|The photos are a sampling as all pieces are unique and cannot be duplicated. They show extremely well under halogen lighting, take up very little shelf space and attract attention to themselves. Typically buyers want to feel the smoothness of the pendant as well as see the pieces up close and at different angles. |
Borosilicate (boro) glass is a very unique and specialized type of glass. Its composition is much different from the soft glass that is normally used for beads, paperweights, art glass bowls, ornaments, etc. Boro glass is far stronger than soft glass and has been used for everything from stovetop cookware to nuclear waste containment. One of its most frequent uses is to make scientific glassware such as beakers and test tubes. Corning pyrex measuring cups are a familiar example of borosilicate glass, very hard and durable, try to scratch one! You will probably need carbide steel or a diamond. Borosilicate glass, like diamonds, will scratch other borosilicate glass. Remember it is best to keep finished jewelry and other work from rubbing against each other.
The type of work done in the boroworks shop is called lampwork. This is an ancient term used to describe the use of a flame to melt and form glass for utilitarian and ornamental purposes and is not glass blowing. A special high temperature oxygen/propane torch is used to reach temperatures over 3000 degrees f to melt the boro glass rods used to make the artwork. The pendants are made from clear and colored glass rods manipulated by intense heat and technique to achieve the uniquely colorful special effects of the finished piece. Sometimes dichroic (another specialized glass) and precious metals are also used to achieve additional dynamic effects.
All pieces of art are kiln/oven annealed to remove most of the stress that occurs within the glass as it is worked in the flame. This involves maintaining the heat of the piece after is has been worked to a high enough level to allow the small stress fractures to come together and then heating the piece to the annealing temperature and letting it cool slowly in stages. The resulting pendant is very strong and usually will not break when dropped. It is glass, however, and therefore not unbreakable.
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