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Tips, Techniques, and Questions -- Technical questions or tips

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  #1  
Old 2014-08-28, 8:37pm
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carolinesbeads carolinesbeads is offline
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Default Anguish over a bellflower/pierced flower press

I have convinced myself that I need a bellflower or a pierced flower press. I am trying to resist. I am certain that it will be the perfect tool and I will make and sell many many flowers so it will certainly pay for itself! Even though I have yet to even attempt to sell a bead. I was browsing etsy and found some vintage bellflowers and they all had a weird fin on them. It looks as if the glass came through the wire grove. I am wondering how easy these are to use. Do I really need one? Thoughts??

Caroline
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  #2  
Old 2014-08-28, 10:13pm
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I have only played with one once at the gathering. Seemed super easy to me. I didn't get a fin that I noticed. Hopefully others who have one will chime in.
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  #3  
Old 2014-08-28, 10:37pm
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Good to know thanks! I seem to become obsessed with a tool then I get it and am shortly obsessed with a new tool! Did you use a bellflower press or the pierced flower press?

Thanks Caroline
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Old 2014-08-29, 3:22am
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I used a bellflower press that my friend Peggy was nice enough to bring for a few of us to test. I got to see but not try with glass the prototype for the pierced flower.
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Old 2014-08-29, 7:08am
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Could the fin be a seam line like we see from molded glass?
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Old 2014-08-29, 8:29am
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Show us a pic of the fin. It didn't seem to me like there was "leakage" through that area. Let me see if I can draw Peggy's attention to this thread and see if she has input.
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  #7  
Old 2014-08-29, 2:53pm
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If you look at the photos of my new press (first 30 on their way to me from
Toolmaker), or the bellflower press, the side of the "male" portion of the press has a slot so that you can insert either a mandrel (mine) or headpin (bellflower). When pressed, some glass is going to find that slot! Depending on your finishing techniques, it is up to you (and your skill level) whether that "fin" will show.

Hope that helps!- Gail
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Old 2014-08-30, 12:04pm
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Hi Caroline, obsessed, huh? They are a lot of fun. Do you have ideas of ways that are somewhat unique to use these flowers? How will yours stand out from others if you are selling online? I think those are considerations before buying any press or tool that gives you a specific shape, if you are going to sell your glass. I have 3 bellflower presses and they are fun, kind of zen, because they aren't too hard once you practice a little. I sell the flowers at outdoor shows for an inexpensive price. The kids and families love to make their own bouquets. The good thing about this type of tool is that it doesn't seem to go out of style. Folks always love flowers and if you get tired of it, the resale seems pretty good. I'm looking forward to seeing Gail's new tool too. take care.
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  #9  
Old 2014-08-31, 4:49pm
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My bellflower press paid for itself time and time again. Plus it is fun and a great way to warm up at the torch.
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  #10  
Old 2014-08-31, 8:26pm
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Thanks guys for the responses. Rosemary very kindly loaned me hers for a week. I tried to find the picture of the bellflowers with fins but I couldn't find it. I think the glass must have been super soft when pressed. I am having lots of fun with it, I have many ideas on how to use the bellflowers however I usually get obsessed with something then never make the finished pieces. Mountain Snail, do you sell them as components or make them into jewelry? Marcy you make some very good points, I would have to sell quite a bit to make back the cost of the press. I am thinking however that the pierced flower would be the way to go right now as it offers other design options. I am loving making the bellflowers though!

Caroline
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