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Horizontal Hearts

I shot this impromptu video a while ago because someone asked for tips on making heart beads and since Valentines Day is closer than you think, I figured I’d throw this post up.  And I also need more blog entries. I’m sooo LAZY!!!

So anyways, back to the matter at hand: Heart Beads!  Heart beads are super easy and super quick. This is a quick video on how I make my hearts. I prefer horizontal holes because it makes stringing them easier. I really hate wiring beads. : HATE IT!!

Steps:
1. Make a good sized bead, kinda fat. Make sure the ends are good (not jagged or lopsided).
2. Roll the bead lightly on a marver to flatten it and then heat the middle.
3. Using a straight edge tool, (like a butter knife or razor blade) roll the bead along the edge, like you’re cutting it in half . That’s your crease.
4. Heat the bottom center pretty hot and roll the mandrel back & forth quickly to form the tail. (watch the video)

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Glaskolben on a Surface Mix Torch

Whoa! This year has really flown by!  I was in the store the other day, looking at Halloween stuff and guess what was in the next aisle? Christmas stuff!  What’s up with that?  Can I get my trick or treating in, first?  Sheesh!

Well, since it’s obviously time to get a move on with the holiday stuff, I figure I should pull out my glaskolben and get to work if I want to have enough for the tree this year.  What are glaskolben, you ask?  Germany’s gift to Christmas, that’s what they are!!  Seriously, though, they’re pre-pulled points made from 90 COE glass (soft glass). They’re awesome!! If you’ve ever pulled points before, you know what a pain in the butt it is. Especially with soft glass. Well, that’s why glaskolben are so darned fabulous! The hard part’s done and all you have to do is blow to your heart’s content!

Because glaskolben are cylindrical in shape, some people have a hard time blowing a round ornament using them.  Well, it’s actually pretty easy to do so I made a short video showing how I do it. Also, contrary to popular belief, you do not have to use a fuel only torch, like a Hot Head, to use glaskolben.  I’ve always used an oxy/fuel torch for mine. Mostly the Lynx center-fire on my GTT Phantom, but I’ve also used my Bobcat & Cricket (also GTT) to make a few ornaments, as well.

So anyways, here’s the video. Enjoy!