Off-mandrel hearts

Serendipitously, Holly of Holly’s Folly Glass posted this off-mandrel heart tutorial and I thought “Ooh, that looks interesting” so I went off to have a go.

First off-mandrel heart

First try! I used a thick rod of transparent pale blue for the base and added twistie ends in neutral and green. I twisted the centres, shaped the heart end and added a loop in baby blue (tricky!). Then I held the heart in my reverse-action tweezers, not the loop, in case it might shock. I took off the rod and heated the end to round off, then tried to put the heart into my kiln… but the tweezers wouldn’t let go! So I stuck it in my annealing bubbles to cool down. My tweezers have very thin pointy ends, and one of them had got embedded in the glass. I hadn’t put them in the flame, but I most have got them too hot anyway because it was well and truly stuck. In the end I just bent off the tweezers, so now one of the points is shorter than the other, and the remains are still in this bead… After this, I used my needlenose pliers instead and always hold the loop!

I made heart 2 (the blue one below) in the same way, without the mishap. Then I read Mr Smiley’s heart tutorial (there are pics later on in the thread) and I made more… and more. They’re fun and rather addictive, but I still find the loops tricky!

Blue and pink off-mandrel hearts

Blue heart: pale blue with a blue twistie and a green+brown twistie.
Pink heart: Reichenbach mystic pink mixed about with Lauscha soft clear. Goldstone ribbon on the surface and encased. The shape has a bit too much on one side for my liking.

Citrine twistie heart

This heart is Lauscha citrine with my red roof tile twistie. There were a couple in between the pink heart and this one, but they’re off to the Valentine’s swap so I won’t show them yet. The RRT twistie hasn’t been a great success – basically it may as well be RRT and hades only, because those are the colours that take over.

Opalino raku heart

I really like this one. It’s a white opalino base with coe 96 raku frit. I didn’t strike the frit properly, though I did get the opalino hot enough that it’s started displaying faint black spiderwebbing in places. Neither of which I mind – I think it gives it a delicate look, and the muted colours go well with it.

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  1. #1 by HollysFolly on November 16, 2011 - 3:04 am

    OMG!!! I was writing an article about about googling your business name and found this! So cool! So glad you tried it! I LOVE your hearts!!!

    • #2 by Kalorlo on November 17, 2011 - 5:51 pm

      Thanks, Holly! Your tutorial gave me a shove to try something different :)

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