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Creating a lamp

Constructing a pane for a lantern often takes time and there are a number of ways of doing this. 

These photos illustrate what I think is the most rewarding form but also the most complex and time consuming.

People often ask me to make flowers and the process can be relatively simple, for example 4 petals in a poppy, to the complex, 20+ in a cornflower. Each petal has to be hand cut. Unlike stained glass where each piece has to neatly dovetail, fused glass can be irregular, perfect for the slightly raggy look of a cornflower. 

I use glass glue (which is a cross between PVA and washing up liquid in appearance)  to secure the pieces.

How the stems, leaves and ground are represented varies, but I try to make them colourful.

I buy lantern "chassis" from a number of sources though the IKEA ones are often the most reliable for strength and quality

It takes between 1 and 4 hours to construct each lantern and then they are "tack" fired in my kiln which effectively fuses each piece to the surface and softens the edges

Striker Glass

Striker glass changes colour in the kiln when fired. On this page you can see some poppies which look orange before firing but which went garnet red on firing. 

This is OK if you know the glass you are working with is going to change colour and what it will change too, but can be a disaster if like me you sometimes buy student packs where there is striker glass mixes in. It can make for interesting rainbows....

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