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Archive for July, 2020

I have written in the past about people’s preferences for a glossy finish versus a matte finish on fused glass.  I always let the piece tell me what it wants after its first firing in the kiln.  I usually start off assuming glossy, but then after that first fire you can just tell if the colors need a matte finish to pop more.  No clue why a matte finish often accentuates the colors, but it does.

Mondrian Fused Glass Plate with a Matte Finish

Recently I decided to try a combo effect.  I started with a clear platter as I was curious if the effect would work (it did!) and then progressed to two colors of blue.

Finished Clear and Blue Glass Platters with Combo Matte and Glossy Finish

Here are my steps:

  1. Start with a round circle of 3mm fused glass and then cut smaller pieces of 3mm to layer on top.
  2. Fuse to a contour fuse (for my kiln this is about 1380 degrees F).
  3. Cover all the places you want to maintain the glossy look with blue masking tape.  For my piece, this was the base sheet of glass.
  4. Sandblast all the areas not covered in blue tape.
  5. Slump the sandblasted piece onto the mold of your choice.
After Sandblasting (showing blue tape to keep areas glossy)

After Sandblasting (showing blue tape to keep areas glossy)

Lessons learned:

  1. When I did the blue piece, I couldn’t remember if I had fired the clear sandblasted piece first before slumping just at a low temperature.  After two attempts at lower and lower temps, I decided any temperature above slumping temperature was just too hot.  Even 1220 degrees F in my kiln glossed up what I had sandblasted. 
  2. You could argue the real lesson learned was to take better notes!!!!

Fused Glass Platter Combining Glossy and Matte Finish

Do you have a preference for a matte finish or glossy finish?  Just curious.  I think my husband and I always lean toward matte, but glossy sells better.

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