Monday, June 27, 2011

Effetre 730 - Chocolate Noir - New Batch

Effetre 730 - Chocolate Noir, or Choco-Lotta Noir - depending on where you get it. I've reviewed this in the past - it was a dark, streaky, slate grey. Rather handsome, actually.

This batch is really thin rods - almost stringer.

It seems darker once worked, and less streaky too. The brownish cast to it is more pronounced too.

If you loved the old version - this restock may not do it for you. But as a dark brownish grey - it might be just what you are looking for - for organic beads, or animal sculptures.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Bullseye 1215 Striking Light Pink

Well - isn't this a yummy pink? I was testing this looking for a lovely cranberry pink glass - and as the beads are a single colour, switching to a different COE (Bullseye is 90 COE) was an option.

Here they are again, with a light background.

The unworked rods are vastly different in colour, a pale transparent blue - but striking is a no-brainer. They just struck when I worked them - so no big deal.

Last time I worked with Bullseye - I remember it being really stiff - but this time, I didn't notice that. Mind you - might be the hotter torch! ;-)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

TAG Fire Lotus on Red

Taking a suggestion from one of the comments on my post on Fire Lotus - I tried Fire Lotus over red. Not sure which red this was - Eff 436 maybe.

Got some definitely interesting results.

This was a base of red, Fire Lotus in the centre, a stringer of Belladonna Purplescent on each side. melted in, raked side to side, melted back in, and mashed with the Truly Parallel Mashers - using the lentil cavities.

Finally - it was reduced in a Dragon's Breath flame. The reduction was for the benefit of the Purplescent, not the Fire Lotus.

I am quite intriqued by the greenish area in the centre, that appears to have sunk in.

This is the other side - and the effect is even more striking. Interesting, eh?
Also intriguing is the strong fuchsia and red blush at the side of the bead, where the heat action was different (not firepolished, for one.)

This shot shows the reduction on the purplescent.

Definitely some interesting stuff going on there.

I really do wish that the manufactures of these exotic glasses would publish/write what the bead looks like before it goes into the kiln, along with the results. That red/fuchsia was an ugly dark mark on the sides that I firepolished out, or was it?

Friday, June 24, 2011

Vetro 823 Mauvelous Odd Lot

Yawn. Less like Mauve and more like Mud. Well - actually - the streakiness is kind of interesting - it's sort of like a very dilute Violet.

From the left, Mauvelous with trails of CiM Fremen; centre and right, self-coloured spacers.

Yeah - maybe that streakiness is interesting after all. ;-)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Effetre 059 Mosaic Blue

If you love the swirly colours of Mosaic Green - you're just going to be disappointed in this. If, however, you are looking for a really deep, dark intense blue to pull stringers and make filigrana with, then this might be your blue.

It's a very dark blue - so dark, that it can read as black in low lighting. In order to show it off, you'll have to dilute it by layering it over clear or white or other light colours.

From the left, this is Mosaic Blue over ivory, a self-coloured bead, mashed, and a self-coloured spacer.

When you hold the self coloured beads up to a strong, incandescent light, they show as an intensely dark blue with a hint of violet. If you could manage to layer it over clear and get that effect - shards maybe - it would be awesome.

More experimenting needs to be done to make this glass really show well.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

New Glass - Belladonna - First Look

New line of boutique glass - love that term btw - Boutique Glass - says it all, I think - anyway - new line of specialty 104 glasses from Donna Milliron at Arrow Springs. There are 3 new glasses, Moody Blue, Purplescent, and Black Diamond. The first two are reducing, and the third is supposed to be a black that stays black but doesn't bleed.

First up - Moody Blue. This was a core of clear, encased with Moody Blue, and mashed with one of the fishbone mashers, then reduced in a Dragon's Breath flame. Impressively blue silver metallic, and while you can't tell from this photo, I did not manage to get the bead evenly encased - there are clear areas that have fumed from the silver (presumably) in the glass.

This was was Moody Blue and Purplescent, stringers (the glass comes as stringer) making a double serpentine on the surface of the bead. It's quite nice too.

This one is a clear core, lightly encased with just purplescent, and reduced in a dragon's breath flame. Not so dramatic - I think I must have blown this one.

This was Moody Blue over clear, but I burned through the mandrel and it dropped and lost shape. I did get to reduce it though, before tossing it in the kiln. Purdy shiny.

So - initial results look promising. Read here for more info about this exciting new glass!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

TAG Fire Lotus

I've been playing with TAG Fire Lotus - can't say I'm getting the stunning results that I see some others getting.

After 4-5 tries, I did manage to get this (front and back of the same bead.)

That's not too shabby. That's over a base of Effetre black.

The info I got on working it is:

deep heat, cool and strike very hot. Anneal Hot.

I tried it first over CiM Hades (an intense black) and that didn't work particularly well. By the time I had finished deep heating and hot striking the Fire Lotus, it had sunk into the softer Hades and all but disappeared.

These two spacers, Fire Lotus thinly encased over clear, show some promise.

This was a thin core of Fire Lotus and deeply encased. You can see (red arrow) the beginnings of a crack - which has spread to the entire length of the bead now. Whether that was the result of uneven heating from repeatedly striking, or not annealing hot enough, I can't say at this point. In other words, it might be my fault, not the glass's fault. ;-)

I will point out that it went into the kiln looking more sagey-blue-green than lavendar-topaz.

This rather dark and broody bead is a base of Hades, with trails of Fire Lotus and Ivory.

This is a base of Effetre black with Fire Lotus, the new Moody Blue and Purplescent. More on those in a bit.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Seeded 104 COE Tubing

Got my hands on some Seeded 104 tubing. Not quite sure what to make of this yet - or what to make with it.

It's about 5 - 5.5 mm across, with a 3 mm hole - making it a 1 mm thick walled tube - more or less. It is "seeded" with bubbles, and has a light, airy look to it.

So I did the obvious thing with it. I tried making a couple of beads. And here they are. The bubbles translated into a bubbly inside. Kinda cool.

It is really shocky, which I had heard. Not "explode" shocky, but the ends keep dropping off the rod before it's hot enough to do anything with.

I did try blowing - it is a tube, after all - but I was having trouble getting enough heat to get the glass moving. I guess I'll have to try pre-heating it.


Here's a pic of the tubing - so you know what it looks like preheating.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Effetre 025: Transparent Green Olive

Well - lookit this - filling in between 024 Dark Grass Green and 026 Light Teal - Transparent Olive Green.

And a rather attractive shade of lime green it is too. Not what I think of olive, but hey.

These two spacer are solid Olive.

And on the left, over white, and on the right, Olive over Light Ivory.

A nice spring green - bet it goes well with aqua!

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Fun Colour Combo/Reaction

Try this. Grab a copper-based opaque, i.e. turquoise, sky-blue (NOT periwinkle), petroleum green - anything that reactions with ivory.

Decorate it with some intense black, frit, trails, etc.

Reduce it, or use a slightly reducing flame for the entire bead. Make sure that you get the red popping up on the turquoise or green.

Now - does the red reduction crawl over to the intense black, and form red borders for you? I've been having a lot of fun with this little reaction.

This bead is Petroleum Green and Turquoise, plus intense black frit. The reaction happened by itself - I must have been working in a reduction flame.

Same bead, other side.
This little guy was just Pet. Green + Intense Black Frit. I deliberately reduced this at the end. The red seems to have collected in the middle of the black.

Let me know if this works for you too, or whatever variations you come up with.

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

CiM Ghee - Yet again

Yeah - by now you must be sick of hearing about this glass.

Did these at the studio where I teach. Set up is a little different, Natural Gas vs Propane, Tanked Oxygen vs Concentrator. Elderly kiln that leaks like a sieve and has mysterious, unknown annealing cycle that appears to work, so we don't mess with it. Still a Mid-Range torch, but with the tanked Oxy - much, much hotter. Three concentrators still can't match tanked oxygen. ;-)

However, I suspect the annealing cycle is much cooler - and see how much lighter these came out. I did these about an hour before the ramp down.

Interesting, eh? Let's say this glass kiln strikes - that's probably the easiest way to think of it. Hot temps mean darker colours.

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Effetre 206 Sunset

Such fun! Sunset is a streaky coral and light pink that just makes fun beads all by itself.

Look - lots and lots of happy orange beads!

This is the end of the cut rod, you can see the layers of colour.

And this one is encased in clear. Some of these streaky glasses don't care to be encased (i.e. they crack) - but so far - this one is holding up fine. So far.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Effetre 217: Green Mint

Effetre 217 Green Mint. Copper Green by any other name. It looks like Effetre 219 Copper Green - it behaves like it too.

On the right - self coloured - 217 Green Mint. On the left, base of Green Mint with Ivory dots in the centre, and EDP dots on the left and right.

On the left, plain spacer, Copper Green (Eff. 219) on the left half of the bead, the right half is 217 Green Mint. The dotted bead on the right is again, a bead of Copper Green on the left and a base of Green Mint on the right. EDP dots are on both sides.

The unworked rods look the same even - which was what got me to thinking about comparing them. Effetre 217 and 219. Seem pretty similar, and 217 is less expensive.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

CiM Ghee

CiM's Ghee has suddenly become something of a mystery glass for me. The melted butter glass has suddenly become chocolate and caramel.

Imagine my surprise when, instead of a translucent yellow - I got Dark Swiss Chocolate. (You can see the rods in the background.)

Well - maybe I'm working it too hot - it's been a while. Let's try cooler, on the Minor instead of the Mid-range.

Really? Not as dark, but wow - not what I expected either.

Back to the Mid-range. Let's try it with something else. Like some ivory.

Uh - still pretty dark.

Maybe it's a striking thing. Am I over striking it? This one went into the kiln with no reheating. Apparently - striking it isn't the issue.

Well - this is odd. Maybe I got a weird batch. Now we're onto the 2nd day of trying to figure this out.

This is from the same pack as the last batch. Note the one on the right end - that's pretty much the colour I expected. The others have retained their translucency, and are attractive enough in their own right.

So I opened a fresh pack. It cause it was a mis-labeled odd lot.

But the results are the same.

Oh, to heck with it. This little guy didn't go in the kiln at all. Et voila! Translucent melted butter yellow. So it's something to do with the annealing/kilning.

This one was a base of Ghee (from the old pack), rolled in silver foil, melted in, trails of ivory, raked.

This is a base of Ghee, (old pack) and encased.

And this is a base of dichro, encased in clear, dabs of Ghee, encased again, and trails of Ghee on top. I expected the Ghee on top to go dark brown and the dabs that where encased to stay yellow. It didn't work out that way.

When I finished for the day - I did not do my usual hold at 965 F - there was nothing large in the kiln. I just set it to ramp down in the usual way - with a hold at 800.

But I read on the CiM website that the annealing temperature does make a difference - and that the encased Ghee needs a higher temperature anneal. The encased Ghee spacer has, in fact, cracked since these experiments - although the one with the dichro is still fine - but has a very small proportion of Ghee in it.

I think I'm going to have to try a lower temperature anneal. My long, hot annealing - which I default to because of the Lauscha colours and clear that I use - are apparently not what this glass likes. Except if you are encasing it. Hmmm.