Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Art Charms Part 2

I am excited about the art charm exchange I joined which has been hosted by Jennifer of Glassaddictions. Last week I gave you a sneak peak of the beads. Now I have the 10 beads made into charms. I mailed them off to Jennifer on Monday. 

I wanted a group photo of all the charms but in my excitement to get them in the mail, I forgot to take pictures of them before I attached them to my cards. I had to back track a little bit and attempted to take photos with them attached to the cards. 

I don't want to ruin it for the participants of this exchange so I won't show photos of all the charms until we have all received our charms. I will show you just one....I made all my charms different so no one knows exactly which one they will be getting. 

As an artist I love to participate in exchanges like this. It always stretches my artistic abilities. It helps me to think beyond my preferred colors and methods. We all have our favorite color palette and the colors for this exchange are not in my palette. What I have found is that these colors work beautifully together and I will be making more beads with this color theme. I enjoy how something so simple as an exchange between friends can open up a realm of new possibilities.

It is also tons of fun to look forward to receiving goodies in the mail. 

You can learn more about all 10 participants in this exchange by visiting their blogs.
Art Charm Exchange Participants:

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Art Charms Sneak Peek

One of the things I love about other lampworkers is their ability to share with each other. This can happen in a variety of ways; sharing techniques, general knowledge, working together in groups and one fun way is bead swaps. I think of the bead swaps as a way for grown ups to play. Recently I joined an Art Charm Swap hosted by a lampworking friend of mine, Jennifer of GlassAddictions.

Jen put out the word that she wanted to host an art charm swap. She had clearly defined guidelines to follow and three colors to use. If you are curious about the details you can read Jennifer's blog here. She choose three colors from the Pantone pallet, living coral, chocolate truffle and lagoon. 

I have ten beads made up and ready to be made into charms. I will give you just a sneak peek.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What is a Twistie?

A twistie is a lampworking term which means to literally twist different colors of glass together. Twisties are used to decorate glass beads.
There is more than one way to create a twistie. I have my preferred technique, which I am going to share with you.

In this case I am making a twistie of green colors to use as a vine for pumpkin beads.
You can find pumpkin beads for sale in my Ema K Designs Etsy Shop.

  I begin by gathering a ball of glass on the end of a rod. This is my primary color (green)

While making twisties a lampworker
uses the glass rod as a handle, we call this a punty.

I round the gather and flatten the end, preparing for the addition of the next color.
The next color I am using is black.

I heat the two colors together, round out the gather and flatten the end. I will continue this process until I have added my third and fourth colors, which are yellow and another shade of green.
After adding the fourth color I have to move my punties or handles. The punties must make contact with all four colors of glass in order for the twistie
to include all the colors.

I have four colors and my two handles. I am ready to heat the whole gather and begin twisting and pulling out the glass.


The result is a thin piece of glass, usually 2-5mm thick, which can be used as decorative elements in the beads I create.


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