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Monday, February 28, 2011

Its official, I am off unobtainium boro colour!

Yep, I have always loved the "sparkliness" of unobtainium in boro (for the unititiated its a sparkly metallic glass) but the love affair is officially over..... *you can picture here me stamping off in a huff!

I used the knobbly end of my vacstack pull to make a marble last night.... it was big and beautiful and a little bit swirly. It was one of those occasions where I couldn't wait to have a peek into the kiln this morning and because I was using my minor burner (read baby torch for boro working) it took me about an hour and a half to finish off I had visions of absolute beauty and was keen to get some job satisfaction from my glass baby........ NOPE, definitely not happening.

I know there are quite a few boro colours that do not like to be encased and will now add Unobtainium to my list (particularly in big lumps). My lovely mib had gone all "crackylicious" on me, but only where the stripes of unobtainium were, here's a pic so others can learn from my mistakes ;-)

As you can see my baby had a good and a bad photographic side. I had even popped in a little clownfish murrini at the end like a signature because this marble was the biggest I had made so far - nearly 2 inches in fact.

Lifes a learning curve I suppose - clear encased thick unobtainium.... EPIC FAIL!

**Note: if you shut your eyes and hold it in your hand..... still lovely!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

No longer a market virgin!

Well, I spent my week panicking about the market, torching up as much stock as I could and packing all the things I thought I might need...... To sell two (2) things only for the whole day.

I had to get up very early, drive into the city (which scares me a LOT because Sydney is like a rabbit warren) get set up, wait all day for a sale, repack the car and drive home in a busy traffic period. I don't want to sound like I am whinging, because the absolutely lovely and talented Vanessa Cabrera ( showed the way into town, helped me set up, lent me some of the stuff I needed for display and generally lent a convenient shoulder. I was also lucky enough to be paired with Yunita ( who was so good about helping the dodgy-arsed one and provide good company for the day.

I did manage to sell one of my highly experimental necklace pieces for a whopping $250 (biggest sale that I have ever had) to a lady that just loved it and she was saying she only collected unique pieces. Thank goodness I decided to take it to fill some space on my emptyish part of the table. I felt happy about the sale and thank goodness that covered all the stall expenses too, so the day was not a total waste.

Do I want to do a market again in town.......... the answer is quite a resounding "NO"

Hmmmmm, thinking I should sort out my Etsy store to pay for my glass purchasing habits rather than take the market route.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Rocks Market panic stations

Ok, so I am now home and just as I walked in my door last Sunday night I had a bit of an epiphany........... my first Market (ever) at the Rocks here in Sydney was only 6 Days away. Needless to say the thought elicited a great deal of panic, particularly as I have been torchless for a while with the move and health issues and had virtually NO STOCK!!!!

I have launched into a frenzy of pendant making in response to my panic. Why Pendants you may ask, they are easy to sell, require no stringing into something saleable and hopefully will fill my half of the table if I spread them out a bit. I have had some fabulous advice from the ladies who go to markets regularly, but are still having that scary butterfly feeling in the pit of my stomach.......

I have been told that it is a place where many tourist visit and that I should gear my stock towards that........... Sea Turtles was all I could really come up with at short notice (have made quite a few before) and so I have been imploding boro turtle shells left right and centre.

Cross your fingers for me that the touristy types like sea creatures. Maybe the next market might have some koalas or something a bit more Aussie, but ..... out to the torch I go (big poop, I just remembered that I will need cash change too............. sssshhhhiiiiittttttttt)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Glass blowing & Pipe making madness!!!!!

What a fun week I had last week at Gail's Goglass Studio ( A really fabulous glass pipemaker Dustin Revere ( was out visiting Australia and Gail asked if I wanted to jump in for the week and learn some serious skills..... of course I did!! My head was spinning with the stuff Dustin could make - wig wag balls that he blew then opened and applied to blown articles, uplines, inlines and just AMAZING stuff. I definitely have somewhere to aim after having seen it done, but if you look around at the pipe makers stuff you will be shocked at the beautiful artistry mixed with the functionality of what is essentially a highly technical piece of equipment....... fun, fun FUN!!!!

Dustin showed us how to make our own coloured boro tubing using a vacuum stack method which was fun, but a little bit scary on the big Delta torch. Here is the finished cane and the left over end of the vacstack which I think I might heat up and make into a cool marble!
Whilst I was there I was lucky enough to also have some time with Justin Rossi of Imagine Creations ( who specialises in ocean themed glass work with his gorgeous wife Amy who makes the most lovely implosion marbles and florals. Justin is the most precise technician I have seen work and one of the nicest blokes I have met in glass to date. Justin showed me so many of his techniques that my mind was spinning by the end of the week! Here's a pic of him at work.

Once I got home, here is a handfull of some of the stuff I have made this week. I have definitely been seduced back to boro at the moment and having fun with colour etc.

You may well be wondering "did you make a pipe" and well, the answer is yes (just a little spoon style one), which I managed to completely bugger up. aaarrrrrrggggh!

Friday, February 11, 2011

I am BACK!!!! From the half dead!

Yep I am finally back on board and have lit my torch for the first time in nearly 6 months.

The house move was a complete horror, but the high blood pressure that I didn't realise I had was causing complete havoc... and many, many VERY bad headaches.

Finally today I made some beads for the first time in ages and I decided to try out some ideas for a valentines day lampwork swap I put my name down for on beadingforum. I know what you are all thinking.... why put that pressure on myself, but I needed a massive shove in the backside to get moving and in fact are still are sitting surrounded by unpacked unsorted boxes in my lampwork area.... I am hopeful that the annoyance will force me to have a look through and sort them out... but the focus is rather firmly on the flame at present! I was inspired by Dora Schuberts lovely stringer work and made up a pattern of my own using corsets and lace as the them on a loveheart shape. They are fairly busy looking, but I hope my next batch improves a bit!

Here's SOME of my soft glass unpacked, I am embarassed to admit that I found a few boxes of rods from previous orders still in the original box and not unpacked at all...... blush!!!!