Your Dichroic Questions Answered

How-To

What is dichroic glass?

Dichroic glass is regular glass, dressed up. It gets its sparkling metallic colors from a complex scientific process. Glass is placed in a special vacuum chamber, in which quartz crystal and metal oxides are then vaporized. The resulting mist settles onto the glass and forms a unique crystal structure that reflects and transmits light in amazing ways. Coatings by Sandberg put together this great video illustrating the dichroic process.

Where did dichroic glass come from?

Dichroic glass dates back to 4th century AD, but was more recently used by NASA for dichroic filters. Dichroic glass was discovered in the 1970s by the art glass community and is now a coveted design element due to its unique characteristics.

Why does dichroic glass change color?

The coatings applied to the surface of the glass create both transmitted color (which is seen when you look through the glass) and reflected color (which is seen when the glass is viewed at an angle). This is why the colors seem to shift and change.

How do I know what colors my Dichroic glass will be?

Remember dichro presents multiple colors and can be difficult to photograph clearly.

Photo credit: Artist Holly Sokol created this scattering of Dichroic Glass jewels. Each one separately hand etched, formed and fired in a kiln. After the jewels were made, they were ground, shaped and placed on clear glass, 24K Gold over glaze was hand-applied creating more detail and then re-fired at a lower temperature to retain texture to the glass and overall piece.

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Lindsey D.  •  September 14, 2011
I'm so happy that you described dichroic glass for everyone. Many people don't know the first thing about it except that it looks pretty! Thanks! Lindsey www.PreserveGlassStudio.com
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