Wednesday, 16 February 2011

In the wonderful world of glass beads there are two main types of beadmaking glass.  There is 'soft' glass like I use and there is 'hard' borosilicate glass.  I have never worked with borosilicate glass.  Well, I have used clear boro rods as punties* but I've never made a bead with borosilicate glass.  However, I do own a few boro beads and pendants because I love the way borosilicate glass looks.  It has a beautiful ethereal quality and the colours are always so pretty.

If you're a UK beadmaker and you work with or fancy working with borosilicate glass then I've got some good news for you.  Kevin, one of my Twitterpals, has just got up and running and he is selling Momka's and Simax.  Some of the Momka's colours are just amazing.  The 'Purple Thunder' not only sounds groovy but it looks gorgeous too.

One day I will try borosilicate glass.  It's on my glass to-do list but until that day I will just keep on looking at boro beads and marvelling over their loveliness.

* A 'punty' is a metal, normally iron, rod used in big glassmaking and glassblowing.  It is attached to the glass object and used as a sort of handle while working.  In tiny beadmaking we tend to use clear borosilicate glass rods as punties because boro glass is harder and melts slower than our usual 'soft' beadmaking glass.  You attach the punty, normally when making cane or sculptural, off-mandrel pieces, so that you can hold the piece in the flame without having to have it on a mandrel and when you're all done you remove the punty by melting it off.

1 Comment

Judith Johnston said...

Fantastic news about a UK supplier, I love borosilicate too. I invested in a big torch for boro only to realise that having both inner and outer fire lit was probably the quickest way to burn my 6 foot shed down!