Thursday, March 14, 2013

Green or Not? Recycled Bottle Glass Headpins

I've been playing with a bit of bottle glass that I found lying about on the streets here lately. I just couldn't resist those lovely blue bottles any longer. In the beginning I thought- what a cool thing- free glass, nice color, and I can do a bit of small time recycling. But, after fooling with it a little, I've pretty well decided that it might actually be anti- green to work with this stuff. They are now in my etsy shop.

It is definitely more time consuming. First you have to clean and cut up the bottles- watch those precious hands, you don't want to cut them to shreds! Maybe gloves would be good idea? I asked my fusible friend to give me a quick bottle cutting lesson. Turns out his are just as jagged and nasty as mine. Oh well...

Then I had to melt the stuff. As you may (or may not) know, Italian Moretti glass (Effetre) is fairly soft. That means it melts relatively quickly. This bottle glass is not. I'll bet it took me nearly twice as long to melt it as it does to melt my regular glass. Of course, bottle glass doesn't have to be specially transported to my house from Italy, so maybe that makes up for some of that extra energy; it's already here!

I also figured out  that you can add just a wee bit of extra color to this glass by rolling it in Thompson enamels, which makes it a little more fun. Oh, and if you decide you'd like to try this remember that the fire will creep up a flat side, so be sure and put it into the flame on its edge, not on the wider flat section or it will creep right up to your wee fingers!


Beth Rintala said...

Love your Blog! Can understand and hazards and challenges in creating with bottle glass. Your description says it all! The results are stunning though! <3

Islandgirl said...

I spent yesterday making beads out of a blue beer bottle...being a flat glass artist and having a tile cut off saw & other toys I actually have nice strips of glass! Beads should be on my website later today ... If I get them cleaned :( ! I did notice the flame running up the strips though, may cut them thinner next time!