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Flame August 2017

Find us at


Your committee

Colette Russ Debbie













Joy membership@gbuk.org

In this issue … Torchlight On… by Tricia Laver…..Pages 6-7

Flame Off 2017…………Page 9-12

Focal beads……..Page 13 - 14

Make a tornado bead……..Page 13 - 14

GBUKcompetition winners 2017……..Page 17

Beyond Beginners class…….Page 18 Gay Massender

Upcoming events……Page 21

GBUKmarket www.gbukmarket.org As a member you are entitled to a shop front where you may list your lampworked goods. You will need to register for a shop and wait for an administrator to check your membership is up to date before your shop is activated.

Do make use of it, share it, advertise it, drive customers to look at the only selling site devoted to lampwork from lots of sellers (members).

Promote your shop and sell your beads – it’s there for you as long as you are a member. Have a read through the terms and conditions to see what you can sell. We want to promote lampwork in its many forms and uses and don’t want it to be used for other types of sales so we will be keeping an eye to make sure that’s all that’s being sold. There may still be bugs and issues so please let us know if you come across any.

Election results You may have noticed you didn’t receive a ballot paper to vote for your favourite GBUK committee member. There’s a good reason for that - none of the committee posts was contested, so the only real change was that Scarlet Leonard stepped down as webmaster (thank you Scarlet for all your work over the years you have been on the committee) and Susan Gothard has taken her place. Scarlet isn’t abandoning us entirely, she will still be around, propping us up in all the right places, as an ordinary committee member.

Annual Competition 2018 Each year Glass Beadmakers UK (GBUK) holds a lampwork competition. One category, jewellery, is open to non-members with the criteria that the jewellery must contain lampwork beads. The theme for 2018 is ‘Steampunk’. The closing date is 28th February 2018. The competition is judged at Flame Off, an annual extravaganza for all things lampwork. Entries must be sent to the competition organiser, and are held as part of the GBUK Collection for one year, after which the pieces are returned to the creator or sold in aid of GBUK, whichever the creator chooses. Full details can be found on the GBUK website www.gbuk.org

GBUKmembership Keep an eye out for reminder emails when your membership is due to expire - or sign up for automatic renewals through Paypal.

Torchlight On… Tricia Laver I started my glass journey in 2012. From a very early age I remember my Mum taking me with her to join friends ,one evening a week, to craft and chat. That’s where I picked up lots of different skills, learning from each of the women. I was making jewellery when I had my first taster lampwork lesson and, although I enjoyed it, when I was told the setup costs, which ran into several thousands of pounds, I decided I couldn’t warrant such a large outlay so I didn’t think much more about it. I then went to Hobby Craft fair at the NEC and I must admit I spent most of the day watching Emma Green make penguins and I was hooked. I bought a starter kit from Tuffnell Glass and came home nervous but happy I could do this for less than £200 ha ha. Little did I know at the time how invested I would become. I had turned one of the spare bedrooms into a craft room but since my mum had passed I had found it difficult to get back to any of the craft work I had previously done with her. The glass was something new and so I cleared space for the hothead torch and my limited amount of glass.

To be honest I was still very nervous as I had only had a couple of hours on a taster lesson and didn’t really know much at all. I decided to sit and pull stringers with each of the glass rods to get some confidence and learn a bit about how the glass moved when heated, but other than some very rudimentary spacer beads I didn’t really make anything more.

Everything sat gathering dust until a few months later I went to my first Flame Off at Silverstone. I had a little play on the torches and watched one of the demo’s and this time I was properly hooked. I bought one of the Lush kits from Martin Tuffnell and got it all set up at home.

I had a table at a Monthly craft fair and started to include some of my glass beads to see how they were received and was pleasantly surprised when people fell in love with my owls, snowmen and penguins. Unfortunately following another death in the family and with a diagnosis of MS I had to give up doing the craft fairs. As I continued torching I soon outgrew the small area I had given myself in the bedroom and decided I needed a larger space. I bought a garden studio and thought I would have loads of room in there for all my craft and glass supplies. That area is now stuffed full and is badly in need of a declutter but I keep my torching area clear so I can carry on.

In 2014 I was diagnosed with breast cancer and for me the chemo brain meant I had to leave melting glass for a while. During this time my Dad died and I decided to spend the small amount of money on more glass equipment and by the late summer of 2015 I got back to melting again.

I have managed to attend every Flame Off since that first one at Silverstone and have taken some amazing classes since I started. Last year I think I did almost every class that was run at Tuffnells. I got bitten by the boro bug once I had done a jellyfish class with Weelaine. I now use this glass to make memorial beads and pendants and I am experimenting with inclusions of soil and sand. I have been extremely lucky to have had some wonderful teachers but I haven’t really discovered my style yet so I am taking the time to practice and develop my skills this year. I’m hoping my style will soon show its self but until then I will continue to enjoy my journey of discovery.

Glass By Trisha on Facebook Glassbytrisha@btinternet.com

Flame Off 2017 So that’s it over with for another year. This year the format had been tweaked in a couple of ways, we’d love to hear your views on it - the highs, the lows (if any!) And the absolute highlights. New this year were the taster classes, held over the course of both days, and included complementary classes in silver and ceramics. Those lucky enough to get places thoroughly enjoyed themselves and it added extra, more affordable dimension to the mix. The traders were altogether in the same hall, bringing back the flavour that was so popular at Towcester. It provided the perfect shopping area with lots of goodies for sale. GBUK had its usual stand with the annual competition entries on show. These were blind judged by Jennie, Manda and Sabine. We also had the latest journal for our members and, new for this year, a GBUKtotebag as a thank you for supporting us. These are also available for sale on the GBUKwebsite if you want another or as a gift for a lampworking friend.

This was the tenth Flame Off and, to mark the occasion, GBUK planned a few surprises for Martin and Teresa to show our gratitude for producing such a fantastic event. First was a cake… …then came a photo collage ….

… and finally, but definitely not least, was a collection of beads and sculptures kindly donated by past Flame Off artists.

JC Herrel

Helen Gorick

Amanda Muddimer

Gay Massender Madeline Bunyan Julie Fountain

Glenn Godden

GBUK win-a-class Everyone Remembers Their First Time . . . . By Christiana Hancox It was so much fun! I'm talking about my first Flame Off, of course. So much to see, so much to do, and endless talk of glassy things with other addicts. My husband always says any similarity to heroin is quite incidental! As is always needing just a little more glass. Never having been before, I didn't know what to expect. Anticipation was high. Forward planning was needed - classes booked, accommodation reserved, and the route from West Cornwall mapped out carefully. It is often said that anticipation is half the fun, and for weeks before, just the thought of the fun ahead gave me a thrill. Melting glass in the garage - sorry, my studio - can sometimes feel a little isolated, so the thought of meeting lots of like-minded people, and seeing experts demonstrating new-to-me skills - in the flesh, was, indeed, very thrilling. Whoohoo! Excitement led to a restless night before the day, but the weather was lovely; my husband got us to Uttoxeter Racecourse in good time, and I was raring to go! After parking, I assembled with everyone waiting in the hall, eager to get into the main hall to feast our eyes on all the wonderful glass goodies we could see inside!

It was hard to walk past all the colourful glass and exciting new tools, but it had to be done. Shopping could come later, after the classes with the talented tutors. The tables were all carefully laid out, with the tools and glass specified, complete with lists for future reference. Kilns up to temperature and continuous supplies of propane and oxygen at the ready. All the Tuffnell ladies and gents, in their high viz jackets, did an amazing job, making sure everything ran like a well oiled machine. Bravo! There was an excited buzz in the hall, with everyone taking classes , keen to settle down and get busy. With skilled and generous tutors from around the globe ,assembled to teach and guide, we were soon happily engrossed in watching, learning and then trying to replicate what we had been shown.

I was lucky enough to win a GBUK taster class and chose one with Sabine Frank. Sabine worked methodically and explained everything very carefully, so we could understand the logic of the sequence in which she did things. First she made murrini which would be used in different ways, and then we attempted to replicate them. Once we had all managed that, more or less, Sabine then made a gorgeous bead, using both the murrini, and making flowers with trapped bubbles. However, the crowning glory was a wonderful little frog that sat atop, admiring the flowers within! He was amazingly perfect! Sabine was meticulous with every minute detail, ensuring his thighs were properly muscular, his tiny ankles correctly bony, his little toes in proportion and his head just the right shape. It was wonderful to watch. As it was a short taster glass, although we all managed to make a bead using our murrini and trapping bubbles, we didn't quite have time to attempt the weeny frog. I've had a go since getting home - my sister says it looks like a rather frantic, wild eyed Kermit! I will be practicing! 2017 was my first Flame Off, and it was a momentous occasion. Not because of my attendance, of course, but because it was a very special anniversary. Tuffnell has been organising this wonderful event for 10 years, and Martin and Teresa were suitable surprised with a delicious cake and an amazing memento collage of pictures going back to the very beginning. Full day classes were held the day before Flame Off officially opened, followed by Taster classes on the two days of Flame Off, interspersed with demonstrations by the tutors. The demonstrations were held upstairs, away from the hubbub in the main hall, with spacious seating, expertly filmed and shown on impressive big screens to give a real bird’s eye view of the skill happening at the torch. Such skill, to which we all aspire!

Downstairs, in the main hall, tables were set up with generous numbers of torches for anyone to ‘have a go’! They were well supplied with ready dipped mandrels, glass and numbers of volunteer monitors to light torches, ensure safety, answer questions and/or demonstrate. Their high viz jerkins were very visible, and very warm! Much fun was had by many. A Silent Auction with donated items was held over the two days, with the proceeds going to Air Ambulance and RNLI. A worthwhile event, sadly marred by someone helping themselves to one of the lovely beads donated by Jennie Braid Lamb. Despite gentle cajoling by Martin, the stolen item was never returned. Shame on them! Each day there was a bead swap. It was fun to drop a wrapped bead into the goody bag, and receive a ticket, which later allowed you to dip in and take another bead out. There was much oohing, aaahing and squeals of delight when the little treasures were unwrapped. On Saturday Martin called for a minute’s silence, in remembrance of Diane East, who was clearly a much loved, and much missed, member of the glass community. Everyone fell silent, and although I never had the pleasure of meeting Diane, I think maybe she would have loved that the only sound to be heard in that minute was the gentle hissing of lampwork torches. Flame Off 2017 was truly lovely experience, which was obviously hugely enjoyed by many. Clearly very careful planning and an enormous amount of work made it a great success. Many congratulations to Martin, Teresa and all their extraordinarily hard working Team Tuffnell for such a well organised, good natured and happy event. I want to go again!

Focal beads Joy Porteous Joy Porteous

Joy Porteous

Colette Ladley

Ilsa Fatt

Colette Ladley

Ilsa Fatt Colette Ladley

Bertie Beattie

Bertie Beattie Bertie Beattie

Joy Porteous

Joy Porteous

Joy Porteous

Colette Ladley Joy Porteous

Colette Ladley

Joy Porteous

Did you know: You have your own page in the Gallery? Haven’t got one? Email webmaster@gbuk.org with a short bio and up to 5 photos. Send a link to your own website so visitors to GBUK.org can find you. Photos of winning beads from past winners of our annual competitions can be found here too. There is a members only area with tutorials and techniques - please feel free to send us any tips, tutorials or techniques to share with our members. Do you teach? Let us know so you can be included on our ‘Classes’ page so prospective students can find you. Are you on Facebook? Come and ‘like’ our page. We have lots of non-members that show great interest in the content we post - your beads will be seen by them.


Making a tornado bead Make a tube bead Encase

Add frit, if you like, and melt in

Melt the encasing in

Spiral clear glass round the tube using commercial sized stringer or a full rod

Squish the bead

Melt the clear in slowly, try not to marver it so the clear spreads out more

GBUKcompetiton winners 2018 Bead set - Bertie Beattie, theme: Song beads

Beginner - Natalie Borghese, theme: Japanese

Focal bead - Colette Ladley, theme: Japanese

Jewellery - Linda Newnham, theme: Japanese

Other - Colette Ladley, theme: Japanese

Beyond Beginners A GBUK class with Gay Massender One day course 23rd September 2017 BOOK HERE Venue Date Time Class level Cost

Tuffnell Glass Studios, Rudston , East Yorkshire, YO25 4UD Saturday 23rd September 2017 10am -5pm Intermediate with basic techniques Anybody can take part in this class although GBUK members will be charged only ÂŁ75.00, non-members will be charged ÂŁ150.00 11 students per class - ONLY 4 spaces left.

Creating Depth and Detail with Enamel and Fine Stringer

The day will begin by taking away some of the fear of using fine stringer with helpful hints and lots of practice of applying. We will use simple shapes to create illustrative beads, there really is no need to be able to draw in order to do this. We will then look at how to use enamels safely and explore techniques for layering glass and enamel to create depth and texture on our beads. We will use these techniques to create impressionistic landscapes.

Tea & coffee are provided free of charge throughout the day and there will be a 30 minute lunch break. Please bring your own eye protection; all glass , tools , mandrels and torches are provided. If you need a creation station or any other special tools please let us know before the class so we can arrange these items for you . This class is being is organized, hosted and promoted by GBUK.

www.dragonfireglass.co.uk Adding additional elements to your beads with: Mica powder and flakes


Brass foil and mesh Copper foil, leaf and mesh

Petal tools

Glass sculpting tools

Mica glitter

Upcoming events: If you have an event you would like included, please email events@gbuk.org with the details. 5th - 6th Aug

Rock, Gem & Bead , Kempton Park

10th – 13th August 2017

Festival of Quilts, NEC

12th - 13th August 2017

Rock, Gem & Bead , Harrogate

20th August 2017

The Scottish Bead Fair, Perth

26th - 27th August 2017

The Stourbridge Bead Fair

2nd September 2017

Guildford Bead Fair ,Holiday Inn Hotel, Guildford

3rd September 2017

Brentwood Bead Fair, Holiday Inn Hotel, Brentwood

7 - 9th September 2017

Hobbycrafts, Event City, Manchester

9th September 2017

Chepstow Racecourse Rock Gem 'n' Bead Show

21st - 24th September 2017

Hobbycrafts, West Point Centre, Exeter, Devon

24th September 2017

Autumn Bead Fair, Leeds, Holiday Inn Gosforth

30th September 2017

Newark Rock Gem 'n' Bead Show

1st October 2017

Beads Up North, Haydock Park Racecousre, Lancs

11-15th October 2017

Knitting & Stiching Show, Alexandra Palace, London

14th October 2017

The Big Bead Show - Sandown Park Racecourse

22nd October 2017

Beadwork Fair - Harrogate Pavillions, Harrogate

26- 29th October 2017

Hobbycrafts, SECC, Glasgow

2-5th November 2017

Hobbycrafts, NEC, Birmingham

12th November 2017

Beadwork Fair - Newmarket Racecourse

16-18th November 2017

Hobbycrafts, EXCEL, London

23-26th November 2017

Knitting & Stitching Show, Harrogate International Centre

GBUK Membership Form

First name Surname Address

Postcode Trading name (if any) Telephone number Mobile number Email address Website Membership fees and methods of payment.

Membership is valid for one calendar year from the month of joining. Overseas members: please use Paypal. PayPal


www.paypal.co.uk to email address: treasurer@gbuk.org

Cheque or postal order


payable to GBUK

Bank Transfer


Email membership@gbuk.org for details

How did you hear about GBUK? (Please tick any that are applicable) Word of mouth

I’m interested in:



At a show

Learning new skills

At a class

Writing articles

On a forum

Helping on the committee

Other (please specify)

Other (please specify)

Next issue: November 2017 Theme: Nature beads

Do you have a tutorial or article to share with members? Contact secretary@gbuk.org

www.gbuk.org Cover photo by Colette Ladley

Profile for Glass Beadmakers UK

Flame August 2017  

Flame August 2017  


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