Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Pretty Things Cup of Bead Soup

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I've participated in Lori Anderson's Bead Soup Blog parties in the past so was honored when she contacted me asking if I'd be interested in providing beads for her Cup of Bead Soup. What fun! Of course I said YES! The hard decision was what to make. I tried several designs finally setting on the bead above. This bead is a complex one, using silver glass (meaning that it contains fine silver). The glass is very expensive, but so worth it! It creates such amazing colors that are ethereal in quality. The lentil bead has a silvered glass murrini on each side & interesting patterning. Check out Lori's blog for info for participating in this fun project.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Why is that pendant so expensive?

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This is borrowed from a fellow lampworker who posted on facebook in response to a question so many of us are asked every day. While most of my customers are wonderful and appreciative of the time, talent and cost of doing business for an artisan, there will always be those that ask the question, or THINK the question. This question really applies to any artist creating handmade art. The bead pictured is not the one in question. Just 1 that I'm particularly fond of. :) "Why is that pendant so expensive?" Well, let's see. I made it using an $800 torch, and then annealed it, so it will last as close to forever as possible, in an $800 kiln. I've been doing this for ten years, so that's hundreds of hours of practice and I've taken classes that cost hundreds of dollars. The tools I use cost money, and so does the glass, the gas, the oxygen and the clean-up. The pendant is set with sterling silver, which has gone up 500% since I started doing this. At $40, I promise you that pendant is a BARGAIN.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Cabs or Buttons?

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Can I just say...I love my customers! Especially when they contact me with custom orders. Sometimes the orders are for remakes of existing designs, but sometimes they prove to stretch my horizons. I was contacted by a customer who asked if I could make some small buttons for her. When she said she needed them to be 1/2" diameter, I had my doubts, but I hate to say no without trying. I had made other buttons like these, with glass shanks (sorry for the crappy pic), but the shank would've been too bulky for such tiny buttons. So I wound up making teeny tiny cabs freehand. I'll then glue on clear plastic shanks. Learn something new every day! :) These are the button/cabs awaiting their shanks. Which style do you prefer?