Sunday, September 19, 2010

Easy Peasy Simple Lampwork Bead BoneTutorial for Glass Bead Makers

It's getting to be that time of year! The leaves are falling. Daylight is much shorter than it was a month ago. Autumn is here, and with the onset of autumn comes the harvest and the spooky time of the year. Last year, I posted this Easy Peasy Skull Tutorial. This year, I thought I'd show you how I make bones. Like with most beads, there are as many ways to make bones as there are beaders. Well, maybe not that many, but there are a lot of ways to make bones. This is how I make a very simple bone.

The bone is the photo is sort of a short, fat bone, but you can make your bones any length and have any girth that you would like. You can also decorate your bones any way you like. I am keeping this bone simple because of time and space. See the end of the tutorial for the tools you will need.

Step 1: Make a simple tube bead. I used orange sherbet so that the details of this bone would show up better. Use any color you like.

Step 2: Bulk up each end of the bead by adding a spacer either at the end of the tube, (just make sure the spacer fuses with the tube,) or on the ends of the tube. In the photo the right side had the spacer put on top of the glass and on the left side the spacer was put next to the glass.

Step 3: Add 3-4 dots on the glass at end of each tube. These will be the bulky part of the bone, and they will be your guides for the next step. You can space them evenly or not. That's up to you.

Step 4: Melt a small amount of glass at the end of your glass rod. Using the dots as a guide, from the middle, swipe the glass to the top of the dot.
Repeat this step on each side of the bone with each dot. Remember to go from the middle to the top of your bone.

This is what your bone looks like when you have completed Step 4.

Step 5: Now, let gravity work for you. Tilt your mandrel to about a 45 degree angle and let the glass flow a little bit on each tip.

Step 6: Tilt the bone to the other side and let the glass flow just a little to define the shape of the bone.

Remember, Step 5 and Step 6 shouldn't take too long. Don't let the bone become a gushy mess! All you want to do is to melt the glass that is on top of the dots and let it flow to the ends.

Step 7: Admire your creation for about 10 seconds then stick that baby in the kiln. Let it soak according to your schedule.


a coated mandrel
glass rod in your color choice
a marver
a torch ( I have a mini cc which I run with 2 oxycons.)
love of glass and beads

I hope you enjoy this tutorial and find it useful. Have fun!
You can find me on Facebook. I hope you post photos of your creations on my "like" page.
If you like my page, you can also add your name to list for the chance to win a teapot pendant. Just look for the teapot pendant and sign up.

1 comment:

richelle said...

SO cool. Love your beads and demos. I've had a glass starting kit for 2 years but have not even opened it yet, but I'm gearing up.