I’ve created two new light sconces with frit balls over the last week or so. This blue light sconce had a few challenges along the way, but I made some repairs and adjustments to deal with the issues. In the end, I think that it turned out quite lovely.
This blue light sconce split – not once, but twice – during each of two slump firings. After each attempt, I filled in the crack with clear frit and tack fused it back together. When I tack fused the clear frit in the crack for the second time I also tack fused a piece of thin clear glass to the back of the light sconce. I also decided to add some copper metallic glass paint along the tears to show them off instead of trying to hide them. Some of the paint burned off during the firing, but I think that what remains makes for a wonderful addition to the piece. If you’d like to have this blue light sconce as an accent light in your home, you can find it here in the store.
I’ve also had some problems with the frit paintings tearing during the slump firings into their bowl shapes, so placing a piece of thin clear glass at the bottom of the piece, before adding the frit balls, is a fix that has worked well twice now and I think I’m going to stick with it into the future as part of my process. My guess is that tack fusing the frit balls together creates more opportunities for tearing in the slump just because of the difference between a sheet of glass and a sheet of frit balls. There is too much space between the frit balls and that creates more opportunity for separation during the slump firing. The thin sheet glass I’m adding at the bottom of the piece alleviates that problem.
Learning about glass and processes is always ongoing, however these frit ball pieces add a very interesting challenge to the usual mix. Glass has very different properties in its various forms – sheet, frit, stringer, rod, and now frit balls – and learning about those differences, both in the fusing and in the slumping, continues to make my studio life an adventure. 🙂
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