Tag Archives: bead

Bead Collecting

I won a Sarah Hornik bead on ebay! I’ve been admiring her beads for the last couple of months and I decided that some small amount of collecting was an essential part of being a glass bead artist. A picture of the bead can be found here. I’m eagerly waiting its arrival from Tel Aviv. Whoo hoo!


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Landscape Bead

I made this bead on Tuesday and wore it to church on Wednesday. Nobody in bell choir seemed to notice, and there wasn’t a good time to bring attention to it. But, when I went in for Wednesday Night Supper, my mother wanted to look at it and Martha noticed the bead too. She got very excited. I took the necklace off so Martha could see it better and she held it against her pink sleeve to show it to another lady. Suddenly I was surrounded by old ladies looking to see what was going on, they thought there was something wrong with Martha’s arm. But all was explained, and I got quite a few compliments on the bead.

I showed my beads to a couple more people at the dinner table and got some very nice complements there too. The pastor’s wife had noticed it when it was around my neck – she asked if it was ceramic, and was very interested in how it was made. Turns out, she is into beading.

Today, I took the beads (I made a couple more yesterday) in to Curves. Amber, the woman who was working today, was very appreciative and complimentary.

So, all in all, I think this bead is a success. Now I’m going to make some more.

Oh! My oxygen concentrator came today! Whoo-hoo!

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Sometimes It’s The Little Things

I made these Sunday. I was so thrilled about the colors that I just made some simple beads to show off the glass. I’m going to make a necklace for my mother for Mother’s day. That’s still quite a ways off and it won’t be a surprise, but oh well. I think she’ll like it anyway, and this way she has some input into the design.

These beads were very tough to get off the mandrel. I don’t know if it’s the glass, or the stress created by the design or what, but they were a bear. I got a pretty bad blister on Monday trying to get the beads off the mandrels, and I still wasn’t able to get them all off. It wasn’t until yesterday night that I was able to get the last bead free.

It’s funny, because Monday started off well. I made my first Etsy sale, and I got out to Curves early. When I got back however, it was rough going trying to get my beads off the mandrels. And, I had to get them off in order to re-use the mandrels for more beads. By the time I removed as many as I could, and tended to my bleeding blister, I was hungry.

So, I ate lunch a little early and decided to mail off the earrings I sold on Etsy before I made more beads. By the time I finally started work on new beads, I was horribly uninspired. My finger hurt, my gas canister was running low, and I wasn’t having any fun – I didn’t have any creative ideas floating around in my head. I took a brief break to look at stationary online – it’s terribly expensive – and I saw a brown and green pattern that inspired me enough to make a couple of beads. But, my heart wasn’t into it.

Yesterday, on my way to Flame Tree Glass, I was still ambivalent about the whole melting glass thing. I wasn’t looking forward to the private lesson, and I was generally blah. I worried that my interest was declining, maybe I was declining. What I had so recently declared was my passion held little interest all of a sudden.

The lesson perked me up a bit. Lance obviously loves working with glass and that kind of enthusiasm is infectious. I enjoyed working on the Bobcat, and appreciated how quiet it was compared to the Hot Head. I learned some basic sculpting exercises and started some work on the human form. It was an all together good experience and I look forward to the next lesson. I won’t be able to do that more than once a month. It’s kind of expensive.

Last night, I was still feeling a little less than inspired about melting glass, but when I finally got that last bead off the mandrel, it was like a weight lifted. Suddenly I was excited again. I was looking forward to cleaning the bead and taking a picture of all the Satake beads together (as seen at the top of this post.) I was looking forward to my next session. Some times it’s the little things that do it for you, and that bead was the little thing weighing on my mind.

Today, I was able to push through some not very good beads to get a good working example of a new idea I had. I was enjoying the process again. My glass just looked more appealing to me. I still got a little tired of standing at the torch, but hopefully I’ll have a setup where I can sit soon and listen to music.  I think that will be ever so much better, and I’ll probably spend hours at the torch – I already do, but probably more hours. I hope.

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Satake Transparents

Well, this wasn’t the greatest week for bead making. Monday I only got an hour in because I had to go to the Doctor in Birmingham and run some errands for my mother. Thursday I went to Atlanta – Flame Tree Glass in Roswell, and dinner and a movie with a friend. Actually, it was take-out and a movie on demand, but still good stuff. Friday, I had some time to work, but it was Satake day.

Satake is softer than Effetre, which means that it melts at a lower temperature. It also doesn’t hold its shape as well. When I tried to make a square bead, it turned round again almost immediately when I returned it to the flame to polish it. The spiral shaped beads held their shape a little bit better. I have to say that I enjoyed working with the Satake though.

I think I may have promised my mother a necklace made of the Satake transparent spiral shaped beads. Now I just have to figure out how to make a necklace. I’ve never made a necklace before. Earrings sure, but not a necklace. It will be especially difficult because I have to order my materials online because there are no good beading/jewelry supply stores around here. Oh well, I’ll figure something out.

We went to Birmingham today to see the Metropolitan Opera production of Peter Grimes – live in HD. No local theaters are broadcasting it. We’ve been to most of the operas since they started broadcasting the operas in movie theaters. My mother is a bit of an opera fan, and I’ve been accompanying her. Being exposed to the opera has been quite enjoyable, but I don’t think I love it as much as my mother does.

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Flower Bead

I said I’d post this bead from March fourth, so I am. I haven’t made any flower beads in the last few days. I’ve been focusing on rounding out series of beads that I can sell on www.etsy.com . I’ve been playing with my glass too. I tried making a hollow bead and it came out horribly. I’ve been practicing bicones, and working on new designs.

On the DH Gaia front, I tried attaching the tin foil around the Hot Head with a metal binder clip, but it didn’t work too well. I need to work on that technique a little bit more.

I don’t think I’ve posted this yet, but my mother is talking seriously about getting me a new torch. I’m so looking forward to having a bigger, more powerful torch. A lot of things need to be worked out first, like where in the house I’m going to set it up, what we’re going to do about ventilation, what torch to buy, and so on. I have a lot of questions and it is very difficult to sort through all the information on the Internet. Well, it isn’t really information, more anecdotal really. But still, I should be getting a new torch in the next couple of months. I’m so excited!

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