A while back I made some ultra-bumpy abstracts. I really liked these beads, but Page's customers didn't. So eventually they all sold, and because I didn't have anyone in particular nagging me to make more, the variation went into hibernation, though I always assumed that I would someday make more. And, to be frank and not at all humble, I'm absolutely thrilled with the way these beads came out. I think they're gorgeous. (Did I mention the part about not being humble?)
Extravagant Abstracts, round 2. Effetre, Vetrofond and Czech soda lime glass; thompson enamels; assorted frits; 22k gold leaf. approximately 12–16mm hole to hole. May 2006.
That day came when someone emailed me, specifically requesting bumpy-style abstracts. The posting date for the files featuring the first batch is 11may of 02 though it seems like only a few months (yeep, four years ago—how time flies!) which naturally meant I figured I'd be able to reproduce the beads without any difficulty.
But of course, there are always difficulties, not least of which was that a) the customer wanted slightly different (ok, totally and completely different) colorways than the ones I'd originally made and b) as I stated, I made the first batch out of odds and ends—now long gone, as I discovered when I went rootling around for the transparent colorless frit that gives these beads their rich texture.
Now, if I hadn't sat on my hands for two weeks already (more on that when I document the red beads) I could've just called up Arrow Springs and ordered some of this most basic of frits. Heck, I could've called ’em anyways, grit my teeth and paid for priority shipping. But nooooo. I called some local vendors. No dice. So I made some clear frit.
Really, I don't mind breathing cancer-causing glass dust and shortening my life thereby—if I did, I'd give up making this sort of bead. I don't even mind breathing said dust while making frit, if it's a frit I couldn't get any other way, such as frit made from striped cane, or even pure colors not offered. But to have to make frit out of clear! Let me be absolutely, Effetre 004 clear here: I had no-one—no-one at all in the whole wide world—to blame but myself.
So after sucking it up (literally and figuratively) and making the clear, I was finally ready to start making the beads. I already knew, from one abortive experiment, that red was gonna be a pain in the patootie, so I decided to start with green instead, because that's a very easy color for me to work with. And how I developed this will be the subject of the next post in this series. Blue/Purple and red follow.
See my newly created price sheet for prices, ordering info, etc.
post created, posted 16may06; link to green abstracts added 24may; links for blue and red added 14jun
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