Valentines Day is coming and in celebration of this tribute to candy companies and jewelry merchants, I am making beads devoted to hearts and flowers. I am happy to report that I have had some success, at least as far as I am concerned, with this. The first bead on the mandrel is a case in point. Effetre copper green red, with leaf and rose designs. The shape of the bead may be a little off the perfect donut but the roses came out very nice, and the leaves are well shaped, too. Could I be getting better at stringer control? Probably the law of averages and dumb luck. The other 2 beads on this mandrel are of the pinker version of strawberry sweet with the same rose cane and leaf stringer application, not quite as successfully. I think the strawberry sweet, while pinker than the downright earthy version I got initially, is still too orange to not clash with the pink roses. Next experiment: peach colored roses. This is acually why the lower picture exists, since the flash I used really brings out the orange in stark detail.
On the right is my very first heart bead, made with Effetre rosewood. I really like this bead. The indentation on the top of the heart is not as pronounced as it could be, but the other side is deeper and I really like the color swirls on this side. I'm more into color than hearts. I haven't tried to make a horizontal hole heart but I imagine the overall process is about the same. Kind of like glass sculpture for dummies. I wonder if this book is out yet. If not I'll have to copyright the name before anyone else thinks of it.
A few posts back I threatened to do a comparison between the machine pulled version of silver plum dark and the handpulled version. Surprisingly enough, they do act the same. The bead on the left is the machine pulled version, and the one on the right is the one made from the few rods of hand pulled conicle that I have lying around and I got cheap. The reason it is not pearlized as much as the machine pulled version is that right around when I was making this bead was when I noticed the crockpot starting to smoke, and voila! This bead was done. I normally don't use a flash for the pictures that I am posting because it makes the colors all washed out and distorted, but in this case, it really brings out the lustre on the beads.