The way I create my fused glass pieces is sometimes a bit odd.
At times, I fuse a whole lot of pieces to fill up the kiln and then about half of them go into a box and I don’t look at them again until a couple of week or months later, depending how much time I have.
It mixes things up a little bit and a lot of times I totally forget about the pieces in the box and it’s fun to rummage through it and rediscover them.
So, I rediscovered one piece this way and it’s sending me a bit of a mixed message.
It’s a large piece because I intended it to be cold worked so that it has distinct edges and a perfect rectangular form.
I make a lot of pendants because pendants are an easy piece of jewelry to wear and because a lot of my designs have a vertical tendency. Brooches, on the other hand, have a more horizontal tendency in my opinion and somehow that doesn’t come natural to me.
This piece, however, could really be both, a pendant or a brooch and I have trouble deciding.
So, what do you think: vertical pendant like in the first photo or horizontal brooch like in the second photo?
Which one is it?
Once again, I have successfully managed to avoid making any pendants this week.
My selection on brooches or pins was getting pretty low and so I concentrated on making a few of them with a bit of a new look. They are almost a combination of brooch and donut pendant since they all have a hole.
My favorite one out of the bunch is the green one. I am very much taken with the combination of a deeper olive and the bright spring green. By itself, the spring green is almost obnoxious but when combined with the more settled colors it adds something fresh and cheery to the whole thing.
I just posted my first video on YouTube. It presents a number of my fused glass jewelry pieces but I’m having trouble finding music that really fits and goes with the video. So if you have any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate it!
I start out with sheets of art glass in different colors and transparencies. Depending on the design I have in mind, I cut the glass, arrange it together and stack it to at least 3 layers high. If my design calls for any metal inclusions, they will be shaped and hammered and then wedged in between the layers of glass.
Now comes the first firing. The piece goes into the kiln at a temperature between 1460 and 1500 °F. It takes many hours until the glass pieces can be removed at room temperature because the slow and controlled cooling of glass throughout certain temperature ranges (called annealing) cannot be hastened. If cooled too rapidly, especially at around the 960 °F mark, the glass could become more brittle and possibly crack.
After the initial firing, I inspect the overall shape of the piece. I usually fine tune it by grinding to correct the shape. I use either my grinder or the lapidary wheel. Grinding will turn the glass “cloudy” and the edges squared and that can be corrected by re-firing the piece. So, off it goes into the kiln again. This time the temperature does not have to be as high since I am only trying to round the now squared edges and turn the glass back to clear, but all the rules for annealing apply with every firing.
After cooling, I drill the hole that will accommodate the sterling silver wire so the piece can be hung from a chain. Drilling leaves the edges of the hole rough and cloudy again. So, into the kiln for a third firing. This last firing is done at the lowest temperature of around 1250 °F because the hole I drilled is very small and I don’t want it to close back up.
So what do you think?
Please voice your opinion with a comment or drop me line. I am very interested in what you have to say!
Wow, my first post!
Let me start by introducing my original line of abstract, contemporary fused glass jewelry.
I start out with Bullseye art glass.
My main focus is the colors. I spend probably too much time just holding different color combinations together until one appeals to me.
Secondly, I create areas of both transparency and opacity in one piece of glass. It adds another point of interest and gives much more of a three-dimensional effect.
Then, a simple loop of fine silver (99.9% pure silver) is hammered and added to the design. It creates a focal point and a direction to the piece and, especially on the darker glass, provides a fantastic splash of contrast.
The outcome is a straightforward, modern and bold look that goes great with sleek, eligant dresses or , like in my case, with jeans and sweat/teashirts. Personally, I like to wear the pendants on a very short chain or black cord. But to highlight certain female features, a longer chain might be in order.