Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Studio News: Kiwi Beadberry Giveaway
How to win: sign up to be a Follower (over on the left) and comment on this post. Your name will be entered into a drawing. The winner will be announced on Friday. (And if only one person comments...you win!)
About the beads: this is a really nice set of 18 (yes, eighteen) small beads. They range in size from 7-9mm by 4-5 mm. Kiwi is a delightful bright, green transparent. It fooled me the first time I used it because it's transparent sheathed in opaque. But that combo creates the above deliciously swirled green beadberries. There are enough to create a beautiful necklace and earrings...and if you space them just right you could stretch the beads into a bracelet as well!
Quality assurance: These are my first-rate beads! I quality check them to make sure they are well-balanced, have proper dimples, are round, and no smokey or scummed glass. I spin them, touch them, and look at them carefully. Any that don't past muster are sent to the seconds jar. I also guarantee my beads...if any don't pass your muster, I will fix it!
Since I have taken a six-month hiatus from the creation of beads, I am in the process of working through my glass rods and perfecting my basic techniques. I'm doing large spacer lots and getting to know the individual colors of glass. I'm going to start building up a reference library over on my website (not all links are working...it's a work in progress) with notations on the individual glass rods.
Lampwork setup: Minor dual fuel torch
Color: Kiwi - transparent green encased in an opaque green
Rod Size: my lot was 5mm rods, very slightly smaller than the majority of my other rods (6-7mm) which I think contributed to a quick melt
How the glass feels to me: Rods melted quickly (partly due to smaller rod size). I did not lose any glass due to thermal shock when heating the rods in the flame. It seemed easiest to create small beads rather than large beads. The glass didn't feel overly stiff or overly soft. I found it to be one of the easier rods to work with. I've been working with a number of colors and in relation to some of the transparent colors that are stiffer, it seemed to be as easy to work in the flame as a regular opaque.
I checked three of the glass suppliers I've used (I like all of them) and this color is currently sold out on LB Supplys, Arrow Springs, and Frantz Art Glass. I did a web search and found Flame Tree Glass located in Roswell, Georgia. They have Kiwi listed on their site and have about 1 lb left...just in case anyone fell in love with this color. (I haven't personally done business with Flame Tree Glass, but Maureen was very prompt about replying to my inquiry regarding the availability.)