Friday, March 19, 2010

I Made Some Beads!

I've been spending the past few days in the studio, making beads and trying to get them to be even. I'm also trying to keep from switching from the left hand to the right hand (which is apparently a big bad no no). I've also been playing with frit, which is tiny crunched-up glass that can make pretty decorations. Ignore the bead release, and you can see:

I tried my hand at encasing these in light amethyst, too, and encasing is a skill all its own, I quickly discovered! I'll put that on the back burner for a while longer.

Today I went out and ooooh, Rick bought me some Moretti Alabaster. Let's try that.

BLAMMO! OK maybe not -- the stuff is either shocky or I was doing it wrong -- a huge chunk exploded off the bottom the minute I wafted it through the flame. That got bundled up and put back on the shelf for later.

(Picture from

Bottom line -- I'm getting out in the studio and trying. I don't have huge chunks of time right now but will next month, and I signed up for a class in August at the Philadelphia BeadFest, so that will help. I'm trying to stay positive, and trying to remember that for every spectacular bead artist I see, there was once a newbie.

Thanks for reading!


  1. Oh boy how exciting Lori. I know you're going to be fabulous. What gorgeous colors in your first beads!

  2. Wow! Nice work! I can't get the hang of good encasing....yours are WAY better than anything I can do!

    And why is switching hands a no-no? I do that all the time. if I didn't, I wouldn't be able to work at all from the carpal tunnel flare-ups.

    Nice job! :)

  3. Nice job! The Alabaster is known for being shocky ~ both people I have taken classes with told me to avoid it for now until I learn the feel of things more.

  4. I had my first day at the torch today!!! And, I have to thank you, indirectly, for that...I met Juliana Cannon through the Bead Soup Party. I hung out with her all day today and it was awesome!

  5. Those are pretty good newbie beads. I have glass chunks all around. Sometimes, when I think they are really shocky, I put them on top of my kiln to warm up. That helps with some of the shocky glasses. Good job, Lori!

  6. Very pretty - I really like the subtle coloration!

  7. Lori, these look so pretty! I am excited for you. Keep going and I am sure it will get easier. After my first lampwork class, I realized how much practice it must take to be consistent. I haven't been back because I am not sure I have the time and hubby won't let me get a torch at home. :-( So, I am eagerly watching your journey and wishing you best of luck. You are a great inspiration!!

  8. The beads look awesome! I am just now starting to get into frit and I LOVE IT! Keep going and before you know it you will be a pro :)

  9. Anytime I start anything new, I find myself thinking, "I can't wait until this learning curve part is over and I'm good at this!"

    I know you're going to be spectacular - looks great for a newbie!

  10. Lori
    WOW...your beads look round and perfect. :-) Seems like seeing these pretty beads should be just the motivation you need to go and that you CAN do this! And you'll be great at it (and using your own beads in your jewelry in no time).

  11. Lori;

    You are a natural. I didn't make beads that good until WA-A-Y later on. Also, IMHO alabaster is too difficult this early. I'm just now getting into it and opalino (another to wait on) after 6 years of lampworking.

    You go, girl!

  12. Gorgeous! listen to me: every time I remember how I used to wrap things around my beads I cringe and want to hide under the bed. That people even bought that and still think they were great pieces after all these years makes me wonder what do they smoke or drink.

    Those beads are beautiful and I love the colors, remember that the worst enemy of creativity is your self criticism. Speaking from experience here. Critique can be healthy, criticism is a death toll. Miss you and I hope all the email problems are solved soon on both sides. Love to you and my little boyfriend.

  13. Beads - Lori, these are beautiful! You need to make many are definitely a natural.

    Encasing - have you watched Laura Sparling's encasing tutorial? I found her methods and help invaluable. Encasing is one of my challenges...whenever I can get back to glass.

    Shocking glass - ahhh, I know what you mean! One of my fave colors (Nile Green) is one of the shockier colors I work with. If your hubby feels like another gift, a rod warmer should be added to your list. I haven't tried one of those yet. I read another method besides wafting on WMC that I've found works better for me in general, helps with shocky glass, and also helps with the wrist. She starts way, way at the coldest area of the flame (or beyond) and SLOWLY brings the rod down to the hot part. No wafting, less stress on the wrists, and I've found the bonus of it helping with reducing shocking (especially if you do it slow).

  14. Lori, what lovely beads! Great job!
    Bead Happy!

  15. Good for you, Lori! The color on your beads reminds me of your blog layout!

  16. Wow - those look pretty fabulous to me! I wish I could make things like that! Good for you for keeping trying :)


Thanks so much for commenting!