I use the ancient art of lampworking (now called flameworking) to produce many different types of bead, which can incorporate a variety of materials, including fine silver wire and silver leaf. Glass rods are melted using a specially designed dual-fuel blowtorch and turned into gorgeous glass creations! Each lampwork glass bead used in my designs is made by myself.
Each of my beads are one of a kind. You will not find either the beads or jewellery items identical to them anywhere. I began to make my own glass and silver beads because I became disillusioned with the mass produced, poorly finished items on the market for sale. Each of my beads has been carefully crafted, using the highest quality glass and materials, together with various different lampworking techniques to create different effects in the beads. You can rest assured that time, effort and care have been put into creating unique, unusual and beautiful additions to your jewellery collection.
In addition to making beads and jewellery, I offer lampwork tuition. These are one-to-one classes, in a fully equipped studio. All materials are supplied. I currently offer: a taster session, comprising three and a half hours that includes, a briefing on equipment, health & safety, information about glass, demonstrations and then making your own beads. For those who fancy a bit more, there is a whole day session, which includes the above and additionally we will explore more techniques and make more beads. I will also be offering tailor-made sessions to cover specific techniques of your choice. Gift vouchers are available too. Please get in touch if you are interested in having a go at this amazing art form!
All of my pieces are annealed in a digitally controlled kiln to eliminate stress that is introduced into the glass during the making process, and to ensure the bead is strong and durable. Beads that are not kiln annealed are likely to break very quickly. After they are annealed, I clean each bead of the clay-like substance that is used to coat the mandrels they are made on. Each bead is then carefully checked before being strung as art jewellery or placed for sale. The art jewellery pieces are inspired by a wide variety of things but the coast and organic shapes and colours predominate!