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KristaX 2021-01-01 12:57pm

Ripple technique question
I have a question about how to do a technique that I think is pretty common as I've seen it around a lot. I don't have the funds to be buying any more tutorials at the moment, so I thought I would try in this techniques and questions thread. I pay by the hour at the studio, and have limited glass (until I can go pick up some packages across the border), so I need to have a plan when I get to the studio instead of randomly experimenting.
I am trying to get a ripple effect where the glass has small random wavy shapes with clear or transparent layers in between. And then maybe encased in clear and pressed onto shapes, but this is optional I am mor interested in getting the layered ripple effect. Kind of like abalone shell layers, or layered agate or geodes, transparent in between to show the depth between layers and irregular ripple edge
(Not gravity beads technique or the disk with dots on the sides technique).

I have a few different ideas on how this could be accomplished, but I could use some guidance so I am not wasting my studio time money... not sure on the order of what should happen. Which processes could be troublesome or cause problems with trapping air etc.

1-Bead of main colour heated then rolled over a ribbed marver, clear stringers to fill the valleys, heat then use rake to pull ripple or wave shapes, encase in clear then press

2- same thing as 1, except use gravity to shape ripples/waves

3-bead of main colour, then use stringers to build up ripple shapes, alternating clear and main colour, do 2 or 3 layers deep. Melt together (concerned about bubbles this method), then encase in clear and press.

4- same thing as 3, except just do straight lines and then after melting use rake or gravity to form ripples/waves

Or am I way off and there is another way to do this? Other tips or ways I could come at this?

KJohn 2021-01-01 10:27pm

one of the easier ways is to use ribbed roller or a flat edged tool, straight or curved (look up barley tools, arrowsprings to get an idea)
Edited for clarity:
lay down color, then clear in a thin layer and melt. Then imprint with tool of choice, and then melt down again. the imprints would have to be a little deep to last, although you could do it again. This cuts down on the bubbles and smearing you might have if you imprint the color first and then try to encase.
Although for silver glass, you would imprint then reduce and then encase. There would be some bubbles.

I have also see where people built up using stringer but I've never made that work well myself, and it takes forever.
Hope this helps. Have fun, show us pics!

Three Muses Glass 2021-01-02 7:24am

Do you have an example picture of what you mean?

rainygrrl 2021-01-02 11:19am

I can't picture this in my mind either.

KJohn 2021-01-02 9:39pm

I took it to mean the rippled effect, like barley beads, or baleen effect? ribbed roller is the most common way to do it, IMO. There are some tutorials as well. Might be some threads here, search for pleated beads, rippled beads, barley or baleen beads, encased rib beads......see if that helps

KristaX 2021-01-03 10:41am

I'm pretty sure we aren't supposed to post other people's pictures as reference. But if you google "lampwork ripple beads" you will get the idea, or "lampwork baleen beads" (but with wavy layers instead of straight)
I did search ripple and wave beads but I will try the other terms and see what I can find, thanks!
I figured it was the roller but I wasn't sure what order to do things in and how best to get the soft ripples/waves into the layers

Eileen 2021-01-03 11:15am

I figured it was the one like the Tornado Bead tutorial. There is a link to a printed tutorial, and it is still good.

Eileen 2021-01-03 11:21am

I did just search for the pleated beads, and saw some that people had encased with a thick twistie made with thick clear on the sides of an opaque paddle, wrapped around a donut bead, and melted down. I'm not sure if that is what you mean or not.
Maybe post us a link to one you have seen, so we can see the exact bead? If it is a common technique that isn't particular to one bead maker then hopefully we can help.,

echeveria 2021-01-03 1:08pm

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Like the left ones here? Those are a twisty on a base, with a couple of wraps of clear on top of the twisty, and then gravity and heat pulled to fully encase and stretch the twisty.

KristaX 2021-01-03 3:29pm

It is not like the tornado or pleated beads (well some marked as pleated beads are more folded over than others), I will edit my comment to clarify.
The layers are folded over or pressed down so can see the layers of glass due to the clear in between. The layers aren't strait lines, they are wavy, curvy, ripples. Somehow the layers are stretched and moved into ripple or wave shapes. Like layers of waves coming up into a beach or agates.
They look similar to the flattened effect of the baleen beads, except would wrap around the entire bead. (The baleen beads seem to be more in actions and often vertically placed without ripples/waves which is why I think used differing techniques). The ripple bead would be the opposite lines and then the flattened layers would be moved (maybe raked or gravity or ?) to make these flattened layers wavy/rippled.

rainygrrl 2021-01-04 10:47am

I don't think you're describing this technique, but it does have clear between the layers and might give you some ideas.

Lotus/artichoke/pinecone tutorial

Also, I believe that Michael Barley used a razor-type tool to create his baleen beads, at least initially. If you had a curved razor-type took, would that help?

Or, maybe it is this: wavy bead tutorial?

KJohn 2021-01-04 3:33pm

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ok I think you are talking about beads like Anouks?
She has done a tutorial, here is an example, and a thread where it is discussed. She is calling them armadillo beads. It looks like the tutorial is no longer available. :(

Attachment 176987

KJohn 2021-01-04 3:53pm

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or something like Hayley's beads?
These don't have a tutorial as far as I know, it is done with a ribbed roller and encasing, raking the silver glass ridges to create a ripple

Attachment 176988

Listenup 2021-01-04 3:57pm

I've been following the links and trying to find a place where I can buy this, checked her FB page to see if she's selling anywhere, and a little voice in the back of my head said to check the tutorials I've already purchased. Lucky me, I have it. I may have to dig this one out again one day soon.

KJohn 2021-01-04 5:15pm

me too Kay! I tried it before but that was yonks ago, perhaps I'm older and wiser now? Well maybe soon.

KristaX 2021-01-05 11:11am

Yes, similar to the picture of Hayley's beads except more rippling or raking so all the layers are wavy back and forth, instead of just one spot.
So it is what I had said then?
Using a ribbed marver then a rake to make the ripples. Do you think it would be better to encase a layer before or after using the ribbed marver?
Any tips to make the ripple a nice curve instead of sharp points with the rake?

KJohn 2021-01-05 1:34pm

Krista, I have not tried it nor have I seen a tutorial on that. I would suggest encasing first. I don't think it turns out sharp, but of course don't pull it too far. I think that's the point where you need to actually try it and practice. Good luck!

Three Muses Glass 2021-01-05 10:23pm

I don't use a metal tool to rake, a clear stringer works really well. You can pull the end to a fine point, or not. Whatever suits you.

SGA 2021-01-06 6:02am

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Do you mean this twist?

Super simple. You have the idea of a gravity bead. It takes a little prep. Pull clear rods of glass to fine sharp points, 2mm or so. Set to the side.

After you use your sharp edge, encase and let gravity do it’s thing, you spot heat, not soupy but soften. Poke your clear glass tool into the middle, twist or roll the clear rod in your fingers, like you’re spinning a pencil. Let cool, snap off and melt smooth.

It takes a little bit to figure out how soft, how quick, how thick you want the twist.

KristaX 2021-01-06 7:25am

I never thought of using a clear rod to drag the ripples, thanks!
It isn't a twist, just more ripples similar to the photos of Haley's beads.

Here is my awesome drawing, I don't know why I didn't think to draw a picture sooner, I am soooo good at it. The grey represents the clear layers and the purple the coloured glass. They could be pressed into other shapes as well.

It may be a few weeks until I can make it into the studio, but I can't wait to try it! Thanks for all the help!

SGA 2021-01-06 7:42am

I think if you try adjusting the width of the baleen cuts, speed of gravity and spot heat different edges of the bead, allowing gravity to pull it one way, flipping the bead or spinning it in the other direction, you’ll get those different ripples. Play with your flame. Fine pin point flame width for narrow heat direction.

The clear rod won’t drag too far. But the trick is to drag the surface. Don’t plunge too deeply if you use it as a raking tool. But once the point becomes warm, it will melt into your bead. I find it’s best used when I spot heat, plunge the point, twist and break it off when the glass solidifies again. I use it to rake if I have a mostly melted dot on the surface. Think red dot, white bead. It can make a cute heart.

SGA 2021-01-06 7:46am

Thinking about it... I think you’re trying to wigwag a baleen bead?

SGA 2021-01-06 7:49am

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NO!!!!!!! I know what you are trying to do.
This???? Completely different technique. Totally awesome one too. Let me search LE and see if it’s here. I only know it from classes and tutorials. I’m not quite comfortable in putting it here, yet. I’m sure it’s somewhere available.

KJohn 2021-01-06 11:36am

oh might be it! Yes there's a tutorial somewhere here, wave bead. Might have been mentioned in an earlier comment by Roberta?

Works well in boro, a few have tried it in 104, you might just have to work slow. Funny enough, this sort of bead is why I started lampworking to begin with, just never made many as it turned out, except when I played around with some boro.

SGA 2021-01-06 10:46pm


Originally Posted by KJohn (Post 5094491)
oh might be it! Yes there's a tutorial somewhere here, wave bead. Might have been mentioned in an earlier comment by Roberta?

Works well in boro, a few have tried it in 104, you might just have to work slow. Funny enough, this sort of bead is why I started lampworking to begin with, just never made many as it turned out, except when I played around with some boro.

Doh! I missed that. Roberta was way way ahead of me. Sorry Roberta!:waving:

Three Muses Glass 2021-01-07 8:48am

A different way to do those wave beads is to make a disc with a twistie (sometimes, some glass, like the 104 silver glass and especially boro do multicolors already) and zig zag a clear stringer around, almost mandrel to mandrel, then melt it in.
These were done with boro and that method. I have some pics with 104 using that method as well but they're in an old file someplace.

Slightly pushing the zig-zag of clear back and forth or just laying it down will give slightly different results.

You can also do a variation of that for tab beads where you want the waves the opposite direction. I would lay down a base, a tight twistie on top, melt it in and pull a loose spiral with clear stringer. Melt in, pre-press, then encase.

Really, so many ways to do them.

KJohn 2021-01-07 3:05pm

that's so beautiful! using a twistie for 104 sounds easier. I just love the movement of those.

rainygrrl 2021-01-07 3:25pm

Ha-ha, Shardi. Great minds think alike, right? :waving:

This thread is turning into a really nice resource for making some cool beads.

Eileen 2021-01-07 7:39pm


Originally Posted by KJohn (Post 5094342)
or something like Hayley's beads?
These don't have a tutorial as far as I know, it is done with a ribbed roller and encasing, raking the silver glass ridges to create a ripple

Attachment 176988

She teaches that technique in classes, but I don't think there is a tutorial at this time. I took it at Bead Camp a couple of years ago.

Eileen 2021-01-07 7:42pm

I bet that is it! I have made wave beads in 104, but I had to go slow.

KristaX 2021-01-09 12:06pm

No it isn't the disk technique with the dots on the side, I mentioned that in my first post. Those layers look different, deep layers on top of one another and uniform.
I want the more flattened layers beside each other and random ripple look like the waves on a beach or agate or abalone shell.
The pictures of beads like Haley's beads have a different look than the disk or twistie technique. I want a larger flatter bead that has the layers but and with more movement in the ripples.
I'm pretty sure it is as discussed, using a grooved marver or knife/razor to make the lines. Then creating the ripples with rake or clear rod. It will just be a couple weeks before I get to try....

Here are some reference photos from my 'inspiration board':

KJohn 2021-01-09 12:49pm

pretty inspirations! Love to see what you do.

designerbeads 2021-01-12 10:35am

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I have a how to on a disc ripple bead using Clio glass from double helix in the Glassline magazine April/May, 2019 - Vol. 32, No. 6.

designerbeads 2021-01-12 11:49am

for the kind of break up on edges that I see in your photos 2,3 and 4 I might try very fine lines of dark ivory stringer

SGA 2021-01-15 8:15am

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I had to reread your post. We’re chasing our tails and yes, you did say not gravity or the disk dot bead. LOL

But just to be sure this isn’t it:
The first one is petroleum green. It naturally striates as you work it.
The other is webbing using silver sheet. 2021-01-15 3:42pm


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