I have a new obsession – yes, I know I have lots. Finding objects that I can use in my kiln with glass. Whether I am shopping at a flea market, craft store, cooking store or even Ikea, I am looking for objects that can be used to create interesting effects. Ceramic and stainless steel are the best possibilities as you don’t have to worry about whether they can take the high temperatures. Otherwise I need to do some testing first before I use it with glass.
My husband (yes he feeds my obsession) found recently some stainless steel straws. My first test was to lay the primed* straws on the kiln shelf and then put a piece of glass on top. I fused to a full fuse and here is the result! It needed a little cold-working along the edges and still needs to be slumped, but it didn’t stick to the straws and has a nice and different effect. Think of the possibilities!
Another find is a stainless steel grill pan.
I thought this may make an interesting pattern on glass and decided to try a coaster and a spoon rest because the indentations could catch any dripped fluids. Check it out.
What’s next? To try a stainless steel grill pan for a pot melt. Normally you would use a ceramic pot or flower pot with holes in the bottom filling with glass pieces to melt through the hole. Also, they sell steel mesh which you can melt glass through, which is similar in concept just with a lot more holes. Why I am writing about this when I haven’t tried it yet? Because it has been on my list to try for way too long and I am hoping by putting it out there, I will make it happen soon! Stay tuned.
*User Notes: Always make sure you prepare your stainless steel with some kind of kiln wash. I use MR-97 for my casting molds. However, for slumping molds and stainless steel, Hotline Primo Primer kiln wash is my favorite. The downside is that for the stainless steel, you need to heat it the stainless steel piece to approximately 400 degrees and then carefully and quickly remove it from the kiln and wipe on the kiln wash while it is hot. This takes several iterations until you get the steel entirely covered with kiln wash. But it is worth the effort because they are then so easy to use and you don’t need to reapply the kiln wash until you can see the steel wearing through.
Any suggestions you think I should try or finds you have tried?