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Lamp work beads

Venetian Lamp Work Beads

Lampworking glass is a type of glass making used to create small glass objects (glass beads, small objects) by using a fixed directional flame to melt the glass, while using glass working tools and the force of gravity to shape the piece.

It’s a very different process from glass blowing, which as the name suggests, uses a straw to inflate a glass beaker.

Lamp work beads technique dates back to the 1600s. With this method, the beads are obtained through a more complex process; the cane is not cut, but heated with a flame (in Venetian called Lume) to the point of becoming very malleable. It is then poured onto a metal wire held in the hand which is rotated and onto which an infinite number of effects and colors can be inserted.

Once upon a time the sources of heat were mostly oil lamps – hence the name “lampworking” and they required a continuous supply of breath or, later, by pedal. Today we have gas-powered torches that work in complete autonomy, leaving the artist free in the movements and safer in working.

Lampworking is the most time consuming method of making glass beads, as each art bead is created individually over a flame resulting in totally handcrafted, labor intensive, yet unique pieces.

Lamp work beads have reached an incomparable beauty over the centuries and such an importance as to rise to art so much so that in 1672 a corporation called the “Supialume” was created for these exceptional artists. (flame-blowers in Venetian dialect).

Lamp work beads come from colored glass rods and cane sections worked around a hollow metal tube. Four types of techniques are popular with these beads: blown, submerged, millefiori, fiorate. In the first, the artist uses a straw to inflate the glass until it reaches the shape desired; in the second layers of transparent or colored glass are formed. In the third, millefiori rods are placed on a glass fulcrum. Finally, in fiorate, thin glass threads decorate all around the beads.

The most commonly used material for crafting glass beads is Murano glass. Murano glass is soft, it melts at relatively low temperatures and therefore allows the bead to remain warm and malleable for longer: this makes the manufacturing process easier, also avoiding the risk of breakage.

We can find a selection of our submerged, blown, millefiori and fiorite beads on our online shop.

Please explore our online shop to explore our exquisite collection of Venetian glass beads. We offer a wide selection of beautifully crafted beads that showcase the elegance and artistry of Venetian glassmaking. From vibrant colors to intricate designs, our collection is sure to inspire your creativity and add a touch of sophistication to your jewelry creations. Visit our ONLINE SHOP today to discover the timeless beauty of Venetian glass beads.

Lamp work glass Beads

Costantini Glassbeads Store

Please visit our online shop to explore our exquisite collection of meticulously crafted Venetian glass beads. Our selection showcases the timeless beauty and intricate designs that have made Venetian glass beads renowned worldwide.