Thursday, June 11, 2009

Fresh From the Flames

Help! I'm becoming addicted to etching... just kidding. But seriously the effect of etching on transparent glass beads is sooo luminescent.
I'm a big fan of transparent glass. I choose transparent over opaque all the time. With etching, the transparent glass loses some of it's transparency but gains a wonderful glowing luminosity. I looks like it's glowing from within.

From upper left: green, aqua and lavender hollows, 2 twister beads, dichro heart, center: 2 encased beads.

Since I know I'll be asked - I use Armour Etch Glass Etching Cream. I can't really say I recommend it over any other brand because I've never used (or even found in the stores) any other brand.
The directions on the bottle are given for etching with a stencil. I use an etching dedicated plastic container and old beat-up paint brush. I place all the pieces I want to etch in the container and cover them with the etching cream using the brush to get into all the little nooks and crannies. I then let it sit for a few minutes (sometimes 10 sometimes 30 depends on my attention span). I then come back to it and using the old paint brush, I move the beads around in the cream and turn them over and spread the cream around. Then I let them sit for a while again. I then use my old paint brush to remove and save as much of the etching cream as possible. I just put it all back into the bottle. Yup, you can reuse the etching cream. Yay! That's a good thing cuz this stuff is not cheap. After I have reclaimed as much of the cream as I can I put on my plastic gloves and clean my beads in running water. I sometimes take an old toothbrush to the ones with lots of nooks and crannies and once in a while I just let them soak for a while after rinsing then scrub and rinse again. Then dry and admire the glow. Oh, one note about drying - while your beads are wet they will look shiny and not like they are etched. So wait until they are completely dry before taking stock of your beautiful work.

You can find me and my beautiful little baubles at the Arts Market of New Orleans in Palmer Park on Saturday, June 27 from 10am to 4pm. Click the link for a Google map to the park on my website.

Till later - Flame On!
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