Double Helix Cl/Dk.a
Purple, magenta, blue and silver blue effects with opalescence under encasement
Double Helix Cl/Oda
Pink, golden yellow, pale green and golden brown effects with opalescence under encasement
Really fast reduction
I have put these two colours together as they respond exactly the same way in the flame and work in the same way. Both of these rods have a blue undertone that can be tricked into several other colours using flame chemistry and layering. This glass is very quick and easy to lustre up in the flame. I was so flustered by it at first that I fiddled with my oxy and gas settings because I thought they were not at neutral. Leave your settings as they are because this glass will lustre in a neutral flame. For a hot head user, you might find this glass easier to use without your vents covered in foil. The only difference between Cl/Oda and Cl/Dk.a is the colour you will end up with after you have annealed your beads.
Although it is well known that this glass is Clio, I didn’t want to just put it over striking orange and show you that it could go pink. I think testing is about trying things you wouldn’t normally do with an established glass colour. To me, testing is really about pushing the glass in the free time you might have so that when it comes time for production, you can make beads without the hassle of guesswork. So I did a few different things and I ended up with some surprising and pleasing results.
The first thing I chose to do was really push how far the glass would go in it’s reactions. What I did was encase the glass without reducing it and superheat to see what would happen. “The Blue Beads” in the picture were made with the two types of Cl glass layered over a base of either Vetrofond Black or CiM Simply Berry. They were encased with either Lauscha or Effetre clear. So it is not surprising to find that heat turns CL glass white and blue. More heat equals more white. Less heat equals more blue. Okay, so what does what? Well CL/Dk.a gave me dark stormy blues on Vetrofond Black and much more royal blue on CiM Simply Berry. Cl/Od.a gave me creamier glacial type colouring on everything. I think Effetre is better to encase with because you don’t get that “fuzzy” characteristic that Lauscha gives. On the tube bead you can see a heavy reduction of Cl/Dk.a on Vetrofond Black gave me a really metallic blue that fumed the Lauscha encasing (visible in the picture when you click on it) turning it slightly yellow at the edges. You can storm this glass easily, but, if you do plan to storm the glass for the blue look, be aware that garaging will push the colour along to the white tones. It was very hot in my studio (about 92F, 33C) when I made the round beads in the picture. I was trying to capture how CL/Dk.a looked on CiM Simply Berry and it took three goes because I had to work extremely cool due to the ambient temperature. This means long garage times will impact the colours when using CL glass for this technique.
Now to my favourite part of the testing, again, I didn’t want to write hey look put this glass over striking orange and you’ll get pink. I wanted to really show the variability of it. Unfortunately some of the beads I made shattered because it was so hot in my studio that I lost focus and didn’t flame anneal properly. The beads that survived are these two and I’m glad they did, they really show the clear difference between CL/Dk.a and Cl/Oda.
Cl/Oda is the little barrel bead to the left made on a base of Vetrofond Black, it was reduced and cool encased in Effetre Clear. There is a beautiful sea green colour to it and a reflective opalescent blue. You can see that the bead has some “white” feathering where I had to heat that section a bit more to shape the end. Unfortunately it stopped at a small barrel because it was too hot, I didn’t go on to make a “nightfall” bead with this colour. I’ll do one once the weather drops back to something reasonable.
What I’m going to do is explain how I made the “nightfall” bead. It is Cl/Dk.a over a range of base colours and has been encased with Effetre Clear. The idea was to compare Cl/Dk.a and Cl/Oda with the same base colours but beads kept cracking.
Instructions for the “Nightfall” Bead
Looking at the picture to your left and starting from the bottom;
Step 1: Create the base. The base to this bead is created by stacking concentric layers of colour to assist in a graduated effect. The colours are in this order:
Effetre Ivory, Vetrofond Striking Orange, CiM Simply Berry, Vetrofond Black, Vetrofond Black (with the moon decoration and some striations and dots of Cl/Dk.a). You can also use transparent purple, ambers and blues, however if you want a graduated look always work lightest to darkest colour and finish with an opaque base colour.
Step 2. I ignored the Ivory section and layered Cl/Dk.a directly onto the base colours in concentric bands (leaving small gaps here and there) until I reached the second layer of Vetrofond Black with the moon decoration. (I did not encase the base layers in clear, but you can if you want to get a lighter finished colour on your bead). Now this is the important part, to get the super opalescent lustre underneath the encasement you need to work cool.
I spot heated small sections and twisted with a Simply Berry Stringer, I did this because as you recall heating the Cl glass lightens it and I wanted some variation in my bead in addition to the variation that the different base colours would give me.
After spot heating and twisting I took the bead out of the flame and let it cool a little. I wanted the surface of the bead to be as cold as I could get it, without the bead cracking.
Then I reduced the bead by putting it at the outer edge of the flame (as if I were flame annealing it). I let it cool, inspected the reduction, then gently wafted it a slightly heavier reduction flame again to get a super reflective surface.
I let the bead cool again slightly, then cool encased in Effetre Clear. What this means is, I very slowly wrapped Effetre clear around the bead and smoothed the encasing out without getting the bead to glow. Pop into the kiln or flame anneal for preparation into vermiculite.
I know the bead doesn’t look like it’s encased, but it is. You can leave the lustre without encasing it, but I like the more subtle effect from encasing. These Cl colours give probably the best lustre/opalescent look I’ve been able to keep in all of the garage box glass so far under encasing. The bead looks amazing when held up to the light and I’m not tooting my own horn, those transparent layers reflect a lot and the bead changes under different lighting arrangements. It really is a pretty cool effect, so thank Double Helix and beg them to make more.
I think it’s very obvious that you can use Cl/Dk.a to get that mystical wispy hot pink effect that Clio is known for, you can see hints of this at the base of the Nightfall bead. The Cl glass is predominantly blue based but can be worked to purple and pink depending on what is used underneath. It’s hard to tell in the photo but CiM Simply Berry is a good base for this glass as well because you’ll pull more silvery, blueish purple from it, which is a nice change from always getting hot pink.
In this photo you can see the difference between Cl/Dk.a in the nightfall bead and Cl/Oda in that spiral bead. You’re going to get more hot pinks, golden salmon tones and bright purples from Cl/Oda, particularly when it is used over a light transparent base. Cl/Dk.a over a transparent base lends itself to more blue toned colours. To explain the spiral bead, read the caption to the photograph. For now, I’m just going to admire the hell out of this bead because its the best pink pop I’ve seen without even trying to get pink!! So for those of you that struggle to get pink out of regular Clio if you have some Cl/Oda; you can get pink easily. Interestingly, what I discovered is that if you reduce and encase the Cl glass it does not strike further along unless you really blast it with heat. I mean really blast it. I had to flame anneal the “nightfall” bead for quite some time as it is pushing 4in long by 1/2in thick and the colour didn’t change. So, I’m pretty sure that the colour you develop in the flame will stay if you have to garage your bead for a while. Of course you’ll have to test this out with your kiln, but I’m fairly certain you will not lose the encased opalescent effect if you have to garage for a while.
Which brings me to my last hint with the Cl Glass, make shards with it. Particularly with Cl/Oda. I used a base of Vetrofond Pale Transparent Green and smeared and dotted Cl/Oda over it and as you can see, I got a very pretty and very reflective salmon gold toned effect when I reduced the shard. I made a shard with Effetre clear and Cl/Oda hoping I’d get that pink, but I didn’t. It was reflective gold. I really like the Vetrofond PTG base the best. I’m not an expert at shard blowing by any means and I was able to get something wonderful out of it. So those of you that are amazing at making shards, I hope you go to town with it. I did make a bead with the shard but as luck would have it I forgot that you can’t encase CiM Canyon De Chelly and I got an incompatibility crack through the half of the bead that is encased, booger. But, for your viewing pleasure here is the cracked bead I made with some really tiny pieces of shard.
The shard pieces were extremely heavily reduced and holy moly they look just amazing (in my opinion). I can’t wait to practice my shard making more so I can make bigger and thinner shard pieces to wrap completely around my beads. The best thing about this shard is even the sections that just had a tiny bit of Cl/Oda when hit with a reduction flame properly the Cl/Oda fumed the whole shard and it lustred up. I’m really happy with how this shard turned out and apart from the crack, I really like the bead. I’ll probably make it again and obviously NOT encase Canyon De Chelly.
I would love you to share your shard bead pictures with me, because I’m a complete novice with the technique and would love to see what an expert can do. Feel free to drop me a line and direct me to your auctions, web page or facebook profile.