Monday, August 31, 2009

Effetre 023 Mosaic Green

I love this colour - have for a loooong time. The unworked rods are quite variable - sometimes appearing to be black. In fact - that is how I found this glass in the first place. I grabbed a rod of black from the scrap bin and was then completely baffled as to why my beads came out with this green on them!

The colour you get is quite streaky and variable. You can see from this mandrel with 3 spacers that it can actually stay dark and looks almost transparent, or go a lighter, opaque streaky green the more you work it.

This funny shape on the right has a darker area - it went into the kiln with a very dark splotch on the side - it is not as dramatic as when it went into the kiln - but still visible.

These little cube-ish spacers show a nice streakiness.

The glass is very creamy and fun to work - it gets very soft, but not quite as sloppy as some of the opaques. It's just a lot of fun to use!

And - you can see from this final pic - as reactive as all get out. This beads is decorated with Turquoise, Ivory and - down at the far end - some Tuxedo Odd lot.

I wonder how it reacts w EDP? Hmmmmm.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Fine Silver Eyelets

And more experimenting with fine silver findings from Metal Clay Findings.

These are fine silver eyelets (although they are confusingly called jump rings on the packaging and their website.) I just got a spot on the side of the bead nice and hot and, holding the eyelet (which has a post on it) with a pair of pliers - pushed it into the hot glass.

You can see it got a little blobby from my over-heating the silver a little as I tried to make sure it was in there securely.

However, now that it is out of the kiln - it seems quite secure. This opens up some design possibilities from hanging tassels of beads off lampwork beads all sorts of other ideas. Hmmmmm.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Bullseye 0127: Nougat

Someone suggested to me that I try the much stiffer Bullseye soft glass - 90 COE - for my sculptural stuff. Seems reasonable - sez I - so I picked up a few colours and tried it.

This is a goddess bead (in case that wasn't obvious ;-) ) in 0127 Nougat. It is stiffer than the Effetre Ivory - in some places (like her back shoulder on her left) I didn't get as smooth a join as I would have liked - but that's probably more due to just getting used to the glass. There is also a little bit of pitting in some places. (On her hip, front right - you can just see it in the first picture.)

I have to admit that I don't like the colour as much as the Effetre or Vetro Ivories - it shows very little, if any, colour variation - but some might consider that a good thing. It is definitely stiffer. The jury is still out on the sculptural preference. It may just be that I am so used to the super soupy 104 COE ivory that this just seems odd.

I might see how this one etches up too.

Friday, August 28, 2009

More on the Metal Clay Findings

More experimenting with the fine silver stuff from Metal Clay Findings.

For this - I took one of the plain silver bands - about a size 10 - so fairly large - and jammed it on a newly dipped big hole mandrel - and let it dry for a couple of days. I then built this bead on top of it. It turned out pretty good - although it was some effort to get the bead release off the silver, and I did have to polish it after. I rather think it needs another good polish - maybe stepping back to a light sanding and re-polishing would be good.

I did build up the glass much too much to be actually wearable as a ring - but it did come out rather cool looking.

FYI - the glass is Effetre Nile Opalino plus silvered ivory - a colour combo that Jen intro'd me to a million years ago and I still like very much.

I do like these large hole beads I've been playing with. I just need to work out a killer application for them. ;-)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Nortel Bead Core Liner

Bead Core Liner - the Nortel Bead Core Liner is now shipping from your favourite glass supplier. Because I have been demo'ing and testing it - they asked me to put together a video of it. Please note that the damaged thumb in the video is not a result of glass (it was a boating thing.) ;-)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Effetre 281 Marmorin Light, Effetre 280 Marmorin

Marmorin Light (top mandrel) and Marmorin (bottom mandrel).

Marmorin Light, self coloured spacer and spacer dotted with ivory (reacts).

The Marmorin started as a transparent brown, but went opaque. On the left - it is dots on white, and on the right, dotted with ivory. The bigger spacer in the middle is partially brown, partially grey - one side was opaque and the other still transparent when it went into the kiln.

However, Reducing these produces some surprises.

This is a clear base, encased with Marmorin Light. The glass in the centre was still clear hot - while the ends were cooler. The center went red-bronze with red blue lustre.

This was a clear base, encased with Marmorin. Didn't get this one quite as hot as the last - which might be why the reduction is not quite as dramatic. The reduction on this is more of a dark chocolate with blue highlights.

Kewel, eh?

BTW, what is Marmorin? Well - marmorino is a traditional Venetian plaster decoration made from left-over crushed marble. Marmorin is also a Polish company that makes kitchen and bathroom sinks from a Marble composite.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Effetre 226 Alexandrite

Well - I was excited. The unworked rod was a translucent opal like the CiM moonstone colours - Cirrus and co. But - this glass just went opaque when worked. Pfuui.

I even worked one bead (the rather sloppy disk) cool and didn't melt it down into a spacer in order to see it if would stay translucent - and it was still partially cloudy when it went into the kiln. But, no such luck - it was fully opaque when it came out.

There is a strong colour change in this glass between warm (incandescent) light (pic on left) and cool (fluorescent) light (pic on right). Under a light bulb and in sunlight, it is a definite pale lavender, and in fluorescent lighting (even the good stuff - like an Ott light) - it is a pale blue.

In fact, this reminds me a lot of Effetre 221 Pastel Lavender - which is a colour change as well.

So I dug out some 221. The unworked rods are opaque pink in warm light, which the 226 is translucent pink when directly in warm light, but looks more bluish further away from direct lighting.

In cool, fluorescent lighting, the rods are both blue, but the 221 is paler.

This last pic is a bead made with 221 on left hand of the bead, and 226 on the right, with dots of 226 on the left and 221 on the right. When it went into the kiln - the right hand side was tranparent - and it looked pretty cool. Now - well - if you click on the image for the larger version - you might be able to see that they are dots on it.

I'd hazard to say that 226 and 221 are interchangeable.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Not new - Transparent Aqua on Ivory

This isn't particularly new - but if you are new to flameworking - maybe you haven't run across this yet.

This is a light ivory bead (Vetro, I believe). The stripes are black - the dots are turquoise and transparent aqua.

The blue dots are the opaque turquoise (notice the lovely grey line that is a reaction between the copper based turquoise glass and the sulfur based ivory glass.

The GREEN dots are transparent aqua. They also have that nice defining line - but appear to be completely green.

Kewel, eh?

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Effetre 209 Sea Green Pastel

A nice streaky opaque green - very like 216 Grass Green. Very like it. In fact - I don't think I can tell them apart.

Notice the bead on the bottom with the dots? (same bead on the right). That's a base bead of Sea Green with Grass Green dots. I like that they are delineated - green on green - but truly - the colour seems pretty darn close!

It does react strongly with the ivory, and tends to be streaky. I like streaky.

A nice colour - but I fail to see the point. Hopefully - it's the same price and then it won't really matter.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Vetro 948 Banana Cream

I thought I had blogged this one - but maybe I just tested it before I started blogging them.

This is the aptly named Banana Cream - a streaky yellow. The unworked rod is a light yellow, and interestingly - when it is hot - it is a lovely rose pink that shimmers (seriously!) - but it just goes back to being a mellow yellow when cool.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Is there an Ekho in here? Double Helix Ekho

New from Double Helix - Ekho. All those beads on the left (except the colour marker beads - which are my way of making sure that I know which is which when I take them out of the kiln) - ALL of them are Ekho. Pretty wild, eh?

Factory working notes say:
Ekho reduces and strikes! Retains a pearlescent luster under encasement and strikes during the beadmaking process. For best results; work hot, cool, reduce and encase

The unworked rod is a sort of opaque caramel - which usually indicates it wants a lot of heat.

From the left:

Bead appears virtually black. I superheated the glass (heated the snot out of it - heat to clear and drippy) - wound the bead and let it cool and kilned it. No striking or reducing - just to see what happens. Booooring.

2nd from left. Superheated and struck - but obviously not enough. In strong light, shows some greens and reds - but is still boring.

(this third pic is a close up of 3 and 4 from above)

3rd from left (or left in this picture) - superheated and reduced. Well - that was interesting and unexpected. Shiny metallic with hints of blue-green. Hmmm.

4th from left. (or right, in this picture) Superheat, strike, reduced - accidentally let it get too cool and it cracked. Healed it back up. Strike. Reduce, encase, strike. Yeah - like you're going to reproduce that series of events. But we have greens, some oilslick iridescence, swirly browns. Hmmm.

Superheated this one, and let cool - but not as much as usual. Usually - with this class - after superheating and letting it cool - I let it cool to the point at which it changes colour - usually goes a dark brown. For this one - I didn't wait that long. I then went ahead and encased it.

Now this one, on the right - is my flat out favourite - and unfortunately - didn't want to photograph well. I make a clear base bead, encased it in Ekho. Superheated it - mashed it, and firepolished it with a reduction flame. It is a dark topaz with a purple metallic lustre and some blue green streaks. It really is quite wonderful - here is another picture that shows the lustre well. A whole necklace of these would be awesome!

This blue green bead on the right started with a black base, superheat, mash, strike, reduce, encase. I just melted a big blob and swirled it on one side. Melt in the encasing, and strike again. It has retained a lot of metallic lustre and depth under the encasing.

Here's a couple more beads with Ekho. I didn't make notes on these but it shows the range of possible colours.

One thing I guarantee - you are not going to get bored working with this colour!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Effetre Coral(s)

Here comes a new batch of Effetre Corals - the foreman at the factory must just groan when he (she?) sees "Coral" come up on the mixing schedule. Something about 420 must make it particularly hard to reproduce - and in the spirit of that - here we have 4 new shades. Remember - these don't seem to be particularly re-producible - so if you find one you like - I suggest you buy a lot of it and hoard it. ;-) (For instance - I still have a couple of pounds of River Rock - and no - it's NOT for sale.) :-P

From left to right, as individual beads and combined in one long bead - we have:

Coral Sunburst Special: a rather carroty orange, a nice orange orange - which cools to be very close to the original rod colour. (Yellow marker bead - third mandrel from the rear))

Coral Lobster Special: (420-L) A redder orange - but still comfortably in the orange family of colours - it is also quite true to the rod colour after annealing. (Green marker bead - third mandrel from the front)

Coral La Mesa Special (420-LM) Still darker - and looking more like dull red in the rod, and slightly browner after working and annealing. The rod was a little shocky - but no where near on the order of the Spanish Leather (see yesterday's post). (Turquoise marker bead - second mandrel from the front)

Coral Martian Strata Special (420-MS) A red-brown colour - like a dark brick - this colour is quite streaky and shows cafe-au-lait streaks on a brownish background after working and annealing. Quite an appropriate name, actually. (Blue marker bead - front mandrel.)

Again - Sunburst - a nice bright orange. The bead on the far left is dotted with Ivory - which has bled like crazy.

Lobster - and the bead on the left is dotted with turquoise - which has reacted with the turquoise for a nice, crisp grey line.

La Mesa - and the bead on the left is dotted with white - which had retained it's edges considerable better than the ivory dots!

And the very streaky Martian Strata, with a nice periwinkle dotted bead on the left.

A nice happy set of oranges - the 4th is perhaps a little more interesting - with it's extreme streakiness. The four together as rods look like a nice range of colours - but after working - the Martian Strata looks a little like an outsider.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Effetre 423 Spanish Leather

Spanish Leather - nice looking colour, no? Nice rich red-brown - a nice organic bricky colour in the rod. But what about the finished bead - what does it look like after melting and annealing.

Don't know. Couldn't tell you. Because that stubby little end is what was left when I gave up trying to heat it to melt it.

Seriously. The whole d4mn rod turned itself into 1/2 inch chunks and frit. I could not melt it - it simple kept blowing up.

Maybe I got a bad rod - maybe not - but as I only got the one rod in the sample pack - I couldn't say. I'll get more and try again, but my take on this as it stands is pass on it. It's literally too shocky to work.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Effetre 591414 - Butternut

Bunch of new colours from Effetre (formerly known at Moretti). This is a mustarding looking rod that mellows out to a nice, streaky Butternut squash colour.

From the left - they are
  1. self coloured,
  2. encased in clear - note the colour changes when encased, and
  3. dotted with ivory - which bled like crazy, and turquoise - which it reacted with.
Nice organic colour - looks like it could be fun doing patterns and looking for different effect. I imagine that it reacts w the greens as well - would be fun to try with copper green.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

Northstar - SPC406 - DaVinci Double Amber Purple

Da Vinci Double Amber Purple - one of the 104 COE glasses from NorthStar. I've used this glass before, although, apparently - I haven't blogged it. My bad. Check out these two rods - dramatically different, no? One looks like a giant twistie, the other looks like streaky cane.

At the GAS (Glass Artists Society) conference in Corning, earlier this year, I attended a lecture by Jessie Kohl - a wizard of glass. Double Amber Purple is distinctive in the wide range of colours that you can get from it.

One of the takeaways I got from his presentation is that this glass works because of "incomplete mixing." Which is to say, that if this is carefully and fully blended, it will be harder to strike, and that if the glass is more like a muffin mix, a bit lumpy (at least, at the molecular level) then it does it's magic thing much better. I can't say for certain that this is what we are seeing in these rods - but they are very cool rods.

These two pics are the same bead - I seem to have a hard time getting the strike even. Guess I should start the rotation before I put the bead in the flame. This glass is in the snot/cool/strike class of striking glasses - which is to say:
  • Heat the snot out of it. Make a gather and get it transparent hot, drippy. Hard to control hot.
  • Wind it into a bead, and let it cool. No dancing back in and out of the flame, just let it cool.
  • When the glow has gone out of it, introduce it back into the flame to strike. Do this gently. I added heat to strike this bead three or four times.

That bead was made with the twistie rod - and this one was made the same way, but with the stripey rod. I rather fancy that this one struck more easily - but it's hard to really quantify that.

Again, same process. This one was marvered - and of course, the marvering changes the colour - because it dramatically speeds up the cooling process. Yes folks - that is just one colour of glass on that bead!

And, finally, this one was encased. Encasing changes the colour dramatically too, as it changes the speed of the heating and cooling as well. The colours have come out quite different - none of the intense blue, but overall, lighter. In this case, I superheated it, let it cool, struck it times two, and encased.

This was encased with the NorthStar Diamond Clear, btw.

This really is one of those glasses where you will get lots of different results, depending on what you do, and possibly have trouble replicating results. However - don't be afraid to get it really, really hot in the first step. It should look to be mostly clear.

Your mileage may vary, in other words. ;-) If at first you don't succeed, try again. One of the things that fascinates me is the variability of it.

Friday, August 07, 2009

CiM Maple, eh?

So, like, if Canada had a colour, eh? Like, what colour do you think that would be, eh? Do you think it, would be, like Maple-coloured, eh?

Well - this is CiM Maple, and maybe we should adopt this as the Canadian colour? This is a dark, transparent amber. You might characterize it as a smokey topaz colour. The bead on the left is over white.

Maple Syrple anyone?

I think I will try a horse bead with this - it's a perfect horsey colour!