Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Lampwork beads - my first attempt!

I have always loved colorful beads.   I am particularly fascinated by the beauty of lampwork beads, beads made by hand in the flame of a hot torch.  And I've wanted to learn to make them for quite some time now.  So yesterday I spent the day taking an introductory lampwork class at the wonderful Adirondack Folk School in Lake Luzerne NY.  Here's what I made.
I was very proud that my beads mostly turned out pretty round, and that some of them are somewhat attractive!  I wasn't particularly successful at making dots, so I melted my lumpy lopsided dots into the beads and swirled them a bit.
 I tried making a cube bead and a barrel bead (below), but they are pretty misshapen and overworked.
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 The bead on the right in the photo below is actually a root beer color.
 Below, my favorite bead.
 
Sorry the photos aren't better.  I have cropped them quite a bit.
 My colors are a little muddy, because I worked a little too close to the flame, but I don't think these are too bad for my very first efforts!

Two new photos - me at the torch:

15 comments:

  1. Hey that's really cool! I like the white one with orange swirls :)
    Elizabeth

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    1. Thanks! The color is a little off in the photo - it's more of an orangey-red color, but I like it too!

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  2. I took a workshop where we made a couple beads. I loved it so much I was very tempted to buy my own torch. Isn't it fun?

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    1. Yes, Marcia, I can see myself buying a torch too. I'm itching to make more beads, wishing there was an 'open torch night' or something like that so I could have more supervised practice. I wish I made 2 beads that matched somehow, to make into a pair of earrings.

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  4. They're beautiful Phyl! One of my colleagues makes these beads and she creates some beautiful jewelry with them! I have an earring/necklace set that she made that was my secret santa gift this past year! It's turquoise/orange/brown. I'm not much for necklaces lately but i wear the earrings alot! If you really like it get your own materials and keep creating! :)

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    1. Thanks! I'll probably be making something from some of them right away. As for setting myself up to make more, I'm sure I will, but just not right away. I've got some stuff ahead of it on my 'list' of things I have to do!

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  5. I see a whole new hobby in your future!!!

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    1. Christie, you are right! As if I don't have enough hobbies already.... I've been thinking about setting up the hot wax and doing my first authentic batiks in decades!

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  6. Yikes I just added the last two photos using the iPad app, and I can't adjust their size, which appears to be huge. When I'm on the laptop of PC later I'll fix it but I the meantime, sorry!

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  7. These are AMAZING! I wanna try! Although I'm almost certain I'd fry off my eyebrows with that torch. But it'd be worth it, those are beautiful!

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    1. Cassie, the amazing thing is, with the protective glasses, you don't see ANY of the orange ball of flame, just blue, and it is way less frightening looking because of that. Anyhow, I'm generally pretty klutzy and accident prone, so if I can do it, so could you. Thought I did have one hunk of glass go 'pop' in the flame and little shards flew all over! But it was great fun, and I would love to do it again.

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  8. Found you on pinterest and now I'm following. I did lamp beads probably 10 years ago...LOVED IT....but decided I din't need another expensive hobby. :( But man was it fun!!
    Denise

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    1. Welcome, Denise! Talk about expensive hobbies... Yesterday I returned to the same school and took an all-day class in precious metal clay. Loved it! But twice as expensive as the glass, I think. I'll be sharing in a. Post okay or tomorrow.

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    2. Should have proofread what I wrote - I'll be sharing in a 'post today or tomorrow.' That's what I meant to say! ;)

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