Glass Art

11 years ago

Glass Art
Glass Art

With easily learned skills many people are making fused art glass jewelry at home.

Fused art glass jewelry has increased in popularity over recent years, fusing supplies, tools and classes have rapidly grown as more people have become aware of the beauty of fused glass art.

Fusing is done in an electrical warm glass fusing kiln where pieces of glass are heated until they soften and fuse together as one piece.

Glass is first cut to shape and arranged within the fusing kiln, the fusing temperature is then set and the pieces will fuse together as the kiln goes through its fusing and cooling cycle.

Glass may be simply fused side by side or stacked and fused or fused in other ways. Glass fusing molds can be used to produce lovely finished pieces.

To be able to fuse together and manipulate colored pieces of fusing glass in an electric kiln to your own personal design is extremely satisfying.

There’s nothing like the joy and sense of achievement on removing your first pieces out of your kiln.

You can produce art glass pendants, fused glass earrings, cuff bracelets, glass beads and many other fused glass jewelry items.

Fusible products are on the market from a number of makers in a large range of colors, textures and styles; also available are colored stringers, rods, shards,powders, and various grades of crushed glass referred to as frit.

The big range of supplies available allows you to mix and match colors and designs to your heart’s content.

Differences exist between glasses from some makers; which means some glasses can’t be fused together.

Glass expands and contracts at a particular rate, this is called the co-efficient of expansion (COE).

Glass is made to a certain COE, only products labelled as tested compatible when using the same COE number must be fused together.

Two of the most popular glasses are 90 COE or 96 Coe. COE 90 fuses with only another glass of the identical COE and not with COE 96.

The same applies to COE 96 it should only be fused with another piece of COE 96.

Fusing incompatible pieces will generally lead to the item cracking.

Special enamels, paints and decals made for fusing are also used to provide stylish and unique pieces. Many artists like to color on glass and then fire their creations inside of a kiln to produce stunning results.

Some artists like to include metal pieces in their designs. Copper, silver, sterling silver, gold, bronze and palladium are just among the metals used.

Each metal will react differently under heat and produce various colors when fused into glass giving you lovely finished products.

Among the newer materials is dichroic glass that is used in many handcrafted dichroic jewelry pieces and also in glass beads. The glass has vivid colors which change hues when viewed from different angles.

Dichroic glass is coated with a variety of metallic materials which result in a glass than when heated in a kiln produces brilliant and vivid colors.

Because the glass heats and cools at a different rate to the metallic coating no two pieces are exactly the same giving you uniquely fused dichroic jewelry items.

Dichroic glass jewelry is very fashionable as a result of its intense colors and is used for creating fused glass earrings, bracelets, beads, cabochons, rings, hair clips and pendants.

Glass classes can be found in many glass studios; art glass fusing books and DVD’s are also available to make it easier to get started. There’s a lot of excellent glass supply stores on the net.

If you choose to take up art glass fusing, which I hope you may, you will not be limited to only art glass jewelry, plates, coasters, bowls, plus Christmas and other ornaments are a few of the objects that may be made in the glass kiln.

Vicki Mimis has been making chain maille, fused art glass jewelry, beaded jewelry, and precious metal clay jewelry for a number of years. Visit her home jewelry making information site at http://www.jewelry-making-how-to.com

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