As a rule, I tend not to post ‘intermediate’ projects on the website, and these beads were made for a series that's still in process as I write this. (In fact, the prior series isn't even completely documented yet...) But I decided my failures with them needed to be documented in and of themselves, to remind me of a problem.
These beads are relatively simple versions of the frit and powder pressed lentil florals that I've been making without problems for years. (Well, except their habit of cracking if allowed to get too cold.) I made the center bead, with two ivory-cream flowers, first, and it remains my favourite. Unfortunately, when I got it out of the kiln the following morning, it was cracked.
This typically happens when I'm too focused on doing the trailing and not enough on keeping the base bead warm. I was disappointed, but chalked it up to poor heat management skills. However, the following day, I discovered the other floral (all the way to the left) had also cracked.
At this point I was forced to conclude that my problems were not heat management, but incompatibility, probably from rolling the beads in white and cream Thompson enamels, casing them (a standard approach when the bead doesn't fill the press) and then rolling them in more thompson enamels. Well, rats. So far, the bead with the dichro has not cracked, despite the dichro (which is metallic deposits on glass)—presumably because the bead has only one layer of frit and powder—on the outside.
Now I'll have to make some more, and see if it happens again. (Also still waiting to see whether the sole uncracked bead cracks...)
But in the meantime, I wanted to document this failure, so that I could more easily find it in the future. (That is, this one of those self-indulgent posts.)
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