Thursday, December 18, 2008

Tried & True: Effetre 232 Light Turquoise

Turquoise seems to be a staple color for many glass beadmakers. It's definitely one for me too, but perhaps not in the same way as many of my contemporaries.

I have a confession - and it may not come as much of a surprise to those who've seen lots of my beads. I know very little about working with metals in beadmaking. I've seen it done everywhere - and I know the simple basics - but I personally have never used any metals in making my beads, other than what's contained in the glass I use. **hangs head in shame**.

Where am I going with this? Well, as many veteran beadmakers know, metal foils and leaves work really well with the several glass colors in the green/turquoise/blue range. There's lots of info on that in places all over the web, but you're not going to see it here. Neener neener!

Seriously, I love Turquoise (specifically the light version) for an entirely different spectrum of reasons.

Light Turquoise opaque glass is probably one of the first colors I picked up when learning how to make beads. It's pretty and quirky at the same time. It's versatile and has some really interesting reactive qualities, even before you add any metals to it.

The first thing you might notice when melting a rod of Light Tuquoise is that it tends to be a bit shocky. Not overly so, but enough to where you want to introduce it to the flame slower than usual, to avoid flying shards of glass breaking away from the tip. Maybe even heat the end of your rod in the kiln or on a hot plate just to make sure.

The glass is nice and soft without being soupy, and cools neither slowly or quickly. Just your basic opaque in that manner. After you heat it up, it goes a bit greener than the rod until it cools. You may also notice a bit of color striation and even a bit of silvering or greying at the holes when it's allowed to cool. The more fuel in your flame, the more this glass will grey - this is normal for this glass because of the metals it contains. Once the glass cools, it will return to the same color as the rod, with a little bit of discoloration in places. You can easily remove the discoloration with some acid etch or even toilet bowl cleaner. (use either with caution, please!)

lt turquoise with shades of red As a base, this color is true and lovely. Shown here with layers of red flowers - you can see the color doesn't bleed or suck up most colors it's used with.

cool summer cubesHere you can see some of the color striation on these cubes, where Lt Turquoise was used as a plain base and decorated with bright green and purple raised stringers. Sometimes these striations can be mistaken for cracks in photos, so you might want to make sure to tell your customers if you're selling the beads you make.

The true bliss of this color for me is its layering capability. It layers wonderfully with many, many shades of blue, green, teal and aqua - so much so that I use it almost exclusively as a base layer for most of the transparents in the same color wheel section.

Espresso DolceTurquoise looks delicious with brown, and is seen here as a base layer for Pale Aqua transparent glass, giving off a nice robin's egg blue effect. This color combo is really popular for me, and I adore doing it.

When you melt encased brown stringer on to the Turquoise, you are awarded with a nice organic look when the Turquoise darkens a bit.

Limelight 2Of course, there's nothing better than bright aquas and vivid greens - and you can pair them by using turquoise as the base. Layering some of the more yellow based greens over Turquoise really brightens them up almost to a neon look.

limelight florals

Stephanie 2Additionally, different colors will give totally different looks - you can't see the turquoise here because it's layered under the Teal - Both Light and Dark Teal transparent glasses look great over Turquoise.

Not to mention the newer and even more beautiful CIM Leaky Pen, shown below over Light Turquoise.

I'm so glad this is one of Effetre's basic production colors, because it's one that will remain in my arsenal forever.



  1. Just love the beads you have here! Thanks for sharing :o)

  2. Great combos. Thanks