Wednesday, May 31

Silver, Silver and More Silver!

Today I am showing you another style of Pendragonfyre beads using silver glass and 99% fine silver wire.
I find this method of capturing the reduction of the silver glass under the clear encasement allows the colors and mother of pearl shine to be magnified tremendously.

The first set is made with CiM - Creation Is Messy's Eel Grass as the base glass. This is a lovely transparent green that reminds me of nature.

I added a stripe of Double Helix Psyche silver glass in the middle and wrapped some 99% fine silver wire around it. Then I reduced and encased the bead to bring out the amazing blues, creams and purples. 

The silver wire melted and formed little drops and streams of silver under the thick layer of Zephyr clear glass. The spacer beads are pure Eel Grass.

The second set is made with CiM - Creation Is Messy's Burnt Sugar as the base glass. This is a warm transparent brown with a peachy tint.

I used the same technique as before, but with Double Helix Kalypso silver glass instead of Psyche. The result was stunning, with rich blues, creams and purples. 

The silver wire also created beautiful patterns under the clear glass encasement.
The spacers are pure Burnt Sugar.

As a final bead, I used the same glasses as above and created a hollow focal bead.
I am still practicing the technique of hollows. 

This one was created on a puffy mandrel and I am pleased with the result.

As always, I hope these beads inspire you to create something beautiful in your world!

Both CiM and Effetre glasses are available through Nortel in Toronto through their online shopping cart. I suggest ordering some very soon.

Til next time,



Tuesday, May 30

Silver Glass and Fine Silver Wire

I have always been fascinated by silver infused glass and how it reacts with different types of glass. I enjoy creating unique effects with CiM - Creation Is Messy or Effetre glasses and silver glass.

In this set of 6 encased round beads, I used CiM Blueberry Muffin Ltd Run as the base glass. This glass is a very dark opal indigo purple that looks almost black when used as a base.

I started with a clear glass core and covered it with the purple glass. I added some dots of Double Helix Notos silver glass and plunged them into the base. 

After a reduction and encasement each dot resulted with several layers of Zephyr clear glass to create the subtle color variation and beautiful mother of pearl shine!

The round beads are about the size of marbles and they are paired with chunky nugget spacers made with a mix of clear and Blueberry Muffin indigo purple glass.

This style of Pendragonfyre beads are named Silvertails for the 99% fine silver wire that I wrap around each round bead. 

For this set the base glass is called CiM - Creation Is Messy Wheatgrass, a bright misty opal green. Although it is said to be a misty opal, I found it to be more of a transparent glass with such a clear and clean fresh green hue.

I have checked availability of these colors as In Stock on Nortel Glass' online shopping cart.
Reach out to Jean or Jennifer at Nortel to add some of these glasses to your next CiM - Creation Is Messy glass order!

Happy torching!


Monday, May 29

Dragonscales Beads - Can you imagine a dragon?

Can you imagine a dragon? If one existed, I imagine it look like the beads in today's blog post.

I want to share with you some of my latest creations inspired by these majestic creatures. 
This is a bead style that I regularly made several years ago.
I have always been fascinated by dragons and their mythical powers, so I decided to make some beads that capture their essence.

Note: I have left these beads with their glossy surface for today. 
To create a more tactile bead, I usually will pop these in the rock tumbler for a few hours to create a matte surface.

The first set of beads is based on the idea of a green dragon with golden scales. 

I used Effetre Army Green opaque glass as the base and applied 99% fine silver foil on top. Then I sprinkled some Val Cox Purple Rose frit over the silver and melted it all together. 

The result is stunning: the silver foil creates a shiny contrast with the green glass and the purple frit adds some depth and texture. The beads look like they have tiny golden scales that sparkle in the light.
The spacers are pure Effetre Army Green glass.

The second set of beads is inspired by a pink dragon with metallic accents. I started with Moretti Tongue Pink opaque glass as the base and wrapped it with 99% fine silver foil. 

Then I added some rare Val Cox Purple Rose frit on top and melted it in. The effect is amazing: the silver foil forms a metallic layer around the pink glass and the purple frit creates a pattern of "dragon scales". 

The beads look like they have a delicate golden coating that reflects the light. 
The spacers are pure Moretti Tongue Pink.

I hope you like these dragon-inspired beads as much as I do. I'm sure Nortel has the best selection of glass for your projects. Jean & Jennifer will be very happy to have you as a new or returning customer!

Thank you for reading and stay tuned for more Pendragonfyre Tales adventures!


Sunday, May 28

Sunday Spacer Roundup - CiM - Creation Messy, Moretti and Effetre Glasses

I love making spacers. They are like little beads of zen that calm my mind and challenge my skills. 
Sometimes I just grab a random rod of glass and see what happens when I melt it on a mandrel. 
Other times I try to match the colors of the rainbow or the seasons. 
Here are some of the spacers I made recently and what I learned from them.

The first set is made with CiM Aquamarine Ice Misty Ltd Run, a gorgeous blue misty opal that reminds me of the ocean. 

It was easy to work with and gave me a nice even color. 

The second set is made with CiM Winter Mint Ltd Run, another misty opal that has a fresh green hue. 

It was a bit stiffer than the Aquamarine Ice, but still melted well. 

The next three sets are made with Italian glasses:

The first one is still labelled as Moretti, so you know it has been around for a very long time.

Named Tongue Pink# 258, it looked like a dull ivory/white rod, but when I heated it up, it turned into a lovely ivory with pink streaks. 

I got this glass from Jean at Nortel to test, although it is not on their site, they have lots so reach out to her if you want to order.

Effetre Pea Green 212 is a lovely bright pastel that is a fundamental glass for most lamp artists used in florals and natural designs.

Finally, the true test of making spacers! Effetre Striking Red Transparent 076

As you can see, striking this glass can vary in tone and hue consistency... but it makes a lovely base for other glasses as you may have seen in my recent post using Lumiere Lusters.

I hope you enjoyed seeing my spacers and maybe got inspired to make some of your own. 
Reach out to Jean or Jennifer at Nortel to order some of these glasses in stock now!

Until then, happy torching!

Saturday, May 27

Rediscovering Effetre Colors - Spanish Leather 423

I'm excited to share with you one of my latest experiments with silvered ivory and Effetre colors. Silvered ivory is a wonderful technique that involves melting fine silver and Effetre ivory together to create beautiful stringers that can be used for decoration. In this post, I'll show you how I used silvered ivory and Effetre Spanish Leather to make a stunning set of beads.

Effetre Spanish Leather 423 is a rich red brown color that has a lot of depth and variation. It works well with silvered ivory because it contrasts nicely with the ivory and creates interesting patterns and effects. I decided to make a set of beads with different shapes and sizes, including a heart, flat tabs and round dotted beads. I also added some spacers to give more options for jewelry making.

Here are some pictures of the finished beads:

I'm really happy with how they turned out! The silvered ivory adds a lot of texture and hints of sparkle to the beads, and the Spanish Leather gives them a warm and earthy feel. I think they would look great in a necklace or bracelet, or even as earrings.

If you want to try this technique yourself, here are some tips:

- Use 99% fine silver wire or foil, not sterling silver, as it will react with the ivory and create unwanted colors.
- Heat the ivory until it glows, then wrap the silver around it and melt them together.
- Pull the silvered ivory into thin stringers and let them cool.
- Use a neutral or slightly reducing flame when applying the stringers to the base bead.
- Experiment with different angles and directions of the stringers to create different effects.

I hope you enjoyed this post and learned something new. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to leave them below. 

This is a another overlooked Effetre glass that is economical in price and currently in stock at Nortel in Toronto.

If you want to try this glass or any other glass that I use in my blog, I recommend you to order from Nortel. They have a huge selection of CiM, Double Helix, Riley Dichro and glass frit that you can choose from. They are very friendly and helpful too!

These would be great with an etched surface for a faux stone finish and tactile feel.


Friday, May 26

Jet Age Studios Lumiere Lusters - A Full Session of Experimentation!

Pendragonfyre Tales blog is where I share my passion for glass bead making. 

Today I want to talk about something that has somewhat changed my perspective on adding sparkle to my beads: Lumiere Lusters!  These are products from Jet Age Studio that create stunning color shifts and shimmer effects on glass. 

I have been experimenting with them since my last visit to Nortel and I recently spent a full day at the torch working on a proper method for me to incorporate them into my style of bead making. 
I have never been a fan of glitter or mica dust in my studio as I find that the cleanup after a torch session created more work than the reward. I preferred to use silver glass to create the bling in my designs.

But then I decided to take on a challenge and try something new. I wanted to give a true review and "re-light the fire" of glitter in my studio. These are not your ordinary glitters, they are flakes of pure magic that transform your beads into dazzling jewels. They come in a variety of colors and effects, and you can use them with any type of glass.

In this blog post, I will show you some of the bead sets that I made using Lumiere Lusters and CiM - Creation Is Messy and Effetre glasses. 

CiM is one of my favorite brands of glass because they have such vibrant and unique colors. 
Note: I chose to use Effetre clear for each of the bead sets within this post, because I wanted to see how the lusters would look with different base colors.

First up, combining the luster with CiM's Eel Grass, a nature-inspired transparent green that reminds me of seaweed and algae. 

I sprinkled some Lumiere Luster's Shangri-La on top of the Eel Grass before encasing it with clear. 

Shangri-La is a gorgeous color shifting flake that goes from bright deep magenta / berry-pinks to bright orange to gold depending on the angle it is viewed. 

The result was stunning! 

These round barrel beads sparkle as you shift them with gold accent glitters!
The spacers are pure Eel Grass.

Next, I used CiM's Cleopatra, a super dense saturated transparent purple that is so rich and royal. It is so dark that in many bead applications, I dilute the glass with clear otherwise the beads appear almost black. 

But for this experiment, I wanted to see how the luster would contrast with the deep purple. So I used Lumiere Luster's Agua Verde, a beautiful color shifting flake that shifts from deep greens, to aqua, to deep blue depending on the angle it is viewed. 

I applied some Agua Verde on top of the Cleopatra before encasing it with clear. 

The result was amazing! These round beads look like they have tiny galaxies inside them!

I'm so excited to show you these amazing barrel beads that I made with Effetre striking red transparent glass and Ion Opal luster from Jet Age Studios

This luster is a stunning flake that changes color depending on the angle and the light. 

It looks like magic on these beads!
The color of these beads makes me think of candy apples that I used to eat at the country fair. They are so delicious and shiny!

The next set of barrel beads that I want to share with you is made with Effetre Black Olive glass, which is a dark transparent glass that has a brownish tint when it's thin. 

I used Flame Red Opal Lumiere Luster for this set, which is another gorgeous flake from Jet Age Studios. 

It has a fiery red glow that contrasts beautifully with the dark glass.

I hope you enjoyed this blog post and got inspired by the possibilities of Lumiere Lusters. They are truly a game changer for adding sparkle and color shift to your glass beads. If you want to try them yourself, you can order them from Jean or Jennifer at Nortel  in Toronto. And if you do, please share your creations with me! I would love to see what you make with these magical flakes!