Poll: Focal-Palooza

So yesterday was “Focal” day in my studio. I don’t know how it happened, but I was in the mood to make focal beads. Lots of them. That only happens once in a Blue Moon. I get in a Zen-like state while torching, and love to do sets with many similar or identical beads. It calms me and I can forget the world around me. I guess it’s to counterbalance the unpredictable madness of my daily life as a mom of two little girls.

Here’s yesterday’s “crop” of focals (click on pic for bigger view).
One is missing … I guess I was checking too long for chill marks, and it had thermal cracks.

I can’t make up my mind which ones to etch. Right now I think I’ll etch the 4th bead in first row (opal yellow/purple), second bead in middle row (copper green/purple/opal yellow) and third bead in last row (green/purple).

Help me out! I would like to do a poll, but I just can’t figure out how to do that. Argh … would you believe it, I am computer literate and was working as an IT database developer in my previous life? Ah well, let’s just forget the poll and please add your comment to Facebook or here. Thanks 🙂

ETA: I think I will also try to etch one of the Fire Opal style beads, just to see how they turn out. Maybe the green one (3rd in top row).


7 responses to “Poll: Focal-Palooza

  1. Judith from my experience srtoger more vibrant colors etch better than less intense or weaker colors. top row 1 and 4 unless 1has silvered uncased glass, 2nd row 4th one and 3rd row 4th one…..my $.02 :)Dee

  2. Dee – thanks for the ideas. Good idea to etch at least one of the black Fire Opals (either first in top row or last in 3rd row). Not sure I want to etch both, maybe I start with one and see how I like the effect. The 4th one in second row doesn't work, it has unencased Psyche on top 1/3 of the bead with a nice oilslick shine.

  3. I'm the odd one out here. I hate to admit it, but I don't think I have seen a bead like this etched. They are so beautiful as is, I can't imagine doing anything to them! But I'll anxiously wait and see what happens, eager to learn more, and I'm sure the result will be wonderful! (I visited your Etsy shop. Everything there is lovely too. Not sure if any of those are etched?) Not sure how to select for etching, but my two favorite beads from here are 2nd row far right, and bottom row 3rd from left. Love those colors!

  4. I totally agree with your choices. What size lentil do you use? The one I got is so large that it takes forever to get enough glass on the mandrel.

  5. Jan, I use the Zoozii’s Slim SSL large. Size is approx. 1 inch.
    When I started off I had a larger lentil press, but I had the same problems as you. It just took ages to even have enough glass on the mandrel to start decorating. And my hand would get really tired (I have a week left wrist).
    So I sold this larger press to a fellow lampworker and got the Slim SSL large instead. I’m very happy with the size. Not all designs are possible because it’s so slim – I might invest in a second, thicker lentil press over time.

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