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Thursday, May 26, 2011

Knobby murrini ends offcuts breath new life ;-)

Yup, that would be the headline at my house.

I have been absolutely busting my boiler to catch up on my murrini orders for Affordable Inspiration ( because the lovely Kerry has managed to sell out of quite a few and is about to start a new line of rose murrini slices for me too..... YAY!

I have been mady making a nice range of different colours of rose murrini cane in soft glass (104coe) and getting them pulled, annealled, sliced, reheated, pulled to final diameter then annealled cut and packaged has been a LOT of hard work.... but fun too!  I made a pink boro cane for myself just for some fun in the midst of this rose-murrini-fest and here it came out.... quite nicely if I do say so myself!

After I  made these canes I am usual put my offcut ends into a container (where I keep all the bits off the ends of murrini pulls..... just in case).  Looking at the ends I noticed that there was still a bit of pattern left, that might make a nice pendant or something, so after some reheating and reintroduction to the flame.... it did!  There was not a great deal of pattern left but after some judicious moving of glass it came out as a very nice pendant, but with a clear glass hole in the middle.... on the fly I grabbed some stamen cane and poked it in from the back.... voila, rose with stamen.....

My soft glass adventures came out fairly well too, with this murrini using premium handpulled dark pink, an expensive glass (thanks to price of precious metals) but a lovely colour glass.  I was very happy with this one and I think Kerry's customers will like them too.... even better!

I EVEN tried an exercise in patience last night and used some Devardi Salmon pink with transparent cranberry inbetween the petals. I now have a LOT of salmon coloured frit on my desk, but if they come out half as nice as I think they might, it will have been totally worth it!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Oranges and lemons.... no bells ringing, but I like em!

Yep, I am a murrini "happy chappy" today.  I got my lemon and lime canes out of the kiln this morning.... they looked good (stable no sign of a crack) especially for using the yellow colours in there, always a bit of a risk.  My orange pieces look like they are going to come out fairly nicely as well and when I sawed the large diameter cane I had them sitting all together on my saw top and wow they looked good, so I grabbed the camera and took a quickie pic:

At the back is the orange component cane for me to make up today, you will notice that I gradated from a yellow to the darker orange on the outside colour and also made the wedges a bit thinner so I can fit four pieces in like the lime cane.  I think it looked better with the 8 slices.  You might notice too, that I made the pith a little bit thicker on the lemon before popping on the bright yellow rind.  After I finished that one, I decided to keep it a bit thinner on the lime cane and I do think the results come out a little bit nicer as well.  I am thinking I might slice some of these larger diameter canes up and polish off on my friends flat lap next time I go over to visit her (Gail at goglass studio that is).  I am looking forward to finishing off the orange cane too, it think it will look really cool with all three types mixed in together.... very bright!

Oh, and I thought I would try my hand at some wire coiled donut bails..... well, they are not the neatest job in the world, but I do think they look pretty funky myself.  I used some copper because I had a massive commercial roll of the thin stuff I got at a garage sale for $10 - the dude used it to wire wrap some sort of magnet or something.  I will put its previous use down to secret mens business, but at least it is coming in very handy for a real newbie wireworker.  The first one is a rough ivory doughnut with some of my coffee bean murrini .... I am calling it donuts and coffee!

 This second attempt is not an improvement really, but the boro donut looks quite good in real life on this bail and at least then its sellable to a non-jewellery maker!

Monday, May 2, 2011

I'll have a slice of lemon and lime with that ......

I thought I would pop on a quickie post about how my citrus murrini are going so far.  I made the lemon component first and after pulling it out and thinking about it a lot more, I decided to approach it a little differently on the Lime slices.

I made the lemon component as a triangle to sit 3 together for half of the lemon slice and tried to mix in different transparent yellows with some clear in there too so it looks like that little those membraney bits.... didn't really work out the same as the picture in my head, but ok I suppose.  I mixed some trans lemon with some of the CIM ginger to use as the colour for the pith and then straight cim ginger for the pith around the outside of each section before putting the together.

When I made the lime one I decided to pull a little smaller and to also make the triangles a little slimmer so I can fit four of them into a half circle.  I also decided to forgo the membrane effect and just graduated the transparent colour from light on the inside to a darker transparent green at the outside.  I did the pith the same as the lemon. 

Tonight I will put them together, stick on some more pith and pop on some bright opaque rind..... I am looking forward to seeing how it comes out.  I also reckon I might make an "orange" as well just for some fun and to make a nice mix of murrini chips to sell via Affordable Inspiration.
I can just see a tall glass of water with some lemon and lime slices floating in there as a bead!

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Have to make some beads.... begone murrini..... NOT!

Well I do actually feel like its about time I made some ACTUAL beads rather than murrini.  It seems that every time I got onto the torch I have to discipline myself to knuckle down and do what I am supposed to be doing (read, promised orders etc.)..... and fail miserably!

I have so many ideas swirling around in my head that I end up thinking of everything, flitting like a butterfly from idea to idea and never settle onto finishing one project or concentrate and finish one thing off before starting another.  At the moment I have about four different complex murrini going in different stages of component canes..... I think I would gain a great deal more satisfaction if I could just finish one off and put it aside, but nope... I go off on a tangent AGAIN.  I can try to dress it up as "artistic temperament" to have and idea give birth to further inspiration, but if being honest it is more a lack of self discipline in my case.

Today I have unwrapped my new good quality whyteboard and shall endeavour to write a priority list that I can then have the satisfaction of ticking off/rubbing out things as I complete them. 

Stay tuned for the next murrini out of the kiln, lemon and lime slices.  I am thinking they would be really cool to make a cocktail or glass of water bead with a lemon or lime slice floating in the fluid..... just more ideas!

Here are some pics I took this arvo as some inspiration for some tonbodama style murrini and for my good friend Tezza (a lampworker down in South Australia) who makes the most amazing floral and blossom beads you ever saw!  I think these are off a Eucalyptus Ficafolia and the blossoms are HUGE!  Oh, I also discovered that bees really don't like camera lenses close up.... nearly got stung ;-)