Lampwork Links

All links will open in a new window.

Creation is Messy – check out their Colour Palette pages for a wealth of info on all their colours.

Mind Melt by Melanie Graham – “104 COE Glass Colour Testing Results and Musings”

Dragonjools by Dwyn Tomlinson – “Breathe fire and melt glass. New Product Reviews. Useful info for Lampworkers.”

Beads by Laura – Laura Sparling’s blog
Heather Kelly – Lots of CiM colour testing

A Comparison of Reds

It’s no secret, I love reds.

I’m always on the hunt for the “perfect red”, if such a thing exists so when I recently got a mixed bundle of CiM reds from Tuffnell Glass the first thing to do was to test them all out and compare with existing reds from my collection.

Comparison of Reds 1

So here we have:
Top Row, L-R: Effetre Striking Red, Effetre Dark Red, Effetre Purple Red, an unknown (possibly Effetre Carrot Red), Effetre Carrot Red, CiM Hemoglobin
Second Row, L-R: CiM Rudolph and CiM Valentine
Third Row, L-R: CiM Bing and Effetre Medium Red
Bottom Row, L-R: CiM Maraschino and CiM Sangre

Misc RedsSo firstly, I have never had much luck with Effetre Striking Red. It always seems to go too dark and almost end up as a transparent brown. I get better red results using Striking Orange but they’re still inconsistent. The bead you see here was an odd rod I got in a mixed bundle which was actually an 8mm rod, something I’ve shied away from on my Hot Head so far. It actually seemed to work quite well so I’ll have to play with this one a bit more.

Personally I find Effetre Dark Red and Purple Red a bit too dark for a plain red bead in general but I’ve included them here for comparison.

Effetre Carrot Red is an interesting one, it’s very organic and the strike is wonderful. I just need to confirm what that unknown rod is. I don’t know if it’s just a different batch to my labeled rod so more investigation of that colour later.

CiM Hemoglobin Ltd Run

CiM Hemoglobin is the result of an odd batch of CiM Sangre and while it’s pretty close, I found it slightly darker. I got a gorgeous transparent bead out of it, but I also got several which were more translucent. I don’t think I’ve seen this with Sangre, but maybe I need to play a bit more!

CiM Rudolph Ltd Run

CiM Rudolph is a wonderful Christmas red. It’s very bright and probably the most transparent on this list (other than Effetre Striking Red). It’s also the closest to orange of the CiM reds I’m talking about in this post. There’s definitely layering potential with this one.

CiM Valentine

CiM Valentine is quite similar to Effetre Purple Red. It’s quite brown in my opinion so perhaps more of a realistic heart colour rather than the bright red valentine hearts that we see everywhere in February. It develops a nice variation in tone across the bead, however the areas around the holes have almost gone matt. Not a full devit effect, but there’s definitely something going on there. It’s subtle,

CiM Bing Ltd Run

CiM Bing is a good bright red, although I did get a couple of beads which were difficult to strike nicely and which ended up that strange orangey/brown which I get from Striking Red a lot.

Effetre Medium Red

At the time of writing (8th Jan 2018) Effetre Medium Red is my favourite and go-to opaque red. I love the colour tone, and I love it’s organic tendencies. It can burn (see the small bead at the back in the first photo) but it’s not the most ugly of burnings.

One thing to note… Medium Red seems to come in different shades of rod from different batches. So far I’ve not noticed much different in the finished bead, but I definitely need to test this.

CiM Maraschino

Oops, forgot to take a photo with the tip of the rod for this one. CiM Maraschino is very similar to Effetre Medium Red but a bit more translucent and slightly more on the orange side of the spectrum. I don’t tend to get as consistent results with Maraschino as I do with Medium Red which is why Medium Red just wins on being my favourite. It’s close tho.

CiM Sangre

CiM Sangre is my alternative to Effetre Striking Red (at this point) even though it’s not really a transparent. It has a lovely colour tone and is generally consistent with the strike. You can also get some lovely swirly effects with the different layers used to create the rod, just look at that spiral on the big bead at the front. If you need a brighter transparent red, CiM Rudolph might be a good alternative.

Comparison of Reds 2

One thing I like to do is to look at the ends and cross-sections of the rods. They’re all so different, and can be used when identifying unknown rods. Here we have (L-R): Maraschino, Sangre, Bing, Medium Red, Rudolph, Valentine and Hemoglobin.

Glass Beads: Post Number 1

Something I am just starting to get into, is making glass lampwork beads.

The Start of a Bead Rainbow

A few years ago, Mum bought us (me) a kit to make lampwork beads after we saw someone demonstrating it at a craft fair. We both instantly wanted to have a go. We didn’t really get into it too much to start with because the little cans of MAPP gas were so expensive we just couldn’t do much. Recently however, we bought an adapter and it’s allowed us to use a much bigger, cheaper gas tank and so we can do much more with it.

Continue reading Glass Beads: Post Number 1

Button Drawing/Push Pins

Ok here goes…

So this is something I did years ago with the intention of putting it on a blog: Brightly coloured button drawing pins (push pins in America I believe). I love them, they work really well on my “Corkboard of Inspiration” where I stick up pictures of things I like/want to do, pretty postcards/gift tags I get, all that sort of stuff.

Continue reading Button Drawing/Push Pins

Blog revival


So it’s 2015, and I really want to try and revive this blog. I’ve been thinking for a couple of months now that I want to share all the crafty/creative bits and peices I get up to but I’ve just not got round to it. Well now I’m going to. It might take me a little while to get into it, and I can’t promise posts will be regular, but I’m really going for it. Starting is going to be the hardest part (hence writing this rather rambling, not-a-lot-of-anything post!) but once I’m up and running I’m sure it will be fine.

Continue reading Blog revival

Open Studios Weekend

As part of Suffolk Open Studios, my studio will be open to the public on the 8th & 9th and 22nd & 23rd of June.

Visitors will be able to see a selection of finished works for sale as well as a variety of works in progress. There will be works at all stages of completion to give people an insight into the way I work. I will also have some of my sketchbooks on show. I will be working on various pieces during the day and will be available to answer questions and demonstrate my practice.

On sale for this first time this coming weekend will also be a selection of giclée prints of some of my paintings. I also have a new selection of greetings cards available so there is something for every budget.

My studio is at:

6 Bredfield Road
IP12 1JA


For more details about Suffolk Open Studios and for other artists whose studios are open this weekend, please visit:

Suffolk Open Studios

I am now part of the Suffolk Open Studios network.

This is going to open some great opportunities for me this year and I’m really looking forward to it. I will be opening my studio to the public for two weekends in June, as well as exhibiting work at the Showcase Exhibition at Blackthorpe Barns in May. Suffolk Open Studios also has many other exciting exhibitions coming throughout the year which I will update you on as I know more.


From the Suffolk Open Studios website:
Our Showcase Exhibition 2013 will be held as usual at Blackthorpe Barn,  Rougham from Saturday 18th May to Monday 27th May inclusive. Free entry, all are welcome, ample parking and easy access just off the A14 near Bury St Edmunds. SOS members look forward to meeting you.