9.23.2008

Blowing glass shards

Sharded glass beads are not only some of my favorite beads to look at and hold, but they're also some of my favorite beads to create.
First a small amount of glass is wound onto the end of a hollow mandrel or blowpipe. That wind of glass is then melted down and shaped into a small bubble of glass at the end of the mandrel. Air is blown into the opposite opening of the mandrel until the glass expands and is rounded out into an airy bubble. That bubble is then (mercilessly) broken into shards and saved for later use.
There are many and varied pictorial lessons available online should you want to view how this is done and one day I'll get busy and do my own..
I blew a shard from some of the beautiful Double Helix glass yesterday and applied it in the flame to a long cylinder bead. The result:
This one is being gifted to an old friend but there are a couple of sharded beads for purchase in my Etsy shop.

2 comments:

Deb said...

That is one gorgeous bead Deborah!

I'm still attempting to master blowing shards - but I'll get there....eventually.

I did get a rather nice effect with some very thin shards of Triton I had managed to blow a wee while back.

Sweetwater Designs said...

Thanks Deb..no master here either, some glass is easier than others. Silver plum is almost effortless, thats probably why you see so many SP shards. Thin are my favorite but I did have some chip off so I prefer to go a little heavier now just to be on the safe side.
Thanks for stopping in! ♥