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Archive for October, 2015

Too many things I want to try however not enough hours in the day, so I decided to use one piece to play with two ideas.  The first goal was to replicate the Wonky Vase I had accidentally made awhile ago however many people really liked.

The second goal was to play with the Bullseye’s French Vanilla and Dense White color combination. Typically the reaction between them is a grey outline and very striking. I have seen debates on whether to make vanilla the base with dense white on top or the opposite. For this experiment, I went with vanilla as the base and dense white on top.   

I chose to start with a crackle glass and as often is the case, messed up on my first try as I grabbed white glass rather than the french vanilla. My dense white powder on white base was barely visible. With long drop vases, I like to have at least 3 layers of glass, so no worries. I did another crackle base with the dense white powder and french vanilla glass on top and then added to the top of that the other base so I had crackle on both sides.

Dense White Powder on Vanilla Base Crackle

Dense White Powder on Vanilla Base Crackle (Side 1)

Dense White Powder on White Base (Side 2)

Dense White Powder on White Base (Side 2)

The dense white on vanilla side ended up darker grey than I had expected but I remember reading others’ posts where they indicated that the reaction depended on the amount of heat and the number of times heated.  I had heated this already twice, first to 1400 degrees F and later to 1465 degrees F, to fuse the two bases together.

Now for the process of creating the wonky vase, I set up the kiln for a drop vase and let it drop. As typical with drops, each one takes a different amount of time depending on the colors of the glass and this one took exceptionally long, almost 2 hours at 1365 degrees F.

What amazed me is how the dark grey color deepened and turned browner as the vase dropped.   In hindsight, I realized I should not have been surprised about the brown color as this is exactly the reaction you get when mixing these colors where there are lots of points of reaction as in the Bullseye River Rock technique which uses french vanilla frit and dense white powder.

My first thought looking at the drop vase was hmmm, not what I expected.  But it grew on me as I let it sit for a while and realized how much it looked like a mushroom.  Now, what to do for the base to hold the vase vertical.   First I tried greens for grass, but they almost detracted from the vase.  Then I remembered some extra river rock glass I had lying around.   The river rock reminded me of a fall/winter ground where a mushroom might just pop up.

I needed a sturdier base, so I added the river rock on top of a brown transparent glass and fired the base into an organic form.  The drop vase then went back into the kiln to be tack fused onto the vase.   Since I needed to elevate the drop mold to allow for the base depth under it, I added fiber on top of the drop mold using different depths to add some wavy dimension to the top of the vase.  I took the tack fuse a little too hot and ended up making the vase wonkier which was great because this is exactly what I wanted!

Wonky 'Shroom Fused Glass Drop Vase

Wonky ‘Shroom Fused Glass Drop Vase

Detailed View of Wonky Vase

Detailed View of Wonky Vase

Next step is to try the opposite, dense white as the base with french vanilla on top.

NOTE: I learn much of what I know from reading other websites, classes and blogs and hence, I haven’t really invented anything new here.  But I am sharing what I found to work and not work.  If you have found other ways to do something similar to this, please share.  Thanks!

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