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Confession...I'm addicted to handmade lampwork glass beads.
Why, you ask? Oh my goodness where do I begin?!? Each one is a beautiful little work of art lovingly handmade with the utmost amount of skill...and patience!
Lampworking, more specifically Lampwork Beadmaking, involves using a gas-fueled torch to melt rods of glass and shape them into beads using tools, hand movements and gravity. The artist starts with a metal mandrel coated with a bead release powder, selects the colored glass rod(s) and then the magic begins. The glass is heated until molten then wound around the mandrel forming the bead base. Once the base is done, it can be decorated using a variety of techniques and materials. Once finished, the bead is annealed for strength and durability. Beads are placed in a kiln, heated to and temporarily soaked at a specific temperature depending on the type of glass, then allowed to cool slowly eliminating the internal stress that causes glass to crack with small changes in temperature or other shocks. This annealing process truly sets handmade lampwork apart. Mass-produced lampwork beads do not go through this process and are more prone to easily break.
All the variables in the lampworking process ~ glass colors and types, bead shapes, tools, artists' talent and preferred embellishment methods ~ are the reason these small pieces of art are unique and quite often, one of a kind pieces.
Let's look at some, shall we?
(**All photos are Copyrighted by their owners and have been used with permission.**)
That's just a tiny sampling from some of my favorite glass artists. But you must admit...they're gorgeous, aren't they? There isn't enough money in the world to buy all the beads I want to buy from them!! (See?...addicted...totally)
It's funny...when I buy their beads, I anxiously await their arrival, ooh and aah over them when they get here and then realize they're so pretty I dont want to give them up!! Happens every time. And I do have a collection so I keep one here and there to add to it. It's tough though because I really just want to keep them all...LOL. But I can't...they must be made into jewelry and shared :)
I do genuinely love using their beads. They add to the uniqueness of my jewelry. I take a one of a kind set of beads made by these artists, use them in a one of a kind set of jewelry handcrafted by me and what do you have? A chance to express your personality and individuality with beautiful jewelry that no one but you will ever have!
I could fill an entire website raving about these glass artists and showing photos of their beads. They're a talented bunch!
I appreciate all the time and effort that goes into their work and I want to showcase their talent. So I've decided to extend an invitation for them to come over, write about themselves and show us some of their work. I hope you enjoy their pages.
If you are, we'd like to meet you! Follow the steps below and tell us about yourself and your work. Feel free to share some photos with us, too :)
Click the links below to learn about these talented glass artists and the beautiful work they do...
Ema K Designs
Hello, my name is Ema Kilroy. I love to create and creating lampwork beads is my passion. I began lampworking in 2005 and have been immersed in beads ever …
Honey Bear Beads
Hi everyone. I started designing jewelry in 2004, and I started making Lampwork beads in June of 2007. My glass addiction soon took over! I started on …
Hi! My name is Robin Koza, and I'm a lampwork artist, teacher & graphic artist. I'm a dreamer and a visionary so I like to dabble in lots of things. …
Lori Bergmann Design
Hi! My name is Lori Bergmann, and I'm a full-time artisan who loves to create my own handmade lampwork glass beads, European Charm beads, and finely crafted …
Hello I'm Kristine Dery. I was born and raised in So. California but now live in Central, NY. I married my high school sweetheart, Dwayne, and have three …
My name is Lara Lutrick and I have been making lampwork beads since 1997. While at a local arts and crafts fair, I saw and bought my first true artisan …
Amanda Craigmyle - The Craftier Side
I began making glass beads in 2005 and have been addicted ever since. It is a passion and a full time job for me, I have a home studio in my garage and …
Lampwork Glass Beads by Heather Behrendt
After working with stained glass for a few years, I randomly decided to buy a hothead bead making kit to use in my tiny apartment. I didn't know what I …
Bastille Bleu Lampwork
Hi! My name is Kimberly Nicole (aka Nikki) and I'm a wife, mother, grandmother and full-time lampwork glass artist! I make all my glass beads in my studio …
I make and sell individual lampwork glass focal beads on my website and sell sterling silver and lampwork jewelry at Art Festivals around the country. …
Birtle Bead Studio Not rated yet
Hi, my name is Anita Lawrence and I am a glassaholic! I have been a self taught lampworker for about three years now and owe my learning to many of the …
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