Thursday, March 25, 2010

March Updates

It's been a busy month here at Rowe Studios. We've been experimenting with making glass (cuff-style) bracelets with fusible and dichroic glass. Two of my students volunteered to be my "guinea pigs" to see how much time it would take and the amount of materials needed. We've decided that the best way to teach the glass would be in three 2-hour sessions. The cost would be $150.00 and would include the tuition, the materials, and 3 kiln firings. Tools, books, and supplies will be available for sale at our usual student discount. I tried to add photos here, but need to download again from the camera, so look for them later. This is a class that could be taught evenings or mornings, so let me know if you're interested.
We also did another class on making the dichroic glass pendants - and that was a great success. Rather than using the usual black as a base glass, we tried mint green and butterscotch ... really exciting to see new colors. 5 or 10 years ago, very few people were even familiar with dichroic glass, now it's available as raw material or in finished pieces in all kinds of stores and on the Internet. It's not cheap, but, boy, is it pretty. And since one uses only small pieces, a little goes a long way.
The next new project is learning to successfully do fused photo transfers. Not only is this technique great for making personal jewelry components (imagine a picture of a loved one on a pendant) but just about any picture or image can be scanned into a computer, printed onto special paper (using only certain printers) and then fused permanently into your glass. As I start experimenting, I'll add updates and photos to this blog.
In my free time, I've been doing some experimenting on the torch as well. Now, like everyone else, I don't have that much free time, but torchwork is my "me time". I've been trying all kinds of scrap sheet glass left over from stained glass panels, as well as some of the newer glass made specifically for beads. My latest experiment was with the Davardi glass from India - since I only had 3 colors to work with, I haven't been thrilled with the beads I've made so far, but the quality and workability as fine. I've also worked some more with the heavily silvered glass from Double Helix - I'm still learning how to manipulate heat and flame, but it sure is beautiful. I've been trying to make enough beads to make myself a 3-strand necklace, and have about 1 strand's worth done so far. I haven't made myself anything new in ages, so, if I ever get this done, I'll post a photo here.
And lastly, we got a glass order in today - small by our usual standards as there was only about 2000 pounds of glass. I should have everything marked and put out for sale by tomorrow or Saturday. There are sheets of Spectrum, Armstrong, Kokomo, and Wissmach, as well as a lot of Bullseye fusible in bright colors, black, and clear. We've also gotten in sheets of the new Wissmach COE90 glass to try - in black, white, and clear. I hope to test it soon with Bullseye just to make sure they're compatible. The price is good too. They're not making many colors yet, but if the tests work, I hope to order more in the future.
Come in for a visit - the hand rolled and blown antiques are still on the 40% off sale, so it's worth your time!


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home