Friday, January 28, 2011

My thing with spacer beads

I cannot recall the last time I really made bright beads but I really love these.
My most favorite glass color of all times is dark ivory and I tend to put at least a little bit of it on nearly all the beads I make. But, as these are simple spacer beads, the rule is to make them as even and regular in size as possible and to use only one color :-)
I started making spacer beads only about three years ago...a funny thing as I guess that most lampworkers start out making spacers and then go on to larger beads...not me.
During the 5 first years of my lampworking career I did not make spacer beads....well I tried but then they turned out all different sizes and were wonky and to get an exact matching pair I had to make at least 6 or even 8 beads, so I gave up on that and went on to make my so muchloved organics.

But about three years ago I had a creative down, my bead muse had left me and I nearly gave up on lampworking. I was sitting in front of my torch and had absolutely no idea what beads to make. After this went on for a few weeks, I set me a goal to go at least one hour per day to my studio and make simple spacer beads, I was allowed only one color for at least 20 beads, and only spacers, no dots, no raking, no encasing, only plain simple beads.
After the first hundred I guess, they started to get really even, approximately the same size and my biggest achievement: no wonkiness! That is the hardest part to get right with spacers: that they are absolutely even on each side of the bead hole. Because there is so little glass involved you get no chance to marver it into place or use some tool to nudge the glass in one direction or the other: only heat control does the trick.
Since then I have kept the habit: as soon as I am out of ideas what kind of beads to make, I have to make one hour worth of spacers: it is really amazing how many new ideas come to mind when you are only allowed to make spacers ;-)

Thursday, January 27, 2011

New red beads

From time to time i love making red beads, maybe it is because Valentine's day is approaching fast...or maybe because I got new rods of my favorite red glass?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

My beadsoup blog party contribution

I am very excited to be part of the actual Bead Soup Party hosted by the wonderful and amazing artist Lori Anderson.
and this is a picture of the beads I sent.

My partner is Penny from Canada:
She has a great blog and makes beautiful jewelry.
I must confess that I asked Penny what kind of beads she would like to get and she made a choice among my lampwork beads. I have added a sterling silver butterfly clasp, some Hill Tribe
pendants and bead caps and one secret ingredient, not shown on this picture....

Friday, January 21, 2011

New wishing stone beads

Some new wishing stone beads. The one on the rigth side has already found a new home, the other 2 are going up on etsy tomorrow.
I will go on making more of them next week, I am out of silver foil...

Monday, January 17, 2011

The good thing about the flood

All these beads were found, cleaned and are ready to move over on etsy in the next few days!
After the water was gone from my studio, I took some time and cleaned and rearranged everything. First I thougth it might take me one evening but in fact it was the whole week!
It is intimidating how much stuff can be accumulated in nearly 8 years of lampworking:lots of unmarked glass rods, a huge pile of books, articles, bead pictures and tutorials that had to be rearranged and filed, some tools I absolutely had to have, they were used once or twice and now they are lying around in a dark corner.
And finally, tadaa!!! a large box filled with beads. I made them last year and they were intended for a show so I packed them away in order not to get tempted to use them for jewelry myself.
But then somehow I forgot about them and now they are back. Yesterday I spent the afternoon sorting them out and stringing a few into sets.
And tonight is the big night: the torch will be lit for the first time in a newly cleaned studio. Lets hope the bead fairy will be pleased with my work and grant me some good beads to be made :-)

Monday, January 10, 2011

A Valentine's Heart, recycled...

Still showing and listing "old" beads....after the cold came the flood and we had to move the concentrators and a few shelves out of the studio. It has stopped raining last night and the water level is slowly sinking, so I hope to be able to move back in my studio tonight.
After all the snow has gone I suddenly start to think "spring" again...although the most part of winter is still to come...

This bead today is made of a base of clear recycled glass from a mineral water bottle, decorated with 24K gold leaf.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

In Love with Multicolor Dark

These beads are really sparkling with color....I love all the wonderful effects Multicolor Dark can make. I admit I had to go through some rods producing jsut mud colors but now I found the right spot in the flame to make the colors pop!
This set will be on etsy a bit later today.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Back to listing beads

I am back to listing beads on etsy although they are all "old" ones made in 2010 from before the weather went bad...
The beads from these 2 sets are identical, except that those in the first picture were left shiny and the other ones have been etched. I like the etched ones better...

Monday, January 3, 2011

First bead of the new year!

Due to the really wintery weather situation lasting now for more than 3 weeks I had to stop making beads. It was simply to cold in my basement studio.
Yesterday was the first day I ventured into the cold, wearing a fleece jacket and boots...and I really managed to make a few beads, among these this one pictured above.
Hopefully the weather will become a little warmer in the next days, I am suffering from severe torch withdrawal symptoms ;-)