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  #1  
Old 2007-04-26, 7:56pm
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Default Artichoke/Lotus/Pinecone Bead Technique

I apologize for the poor quality of the pics. Very hard to have someone photograph while you're torching!


Step One: Make the core - use a dark color for light colored petals, or a light color for dark colored petals (enhances the contrast). Here I am using black as the core for the Raku petals. It should be very thin, so marver it well! Then add 4 dots at one end for the innermost petals. I find that starting on the end furthest from your holding hand works best. I also usually score the first with a razor petals since they are right at the edge of the core and can't be raked.


Step Two: Dot each of the petals with clear. Make sure they are completely covered to the edge of the black. Melt smooth, angling the mandrel so the clear "leans" to the edge (it won't produce a nice, puckered end yet).


Step Three: Add 5 dots for the second row of petals, centering the dots on the edge of the previous petals. I do 4 dots on the first row and 5 thereafter because I've never been able to get 5 on the first row! I do think it looks best with an odd number of petals. Melt the dots flat, then heat each dot and gently rake the end to a slight point. Don't overheat or rake
too hard, or it will distort the previous layers.


Step Four: Add clear over the new petals. Rather than just dot the clear, I dot it on and slide toward the pointy ends of the petals. You need to make sure to cover all the petal, including the raked points.


Step Five: Melt smooth, and then gently marver to get a slight cone shape. You should start seeing the puckered end on one side by now.


Step Six: Add a third row of petals, rake, and case in clear. Of course you can keep adding rows as long as you like! When you have the desired number of petal rows (or run out of space on the core!), heat the whole bead again and let gravity shape it into a fat teardrop.


Step Seven: This is where I add some leaves. I use a cane made from copper green striped with black, pulled to about a 2-3mm stringer. Swipe on leaves starting from the mandrel edge and going towards the middle of the bead. Again, I usually do 5 leaves per bead.


Step Eight: I finish by adding a small dot using the leaf cane right at the mandrel edge in between each leaf. This hides any small mistakes, and makes it look finished. Lastly, warm the whole thing up again (actually, you should be doing this all along!), making sure the leaves/dots are fused to the bead but not melting them in completely.



I hope this makes sense - I never knew how hard it is to write up a tutorial until I tried to do it!


Aimee
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  #2  
Old 2007-04-26, 8:10pm
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OMG OMG OMG, I've been wondering how to do this and had it right in my head but it CRYSTALLIZED with your tut!

Thank you for the AHA moment,

stacy
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  #3  
Old 2007-04-26, 9:14pm
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You are so cool Aimee! Thanks so much!
Carli
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  #4  
Old 2007-04-26, 9:15pm
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Thanks Aimee!

Nice tut, easy to understand, you did a great job.
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  #5  
Old 2007-04-26, 10:42pm
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Thank you! This is a wonderful tut. And, very generous of you - I might add
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  #6  
Old 2007-04-27, 1:30am
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Wow cool tut!
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  #7  
Old 2007-04-27, 2:29am
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Gee thanks a lot Aimee, I'm supposed to be making floral beads for a show & here I am spending the last 2 hours making 'artichokes'..... What fun....... Great Tut.
Kerry
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  #8  
Old 2007-04-27, 3:57am
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Thanks Aimee, Great tut,I have to try it right now!

Kathy
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  #9  
Old 2007-04-27, 5:03am
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Thanks Aimee. That's wonderful!

Miss Kate
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  #10  
Old 2007-04-27, 7:31am
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What a great tutorial.

Thanks,

Jeanette
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  #11  
Old 2007-04-27, 7:52am
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Thanks Aimee!
Can't wait to give this a try.
Carol
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  #12  
Old 2007-04-27, 8:31am
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Thank you so much!
Carmen
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  #13  
Old 2007-04-29, 5:23pm
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Thanks so much, Aimee. The instructions and photos are great. It's very generous of you to share this with us. Can't wait to try it.
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  #14  
Old 2007-04-29, 5:51pm
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Very nice those look like fun I am trying this one! Thanks.
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  #15  
Old 2007-04-30, 9:00am
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beautiful!
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  #16  
Old 2007-05-06, 3:03pm
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I've always wondered how this was done. Thanks so much!!!
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  #17  
Old 2007-05-07, 4:33pm
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Thank you for the tutorial, I have wondered how these were made.

Lauri
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  #18  
Old 2007-05-07, 5:03pm
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Great tut, Aimee! I made one of these beads last night; it went really well until I applied the leaves.

I was listening to an audiobook and it was a very suspenseful part so I wasn't paying enough attention to my glass. I applied the leaves to the top. You may have heard me say a bad word rather loudly.

Teri P
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  #19  
Old 2007-05-07, 5:39pm
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Thanks for all the nice comments folks!

I thought I heard something way in the distance last night, Teri - bummer about the leaves! I wish I could say I never do things like that, but of course I can't...


Aimee
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  #20  
Old 2007-05-13, 9:25pm
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Inspired by your great tut Aimee, I've been making clover flower drops..... Kerry
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  #21  
Old 2007-05-13, 9:35pm
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Kerry, that is way cool!!! And what is that lucious purple...?


Aimee
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  #22  
Old 2007-05-13, 9:54pm
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Hi Aimee, the main purple is a Moretti dark violet but I did mix a little transparent amethyst with it for the last couple of rows. They are really fun to make & were very popular at the Mother’s day craft market. Kerry
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  #23  
Old 2007-05-14, 12:05am
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Very nice! I think the blended colors really make it!


Aimee
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  #24  
Old 2007-05-25, 7:53pm
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Great tut. Thanks so much!
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  #25  
Old 2007-06-05, 8:36pm
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Stunning Catts and thank you Aimee for a wonderful tutorial! I love the colours you got out of the Raku.
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  #26  
Old 2007-06-05, 11:36pm
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I wanted to share my latest - these are bubblegum pink petals:



I still think Kerry's purples are da bomb!


Aimee
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  #27  
Old 2007-06-06, 12:24am
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WOW!!! They are brilliant Aimee.

Is there a trick to colour selection? When I tried my colours just dissipated into the clear. I tried raku first bead and teh opaque red on the next. I wondered if I should put a white dot under the coloured dot so the colour wasn't swallowed by the clear.

Any thoughts?

Great tutorial - it is so clear and straightforward

Thanks
Jenn.
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  #28  
Old 2007-06-06, 8:44am
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I think the main "trick" is to not apply too much heat when melting the dots. Just enough to get them almost flat, then pulling the points will finish them off. Also, make sure you cover them completely with clear, or the color will spread (and some colors spread more than others!).


Aimee
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  #29  
Old 2007-06-06, 2:14pm
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They are just beautiful Aimee, I will have to try some more of these. Now to get some bubblegum pink & I was trying to be so good this month.... So many colours, so little money.... Kerry

Hi Jenn..
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  #30  
Old 2007-06-06, 11:46pm
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Thanks Aimee

I will try again.

Hi Kerry....
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