Friday, December 16, 2011

Hollow Vessels

Ah well, it has become too cold to work out in the Glassebo for the time being. When your fingers get numb, and you can see your breath when your face is a foot away from the flame...  it's time. I'm just glad I was able to get my last couple of projects finished. For the "Holiday Ornaments" swap, I decided to make tree-light inspired Hollow Vessels. 

Making Hollow Vessels is a bit like making a coil pot, but out of glass. You coil a thin string of glass off the end of the mandrel and build it out in a bubble shape. If you do it right, you don't get any gaps in the layers. Once you close of the end and then heat it evenly, it does a neat puffing thing as the air in the bubble expands.  It took a few tries, but I got the hang of it. 

This was my first successful Hollow Vessel. You can really see the hollow in it in this picture, but in person, it's a very dark glass. 

I also learned to make the wire-wrapped dropper and chain for this project. Green went nicely. 

But, red was the winner! These were the charms I sent out.

I started playing around to see what I could do with beyond "lightbulb" shapes.  Decorating is going to take more practice, but this is the largest, most hollowest vessel I was able to make. 

And finally, a proper Hollow Bead. This is made by coiling up two disks, spaced near each other on the mandrel, and then joining them. The hole goes all the way through!  I was hoping that the dark glass  in the center would let enough light through to show that it's transparent purple, but no such luck. Still I'm happy with my efforts.  


  1. I had no idea they were hollow! I am so happy to have one. The blue one is really lovely too.

  2. I'm glad you like it Rhea! Some of them are more hollow than others, but if you were inclined, and could get it through the narrow neck, you could put a few drops of something in there. I just bought larger mandrels to make vessels with wider necks, when I get back out to the torch.