Use as dots, in stringer, over clear, whereever you need a deep, intense colour that can stand to be diluted a lot.

Same three beads - strongly back lit.

Friday, August 08, 2014

CiM 614 Jellyfish (Colour Shift)

Meet CiM Jellyfish - a colour shift glass like the colour in commercial beads known as "Alexandrite" - and like the Effetre 081 Dark Lavender.

 This colour of glass looks blue in cool, fluorescent light, and mauve in warm light, like incandescent or sunlight.

This series of photos show the rather remarkable range of colours you will get as you move from one kind of lighting to another.

Pictured to the right, two self coloured beads and Jellyfish encased over white. 

 Quite remarkable, isn't it?

It can be something of a challenge to create with this glass, as you have to coordinate your colours for all types of lighting.

That said - I find it a really nice glass to work. Try it over silver foil sometime.
 This is Jellyfish over EDP (2 on the left) and EDP unencased.

 Those encased EDP beads again.

 Again, the EDP.
Colours that we see are caused by light of specific wavelengths being reflected from the object for us to see. This particular colour reflects light in some very narrow ranges of frequencies. As you move from warm light - with lots of orange in it, to cool light (more blue), there is less of the warm colours available to be reflected, and so the colour of the glass appears to "shift."

It's a neat piece of chemistry.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Effetre 420: Coral - Firecracker

Effetre 420 Coral - Firecracker variant.

Maybe someday I will understand why this colour - 420 - Coral - comes out different every time.

I am pleased to see that the sellers are giving it a subname - Firecracker - essentially labeling it as a batch. Because it's deeply annoying to fall in love with a colour, and then not be able to re-order it because - well - there is no way to talk about it. I mean, this is why we have Latin names for plants and things - so we can be certain we are talking about the same thing.

I doubt that this is THAT specific - but it's a step in the right direction. So if an orangey variation of coral that is super streaky and has almost an oriental carpet vibe to it is your cuppa tea - ask for Effetre 420 Coral - Firecracker. 
All four of the beads shown here are self-coloured - no other glass used. So you can see - it is really streaky.

Conversely, if you want a plain, even colour - this is not your glass. ;-)

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Goldstone stringer

 Goldstone stringer.

Here's the case for making your own, versus buying it premade.

Encasing with a colour.

These beads are a base of red, with goldstone stringer handmade with transparent red and clear stripes.

What a handsome effect, yes?

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Bead Recipe: Tidal Pools

I've always wanted to write a "Bead of the Month" column, but the reality is, I just couldn't jam another commitment into my schedule!

However, if I were to write a "Bead of the Month" column - this might be one of them.

I call this design "Tidal Pools" for the sandy texture and the rich blue pools.

Skill Level: Intrepid Beginner to Intermediate. The shape is unimportant, and can be asymmetrical and organic - good for beginners struggling with shape control.

Prerequisite: Know what a reduction flame is. Know how to make a twistie.

You will need

Glass Rods:
Effetre Light Ivory

Effetre Light Dark Sky Blue

Additional Supplies:
Goldstone frit, fairly small/fine
Silver foil
Some Twisties containing High Silver colours

Your favorite marver
Pair of mashers
Plus all the usual equipment to make beads (Mandrels, torch, kiln, glasses). I am presuming you already know how to make beads and know how to make them safely.

 I usually have left over twisties laying around - but if you don't and need to make some fresh - make some using high silver colours, such as Double Helix and TAG. You might alternate stripes of ivory and Terra, or Helios or Clio or Aura. (Avoid the black looking rods - or not, but the look will be quite different.)
Before turning on your torch, tear or cut your silver foil sheet in half or thirds. 

Start by making a base bead in ivory, make it longish, anywhere from 1 - 2 inches, as per your preferences and ability.

Build it up and shape it into a rough oval, footballish shape. The shape isn't too important to the bead, and you can go for an organic shape that will suit this better than an example of perfect Euclidean geometry.

Let it cool and stiffen a little, and apply silver foil to the right half of the bead. (Reverse for left handed flame workers.) Burnish it onto the glass (rub with the marver.)

Apply the flame to the foil and melt it in. While it is still hot and glowing, roll the side you just applied foil to in the gold stone frit. It's not necessary to apply it all the way up to the very edge of where the foil was - leave a buffer zone.

Apply your twistie to the edge, more or less, between the foiled and unfoiled half. Again, this doesn't need to be precise.

Melt the twistie in.

Add two or three large dots of the Light Dark sky blue, one on the unfoiled end of the bead, next to the twistie, and the other on the other side of the twistie, on the opposite side of the bead.

Melt these in partially - flattening them with a marver, but leaving them still raised.

Apply a large dollop of clear directly onto the Light Sky Blue, and marver to the edge of the dot. Then continue to melt them in.

Once the dots are melted in, get the bead evenly heated and ready to mash. If a nice piece of pattern has developed that you can see, you may wish to feature this on the front of the bead, but as a general rule, choose to mash so that the Light Sky Blue dots come out on the sides, not smack in the middle of the front and back.

Mash the bead, tweak the shape if necessary, and firepolish out the chill marks. Turn the flame down to a reducing flame and reduce to bring up the metallics in the twistie. Kiln and anneal as usual.


The layer of clear is what keeps the Light Dark Sky Blue bright - without it, it will reduce and react.

Correction: Dark Sky Blue.

The clear makes the blue look lighter, hence my memory error. Light Sky Blue comes out too light.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

I'm not dead.

I know, I'm sorry - I went from regular posts to - Kablooie. Nothing. Sorry about that.

I've been occupied the last month with a lot of dog stuff, and just falling down exhausted at the end of the day. And there's another week of it to come too.

Hopefully - then I can resume some of the backlog.

I've barely been on the torch - I feel rusty when I sit down. How the heck does this work again?

Anyway - I did get in a few hours the other night. This flame headed dude emerged at the end of the evening.

Cheers all!