Bead Of the Month

August 2021: Wig Wagging Around

Posted by Carol Ann Savage on

August 2021: Wig Wagging Around

For a number of weeks now I have been enjoying the simplicity of the wig wag and it’s design possibilities. Originally this was the name for a railroad crossing signal that swung back and forth to alert of an approaching train, an eye catching pattern in bright lights easily transferred to the glass world. There are a number of ways to create this vibrant colored piece of thin cane. I usually start with a rod of white glass and cover it with horizontal stripes of two or more colours, which creates a rainbow effect. I then heat one end and pull it down to a 2mm...

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July 2021: Making rose murrini

Posted by Carol Ann Savage on

July 2021: Making rose murrini

As we head into July I continue to enjoy the warm weather in my studio and the lush green view from the window. Seeing the delicate rose buds open in the garden I’m inspired to try to capture their form and colour in my glass work. A murrini a day.... keeps me busy, so let’s take a closer look at their construction.  Murrini first appeared in glass work in the Middle East more than 4000 years ago. These techniques were later revived on the island of Murano in the early 16th century. Millefiori, which means “a thousand pieces”  in Italian,...

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June 2021: Colourful Flower Murrini

Posted by Carol Ann Savage on

June 2021: Colourful Flower Murrini

As spring turns to summer my garden is bursting with new colours every day. These shades of pinks, blues, yellows and greens inspire me to create new flower murrini and to search for interesting colours for the base of the bead. This spring the glass company Creation is Messy (CiM) has offered us some lovely opalescent pinks, purples, blues, greens and yellows to try in our studios. Most of these rods of colour come in both a misty and a milky (more dense) version. Not only is it exciting to try the single new colours but it’s also fun to...

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May 2021: Reduction Glass Beads

Posted by Carol Ann Savage on

May 2021: Reduction Glass Beads

As a glass artist it is always exciting to expand ones color palate. I love to work with the reduction glasses produced by Double Helix Glassworks. Just a little bit of extra sparkle or luster can add interesting effects to almost any piece.  When I work on the torch it is most often set to produce what we call a neutral flame: a balanced equation of propane and oxygen. A second option is an oxidizing flame, which some glass colors prefer- this is a cooler heat, which often produces a hissing sound when used. A third choice is a reduction...

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April 2021: Red and Yellow Ribbon Marble

Posted by Carol Ann Savage on

April 2021: Red and Yellow Ribbon Marble

As I child I remember spring days as a time to draw circles and dig holes for our annual neighborhood marble games. The games ranged in complexity, but even the simplest games were worth keeping a few glass orbs at the ready in your pocket. These kinds of games have been played for hundreds of years, starting with clay marbles used in ancient Egypt. Round nuts and small stones were also popular precursors to the iconic glass pieces still used today. While the glass marbles in my pocket in the 1960s were mass produced, possibly in the USA, German hand...

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