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How I Started as a Lampworker

I was destined to work with glass as it is in my DNA.

I have always had a passion for glass. I inherited many antique glass pieces from my grandmother. Shortly afterward I was given a bracelet containing handmade beads and was challenged to learn how to replicate this.

When I decided to embark on this project I didn't hold back. I purchased a lamp, a kiln and lots of glass. I loved green glass so that was all I ordered. I had so much that I still have some of that glass.

I am self –taught using lampwork techniques and have been doing this for 25 years. I began by asking lots of annoying questions of lampworkers on the internet. Eventually some kind soul took pity and introduced me to my Bible – Passing the Flame: A Beadmaker’s Guide to Detail and Design by Corinna Tettinger. I have learnt much but the main thing I have realised is that you never stop learning.

My bluebird necklace. This is based on the necklace purchased by my grandmother in Murano, Italy. Everything is handmade by me, except the small seed beads. The necklace has bluebirds that flit between deep purple flowers and pink and white buds. Some lampworkers use presses to make similar flowers but all mine are individually crafted. My grandmother used to hold her necklace up to the light and say "I wonder how they made these"? Now I know and I too make these.

Photo by Drill Hall Studio, Townsville.

My aim now is to develop new products and find new markets. To this end I have established an Instagram account (barrier_reef_glass_beads) as well as revitalising my Facebook and web pages. I will also shortly be introducing more online shopping options. I would love you to join me on the next stage of my journey.


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