Yesterday, while the kiln was firing with a load full of ceramic work for the Appleton Museum exhibit
, I took advantage of the time to switch gears.
In late June I will be part of an exhibit at the Green Hill Center for Art
in Greensboro, NC. They have asked for a grouping of 45 of my Mini Sculptures
to be installed on the wall. (I am excited to see them hanging
collectively!) My newest Minis included the addition of fused glass cabochons
. My supply of these was running low, so I decided it was time to restock.
Thought I would share how to make fused glass cabochons
- a "stone" with a convex top and flat bottom.)
Using a glass cutter, I score lines at 1/4" intervals. I'll make all the score lines first, and then...
Break them over a small container with breaking pliers.
(You could also use the tile nippers that are used for mosaic work.)
After all that scoring, cutting and breaking -
an assortment of apx 1/4" square fused glass color chips
This was my very first kiln. It's an Evenheat Hot Box Mini Kiln
, and is wonderful for small scale fused glass work. The shelf is only about 4" square, but you can see how many cabochons
I am able to do at one time. The other great thing about this kiln is
the section with the controller and heating elements can be lifted off
so that the glass can be loaded easily.
After arranging the 1/4" chips for firing, the kiln is placed back on the base.
The lid is placed on top
, and now we're ready to fire!
Because these glass pieces are so small, there's little concern for thermal shock
from heating/cooling the glass too quickly.
I turn the kiln on high and set a timer for 15 minutes.
After 15 minutes, I visually start to check the progress by lifting
up the lid. The kiln has a pyrometer
that reads the temperature, but I've had more success by looking in on
the progress inside the kiln. This firing ended up taking me around 30
Here's a look inside after everything is all cooled off.
makes this work is the 1/4" volume control rule for glass fusing. I
won't go into technical, scientific details, but think of it like this -
glass wants to be 1/4" thick. If it is thinner than this it will pull
in on itself. If you stack multiple layers of glass on top
of one another, they are going to spread out until the average
thickness is 1/4". Here's a chart I made a while ago to help explain
Now it's time to select the right size and best color cabochon
for each Mini.
adhesive is used to attach the two together.
was a quick rundown and overview of this process. I'm happy to explain
anything in more detail, just leave a comment or email me -