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My Most Popular Piece Isn't For Sale

I could have sold this piece many, many times.




This piece sits on my market stall but it isn't for sale. Each bead in this necklace has a fault.


There are around 40 beads in the necklace. Some of the beads are cracked, others contain a bubble, while some are an irregular shape. I reject probably around ten per cent of the beads I make because of some imperfection. Occasionally the problem arises because I try to produce a bead too quickly but mostly the problems arise because of the features of the glass. That can be infuriating, but mostly I remind myself that it is part of the wonder of working with glass.


And the problems do not occur just through the process of making the bead in the lamp. After that each bead has to be annealed (heated then cooled slowly to remove internal stresses and toughen the bead), then it has to be cleaned and finally be set with the appropriate fittings.


The bead in the centre has cracked and is why I will never sell the necklace.



The two beads in the centre were meant to be cats on a goldfish bowl. But they seemed to have spent too much time on a hot tin roof.


Even after explaining the purpose of the necklace and showing the faults some people are still unmoved and must have it. I suppose it shows that people want something unique. And I have had some very good offers for it.


My mistake necklace will never be for sale but I will continue to display it to show how much work goes into each bead and the standards that I set for anything I sell.