Boro Frit Stone Pendant
By Paula McDonough aka The Venerable Bead
This tutorial is a tribute to all the fine glass artists who have taught me along the way either in classes or in their generous informal sharing of techniques. It is a culmulative expression of my love for this medium. Take it and find your own voice
1 8mm rod of clear
1 6mm rod of clear
1 rod of either butterscotch, carmel, almond nuggest, silver sands or silver
strike 5 that is basically any silver based rod in a beige color
The mariner's promise frit blend and if you do not have that blend then you
can use emma's emerald or nessie's dowry. If you do not have any venerable
bead blends then make your own with some different greens and blues and
throw in some yellow
clear frit in small size (optional)
parallel mashers or you can use a marver and a graphite paddle
tungsten pick (it has got to be tungsten)
frit tray or you can use marble mold to hold the frit
1/8 inch mandrel
brass stump shaper
1. Make a butterscotch bead on your 1/8 inch mandrel which has been coated with bead relase. Roll it in The Mariner's Promise boro frit blend and melt smooth. encase in clear and pop the bead in the kiln leaving enough of the mandrel hanging out so that you will be able to grab it out without burning yourself. I use 12 inch mandrels.
2. Take a 8 mm clear rod and melt a ball on the end. Cover the ball with butterscotch by striping from the top of the ball down. completely cover the clear. Melt smooth.
3. Now get the ball of glass nice and hot and roll it in The mariners Promise frt blend covering the ball with frit. it may take a few times of reheating and rolling to get good coverage. Melt smooth. heat the ball back up and roll in clear frit (optional) and melt smooth.
4. Het the ball until it is hot and molten, flatten it with parallel mashers. If you do not have parallel mashers then use a marver and a graphite paddle
5. Heat the lollipop. Take your tungsten pick and get it hot and glowing. be careful not to put it directly into the flame but put it very close to the flame until it is bright red. Pierce the center of your lollipop with the tungsten pick. Keep the pick hotter than the glass or the pick will stick
. Do this until you have a hole big enough to fit your graphite reamer. It may take several times of reheating the tungsten pick and poking before you make your way through the lollipop. If your tungsten pick fumes onto your piece just burn the yellow fume off in the flame. Pleasee make sure you have excellent ventilation and wear a respirator if you have one. the tungsten is quite noxious and bad for you.
Now keep the glass hot and keep the graphite reamer out
of the flame. Work the hole until it is the size you like. Keep the hole hot and burn away any of the graphite that gets into the hole. keep spinning the graphite reamer as you work the hole
6. Now remove your bead bail from the kiln and attach it to the top of the lollipop by getting both the bead and the spot where you will attach it glowing hot. You want a hot seal. Bring the two together in the flame then remove them from the flame and pull up on your bead bail. Straighten it out before it sets. Now smooth out the chill marks around the seal in the flame.
7.Now you have the mandrel in one hand and the clear rod in the other. Using gradient heat , heat from the hole to the end with the clear rod and begin to pull into the desired shape. Pull off clear rod and then melt end into the arrow shape. Use brass stump shaper to make arrow. Now decorate the front of the pendant with dots or squiggles and pop into hot kiln.
anneal at 1050 for 1 hour