How to Make Glass Mardi Gras Beads : How to Melt & Shape Glass Mardi Gras Beads

Alright, now that we have our bead with all
of our white dots covered with transparent glass, we’re going to take it back into the
flame and we’re going to heat it as evenly as possible. And you might want to turn up
your flame just a little bit. You can do this process just a little bit faster if you’re
familiar enough with the glass, to control it and make sure it doesn’t melt and slide
off the mandrel. What you want to do is heat it as evenly as possible so that the glass
melts in evenly, so that as your dots are starting to melt in and press against each
other. A distortion technique is used and the dots are formed, the center dots are formed
into diamonds. When you see maybe one of your sides over here isn’t melted quite enough,
you might want to spend a few seconds more with that side in the flame and then go ahead
and continue to heat as evenly as possible. You want to keep your eye on this a lot and
turn as slowly as you can. But again, you don’t want to keep the bead in one place because
what you’re aiming for is very evenly spaced bead dots that distort one another into diamond
shapes. So that side’s mostly done. We’re going to go heat this shoulder a little bit.
And you can see the bead starting to get a little bit soupy, so I’m going to slow down,
bring it out of the flame a little bit. Now that all the dots are melted in, I’m just
going to take it back into the flame and shape it a little bit. Again, gravity and heat makes
your bead want to be round. So all you need to do is keep turning your mandrel evenly
and keep the flame on it as evenly as possible and you will end up with a round bead again.

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