Thursday, January 17, 2019

CiM 559 Cerulean and CiM 560 Cerulean Sparkle

Creation is Messy's new colour line-up includes some "Sparkle" colours - colours with aventurine added for some sparkle. This is new for them, and I was very excited to get my hands on it.

Sadly, however, someone appears to have been a little conservative adding the sparkly stuff, and it is pretty much invisible.


I apologize for the photos. My photobooth is currently buried and filled with other stuff as I renovate my office. Feel my pain.

Anyway ... it is a super pretty transparent aqua - just about an exact match for the colour of Windex.

 The picture below, the top mandrel (2 self-coloured spacers and colour over white) is the Cerulean Sparkle. And the bottom mandrel (over white and 2 self spacers), is the Cerulean.

 Order reversed, bit of an angle. I found the Cerulean to be a little gassy, giving me some bubbles, and I definitely found the Sparkle to be stiffer.
 Sparkle on the left, non- on the right.
 Plain for the top one, sparkle for the bottom one.

It's a super pretty colour, but sadly, the sparkle is invisible. :-(

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Val Cox Frit: Flora

Flora - new frit from Val Cox. This is a reduction frit, a mix of transparent green and aqua, but the green tends to overwhelm the aqua, especially when reduced.

The frit itself ... very pretty. 

These are both a base of clear (Effetre), layer of frit, layer of clear, another layer of frit. Not reduced, but worked in a very slight reduction flame.

 The barrel bead is a core of clear, a spiral (uneven) wrap of white, frit, reduce, spiral wrap of clear, so that some of the reduced is encased and some is not.
 Here, the top and bottom are made with a gather of clear dipped in frit, and the middle two are the same, but reduced.
 So, while if you look hard, you can see the influence of the aqua in little hints, the predominate effect is that of green, and with reduction, a sort of gold-y green.

It would make a nice base for something with flowers on top.

Monday, December 10, 2018

Pulling beads

When I learned to make beads, I was taught to pull them holding the mandrel with pair of pliers.
But this is much easier on the wrists.

A good quality vice, mounted on a sturdy table that is attached to the wall. 

  • open the vice, 
  • clamp the mandrel, close to the bead
  • twist the bead off
  • release the mandrel and repeat
The bead release ends up falling on the floor, and is easy to sweep up, but you could set up so there is a pan to catch the bits.

If you are pulling beads that might break or have rough edges, I suggest holding them with a cloth.

You can soak the beads in water if you want to keep the dust down. It might help lubricate stuck beads, but improving your technique and buying good bead release will probably help more.


Wednesday, December 05, 2018

Comparison: Double Helix Lotis vs Effetre Veiled Rubino

Effetre Veiled Rubino is a light version of Rubino, made lighter by mixing clear into the rod - you can see it if you look down the end of the rod. (Actually Rubino has a clear core too, as it is so dense, it does not show well by itself. Which is why, if you are trying to be frugal, and doing tiny little dots pulled from the center of the rod - they come out clear and won't strike, because you are pulling out clear glass. Anyhoo ... )

Comparing the colours of Double Helix's Lotis (a light version of Rhea) and Effetre's Veiled Rubino (a light version of Rubino) ... the Lotis is on the left - over dichro, with some clear in a dots (mostly to fill in the shape). Veiled Rubino is on the right, self-coloured spacers and a cube over dichro. The Lotis is lighter and pinker, the Rubino is more ruby and smidge more raspberry.

Both are pretty. Just different.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Double Helix Lotis

Double Helix Lotis - Double Helix calls it a "A pink version of Rhea. A lead free gold pink that plays well with silver colors and survives a reduction flame without discolorations."

Lotis was a nymph in Greek mythology, just in case you were questioning the spelling.

As I considered Rhea to be pink, I'm guessing that this is a lighter version of Rhea. I think the rods might be slightly less intensely coloured.

 I find that the colour shifts a little depending on the light source - hard to quantify.

These spacers, on the right, over white, are clearly and obviously pink. The self coloured spacers on the left are a lovely colour but less in the pink category and more in the ... claret? Sherry?

This is a big hole bead, base of white, silver foil* applied to half, encased Lotis.

Here, a base of clear (I think it was Zephyr), rolled in silver foil, burnished and encased in Lotis. You can see that I got a significant amount of fuming from the silver foil which has resulted in a lot of the glass/foil combo appearing to be gold.

This one was a base of Effetre clear, silver foil, and encased in Lotis. Again, significant fuming - but I was using the Nortel Arrow, which delivers significantly more heat for the amount of oxygen used than the Mid-Range, so it is possible that not using a clear base and working cooler might get you less of the gold effect.

Regardless - the gold is very pretty.

Lotis does, in fact, play well with silver foil. Anyone who has ever directly encased silver foil with Effetre Rubino Oro will be delighted with Lotis.   ;-)

*For those of you new to lampworking, you should know that all references to silver foil mean pure silver, 99.9%, not sterling silver, which will just go black in the flame as the copper in the sterling instantly reacts to the flame. It also does not mean the mylar films that are silver coloured that you might have considered purchasing from the local craft store.  They just burn.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

CiM Substitutions - Equivalent colours

Run out of a colour and you are stuck? Try this substitution list for a reasonable facsimile. Remember, the list works in both directions too - it all depends on what you have on hand.

CiM Substitutions List


Closest 104 compatible replacement
121 Garnet or 122 Maroon
123 Hemoglobin, 120 Ladybug, or Effetre transparent red
Peachy Keen
214 Nectar
216 Monarch or 217 Harvest
Stone Ground
313 Painted Hills or 312 Yellow Brick Road
Aloe Juice
463 Siren
435 Ogre
462 Chrysalis
Dirty Martini
440 Pistachio Ice Cream
461 Jelly Bean
461 Jelly Bean or 478 Oz
455 Troll, 464 Camouflage, 466 Amphibian
436 Leaf Men
456 Eel Grass for hue, 432 Loch Ness for density
Leaky Pen
527 Anchor
589 Zachary or 509 Poseidon
571 Cornflower, 542 Blue Arrow Frog, or 555 Sacre Bleu
Grumpy Bear
589 Zachary or Effetre dark periwinkle
Great Bluedini
534 Aegean for hue or 548 Barrier Reef for density
652 Count von Count, 626 Enchanted, or Effetre dark lavender
645 Heffalump
703 Butter Pecan
French Grey
816 Nimbus
Effetre intense black
Effetre clear
817 Foam or Effetre white
Effetre regular black
Effetre metallic black
Rose Quartz
904 Gelly's Sty or 910 Paris
Pink Champagne
911 Venus
909 Charlotte, 910 Paris or 908 Tutu

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Effetre 258 Tongue Pink

I have used Effetre 258 Tongue Pink in the past, and never been able to get any strike out of it at all.

The story goes, and this may be completely wrong - but what I heard was that Tongue Pink started as a contaminated batch of white, that some people liked, and so it was re-branded. Is it true? I don't know for sure.

Anyway - it finally occurred to me that it might do interesting things when worked in a dragon - due to the lengthy working time and repeated heatings and coolings. And worst case scenario - I had a white dragon.

And, in fact - it did strike - it came out quite nice.

For comparison, here is the Powder Pink dragon (on the right) with the Tongue Pink dragon (on the left). Really - you can't call either of them pink - the Tongue pink is a shaded vanilla and salmon, and the Powder Pink is a milk chocolate with cream - but if you ignore the disappointment at neither of them being actual pink - the colours are quite nice and useful in an earthtone palette.