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Cake and Necklaces: Better with Layers

Cake and Necklaces: Better with Layers One of the biggest trends in jewelry for 2011 is layering. Layering necklaces appears chic without looking stuffy. The key to pulling off this look is combining different textures and lengths. Gone are the days of never mixing gold and silver. Dig through your jewelry box for charms, chains and forgotten items, and wear them together for a fresh look. Necklaces in different metal finishes, a string of pearls, and a brightly colored cabochon make an elegant statement on a plain white t-shirt or LBD. In 2008, we saw this layered look emerge on runways the world over, but it was a subtler approach (perhaps pairing a shorter gold chain with a longer one.) Now, anything goes. To keep it from getting tacky, (you dont want to end up looking like your crazy aunt Marge) follow these tips The chains should be of varying lengths and staggered. Try mixing metals

What is Tinning?

What is Tinning? In my reading I keep seeing mentions of tinning. What is it, and how do I do it? Tinning is the term used to describe the action of putting a thin coat of solder over something else, for instance copper foil, a brass vase cap, or a soldering iron tip. One reason may be to protect the metal from the air, which is usually in reference to a soldering iron tip. The other purpose may be to color the metal underneath, which we’ll address here. You may have seen it suggested that you tin all exposed copper foil on the surface of a panel before running a solder bead. (You will need to apply flux before tinning and again before running the bead.) Some people feel that this allows them to run the final bead more easily because all of the foil edges are already covered. Other people prefer to

Regular Solder vs. Lead-Free Solder

Regular Solder vs. Lead-Free Solder I have some questions about Lead-Free Solder. Does it tarnish over time? Can you use patina on it? Does it flow like regular solder? Is it better than regular solder? We are sure that you arent the only one with these questions. Lets start with the question of whether or not its better than regular solder. Since the harm from lead is caused by ingestion, any project that will come in contact with food or food containers should be made with lead-free solder. In addition, anything that is handled, like jewelry or kaleidoscopes, should be made with lead-free solder. Hands have a terrible habit of making it into the mouth before they get washed. So, yes it is better than regular solder in these situations. As far as working with solder, you should be diligent about cleaning your hands after touching any solder. Dont eat, drink, smoke, or do anything

Household Items You Can Use As Tools

Household Items You Can Use As Tools From our Facebook fans, here are a few household items that can be used as tools in art glass creation. Some great ideas here. Hairspray for gluing (the non-aerosol kind, the cheaper, the better. ) Olive oil for your glass cutter The spoony straw from a slush puppie for pouring small amounts of frit Butter knives for bead making Chinese take out containers for storing smaller pieces of fusable glass. They are rectangular and stack well with a clear lid. Also, the soup containers to store frit (each size of frit in its own container stacked within the others of like color and only the top one needs a lid, and they are clear) Glass yogurt pots for storing frit and other bits Plastic containers that tubs of crystal light comes in for storing smaller pieces of glass. I also save the tubs for mixing glue/water, frit and water, paint,

Fused Stained Glass Pendant

Fused Stained Glass Pendant Sometimes necessity is the mother of invention, and sometimes invention comes when you have nothing to lose. Early in my career, I had three metal-clay-and-fused-glass pendants fail in a single day. The glass cabochons simply shattered and fell away from the silver after the pieces were fired because I had neglected to cut an expansion hole underneath the cabochons. Augghh. Lesson learned. But now I was left with three ugly pieces of silver, each with small pieces of glass permanently fused into bizarre locations on the surfacea loss I could not afford. Weeks later, after tryingunsuccessfully to remove the glass, I decided to try fusing glass in patterns onto the surface of the pendants. The results were surprising, and the Stained Glass process was born This technique begins with any fired metal clay with a flat surface. Small shards of fusible glass are then attached to the silver. After

Plans for 2011 Glass Cruise Underway

Plans for 2011 Glass Cruise Underway Who says that learning cant be fun? The Kay Bain Weiner Foundation, which is dedicated to sharing information about glass art, recently proved that its certainly possible when it sponsored a fun and successful cruise to the western Caribbean to help support its educational goals. Glass Enthusiasts Coming Together On January 10, 2010, the KBW Foundation sponsored a cruise on Celebrity Solstice that set sail for the western Caribbean. This was the Foundations first glass art conference cruise. There were over 148 glass enthusiasts on boardbeginners to experts from Alaska to Florida, from California to New Hampshire to Israelto participate in this inaugural event. Workshops, lectures, and demonstrations devoted to the various types of glass art, the business of glass, and the beauty of glass made up a large part of the experience. The theme of the event, Accelerate Your Creativity, rang true for all of the attendees as

Bullseye Reactive Glass Presentation

Bullseye Reactive Glass Presentation Amy Ferber from Bullseye Glass visited Delphi last week, and the Reactions were fantastic. She was here to give a free presentation about using Bullseye Reactive Glass. The two hour interactive presentation included a video, and a chance to look at samples of reactions that were created using a variety of techniques and different materials and what class would be complete without a pop quiz? Attendees were asked to review the samples and identify what was used to make them. Everyone had a fantastic time. After the presentations I was able to sit down with Amy for a few minutes and talk. Here are a few of the questions I managed to sneak into her whirlwind vist Q What is the COE of Bullseye? A Although many people like to categorize glass neatly by a COE number, compatibility is actually more complex than that. Bullseye kiln glass is around

National Book Lover's Day Gives Me an Excuse to Celebrate

National Book Lover's Day Gives Me an Excuse to Celebrate National Book Lovers Day is a lesser known holiday - much to my disappointment. Its celebrated on August 9th every year. I love books. I love books so much that in my house, every day is Book Lovers Day. Im hoping youll join me in celebrating for this one day at least though. A book is a gift you can open again and again. Garrison Keillor A home without books is like a room without windows. Horace Mann Books have always held a special place in my heart. They open up a world of new possibilities to me. Each time I come back to a book, I bring fresh experiences and perspective to it, which lets me take something new away from it. Art books are no different. In addition to the bones of the process, the invaluable instruction that they present, they offer an opportunity to dream and create.