Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Silvered Ivory Stringer on black and opal glass

Hello friends!

I am excited to be writing my first post for Art Jewelry Elements. Today I wanted to share my discoveries about glass with you. While being inspired by my friend, Staci Smith and Karen Totten, I dove into some ideas on making my glass look more like stones and water. 

One of my favorite organic "glass tools" I like to use is, silvered Ivory. Silvered Ivory is Dark Ivory glass rolled in pure silver leaf and pulled into tiny "stringers" of glass for embellishing beads. Silvered Ivory stringer, or SIS, gives beads a gorgeous organic look to them.
Here is a simple set of spacers demonstrating the look of SIS. See the beaitful organic bands that line the bead? Dark Ivory glass on it's own "webbs" or "curdles" giving it a beautiful organic look. When you add silver not only does it react with the Ivory glass, but it reacts with the beads base as well! 

I am always excited to sit down at my lampwork table and create because I tend to learn new things every time I sit down. So what is it that I learned? 
First off, all glass is different. Each color has it's own chemical make up that may cause it to react differently with different glasses. In the photo you can see that I used SIS on a base of Tuxedo black. You will notice the pretty webbing, but if you look at the edges of the band of SIS you will see that it doesn't spread! Hmmm, how very curious!

I did the same band of SIS on a base of effetre Black and look at the different results! See how the band of SIS is very "webbed" and "frazzly". Cool huh?!

So how does this work with Opal glass? Well I was in a watery mood so I chose a wonderful selection of opal glasses from Creaiton is Messy. 
I chose some wonderful soft blues, sea foam greens, teal green, teal blue, and capri blue. You may recognize these beads from my latest Etsy shop update from this week ;)

I took the newest Limited Run glass, Moana for a test drive with my SIS to see how it looked. You will notice from the picture that when I used the SIS it did that pretty webbing, but it didn't spread like it does on the effetre black. Hmmm.... On the right you will see that I did get the glass to spread, just how I like! So how did I do it? Well I kinda manipulated the glass to do what I wanted. I used a band of regular Dark Ivory glass first. I melted in the Dark Ivory and let it spread onto the surface.  I then added a line of SIS, and let that melt into the surface on top of the Dark Ivory. VOILA! Just the look I wanted! 

BUT.... I did learn some things on the way.... 
Here you can see Kryptonite and the new Messy color, Poseidon.  If you look at Poseidon, you will notice that the glass struck to a hazy opaque. Dang! So how did that happen? From working with the glass I have learned that this tends to happen from "striking" the glass(heating and cooling the glass multiple times). Over heating will also give you the same results of struck glass! In working with these glasses several times  I have also noticed that my propane tank needs to have 5psi of pressure and my oxygen valve (I use an oxygen concentrator) needs to be opened all the way. It seems that a slight dip in propane pressure allows the glass to strike easily as well.

So how the heck do you keep the glass opaly? Well here is what I did. I made my bead like normal, but when I applied the Dark Ivory, I kept my bead hot(not letting it cool past an orange glow). I then applied and melted in the Dark Ivory, let it spread slightly, and then applied the SIS on top. This is one of those glass tricks that you have to have just the right amount of heat. 

Well I hope you have enjoyed learning about silvered ivory and how to design with it on glass.

Thanks for stopping by!

xo Genea


  1. WOW your teaching through mishaps is awesome. I love the look of all the beads. I am a huge fan of glassy girls!

  2. Love the organic beads, the more organic the better IMO. Bring on the Webs and Curdles!!!! Oh YA!! Welcome Genea!

  3. Thanks Kristi! I have really been enjoying taking a break from brights to work in the natural palette with these fun glasses :) Yeah-uh! I love the effects of the webs and curdles!

    Thanks Secret Squirrel! I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    xo Genea

  4. Thanks so much Kristin! Sometimes it's so helpful to show the mis-haps so if people get the same effects the understand what happened and how to correct it ;) Yay for glassy girls!

    xo Genea

  5. Very interesting results! I so rarely use SIS (mostly because I'm too lazy to pull stringers in advance) but love the look. Curdled is a great word for it. I'm always trying to use crunchy, which is wrong, but is the word that comes out of my mouth. lol! Thanks for sharing such interesting info. Gorgeous beads.


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