Thursday, December 18, 2008

First Impression & Testing: CiM Cranberry Pink 926-1

What a lucky duck I am! I get to test the new Cranberry Pink from Creation is Messy. The next few posts will be about the ongoing test - posted in several parts because there are five different batches of this pink so far.
I'll start with the rods - there are five in the picture , starting on the bottom-left they are numbered 926-1 - 926-5 as seperate batches. The rods themselves are really pretty - ranging from an almost opaque deep burgundy to a lovely saturated medium pink. I'm pretty sure that the vendors are only carrying a couple of these batches - I know number 3 (the really dark one) isn't being sold yet for sure. The color in general is still in testing phase and only available from a couple of different sellers.

So far, I have only tested number 926-1 - the lightest of the bunch (lower left). I was so incredibly excited to test this particlar batch - the rod is so pretty and I was really hoping it stayed that color. Alas, when I pulled the swatch, it was not the case. This version of Cranberry Pink pulled out a very streaky, somewhat cloudy color that ranged from a pale pinky lavender to an orangy-cloudy pink with streaks of fuschia.

The consistency of this rod is actually really nice - and at first it really acted a lot like the lighter versions of Rubino. However, with further melting, three things became clear. First, this version of Cranberry strikes a lot faster and easier than most versions of Rubino I have used. Second, you have to be a lot more careful that you don't burn this delicate color out. Third - it reduces like mad. Even a slightly higher amount of fuel in your flame creates that cloudy reduction effect that a lot of Rubino has. Is this coming from a high concentration of gold, maybe? I'm not sure. So keep your flames oxidized if you don't want the reduction to start coming through.

After making a couple of spacers, I could really see the "butterscotch" effect that a lot of people have been talking about - which I suspect is just the color reducing very, very easily. While Rubino does this to come degree, Cranberry does this a lot more readily, and that can really be heartbreaking. Faded orange clouds immediately coated the strong, saturated pink shade, and it was a lot of hard work to keep the pink without the orange, with only minimal success.

The nice thing is that this first version of Cranberry encased pretty well (I used Vetrofond Super Clear here). No cracks appeared. However, encasing does wash this color out quite a bit. At least this is only the lightest version - I am hoping the dark versions encase with brighter results.

I tried several different techniques on my test beads - I'll list them below.

This bead was made with plain clear and scrolled in a plain stringer of the 926-1, and then reduced. Talk about easy. This is one of the nicer things about this shade - it reduces quickly to a golden sheen. You can just barely see the pink underneath, and this is decidedly more golden than Rubino's more gunmetal reduction effect.

This bead was made with a base of Lauscha Cocoa and decorated with Effetre Dark Pink and the light Cranberry shade. It's then encased in clear. You can see that the darker pink flowers are the ones with the Cranberry, but they are very, very light. The nice thing is that there's no butterscotch orange in this bead. The pink struck nice and light.

This is my favorite test bead, and the one I worked the hardest on striking the pink and keeping it bright. The base is Effetre Silver Pink (a very nice cream color) and the raked dots are Effetre Dark Pink and the Cranberry. The bumps are Cranberry as well. There's only a little butterscoth on these - but mostly a nice, muted pink shade. I really like this one. It's not as bright as Rubino, but the dots did "bloom" like Rubino - spreading out nice and even on the base. I honestly thought the pink would streak and sink into the base, but it didn't - a pleasant surprise.

The last bead is a cube made with a base of Effetre Dark Pink, layered with Cranberry and encased in clear. A stringer of Lauscha Cocoa encased in clear is scrolled onto the surface, and then the bead is finished off with raised florals in Dark Pink and Cranberry. The Cranberry does butterscoth and fade just a bit in both the base and on the flowers. This is actually not bad - it's not like Rubino, but is pretty in its own right. The color did strike under the casing pretty easily, so that's really a nice trait.

Sooo - my preliminary opinion is that even though a lot of people are looking at this color as a clone of Rubino, just made by a different company, I don't think it is at all. It's in the same general class, I think - transparent pink with lots of interesting effects - but it's really its own color. I'm really anxious to try the rest of the batches - I'll post here when I have more test results!

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