Tuesday, August 6, 2013


This bracelet holds some lovely memories of when my workspace was my kitchen. Every evening once I had packed my little children off to bed, out would come the work mate with my Hot Head torch attached and away I would go into the land of beads ..... My kiln was set up in the corner of the kitchen so I could set my beads to anneal overnight.  I would spend every evening trying out new designs, colours, types of glass, learning how they react together and just disappearing into my own little world.....

Not much has changed really .... except that now I work in my shed/studio/shed, my children are slightly larger and I am now developing my own designs from scratch.  It is still very exciting ..... and very rewarding to see the jewellery that people make using my lampwork beads.  

I remember making these beads.  I used to give myself a little challenge by selecting a few colours to work with based on something from a magazine or a book.  I have this lovely book all about underwater sea creatures.  It is beautiful (I love my books) and I love to have a peek through the pages for colour inspiration ..... Therefore, I chose Effetre pale blue, grass green, pea green, ivory, transparent emerald, aqua and a tiny piece of CIM leaky pen.  I thought that by restricting the colour palette it would focus my attention on the design ... sometimes this works .... sometimes it doesn't though .....

I started by making a barrel shaped central core using either pale blue or transparent emerald.  I gradually built up the bead by adding different colours on top of the central core until I had a rather large lozenge shaped blob on the end of the mandrel.  I added some slithers of different colours and pulled the glass whilst it was molten to distort some of the underlying layers.  Then using gravity to shape the bead I rounded off the edges of the bead holes.  When I was happy with the shape I pressed the bead against my marver and flattened the bead to a tabular shape.  Once I was happy with the shape I added the surface decoration to the bead.  To be honest, I think I kept it all quite simple using raised dots to mimic bubbles and underwater plant life .... it was good fun!  You can't always tell what your beads are going to look like until you remove them from the kiln but this time I was really pleased because they came out of the kiln exactly as I wanted them to.

I was really pleased with the internal swirls created when I distorted the molten glass.  It created the effect of swirling seaweed trapped within a glassy ocean.  The surface of the beads are very tactile and the raised dots give the impression of water droplets still clinging to the surface of the beads.

I had decided before I had finished making the set of beads that they were going to be part of a bracelet.  A very bright and vibrant bracelet.  The tabular beads measure approximately 1 inch and because the design is so busy they needed to separated by plain, simple beads.  The finished bracelet measures 8 and a half inches and is finished with a sterling silver toggle clasp.    

This bracelet is available to purchase from my shop on WOW Thank You.  If you click on a photograph, a link will take you straight there.

Sarah xx


  1. The colours of these beads are stunning they make you think of tropical holidays and looking at them makes you want to smile and you can almost feel the sand between your toes. The bracelet that you have created from these lovely beads is lovely and I am sure that it is going to be a very popular piece. I make jewellery and beads like these would inspire anyone to be creative.

    1. Thank you very much. You have put a big smile on my face!

      Sarah xx