What Is Lampwork?


Author: Richelle
Published: 10 Dec 2021

Lampworking and Glass

The art of lampworking includes beads, figurines, marbles, small vessels, Christmas tree ornaments, and much more. It is used to create glass models of animals and plants. Soft glass and borosilicate glass are the most common types of glass used in lampworking.

Neon signs and lampwork used leaded glass tubing, and many US lampworkers used it. Colored glass tubing that was used in the neon industry was used to make small colored blown work and colored glass rod, compatible with lead and soda-lime glasses, was used to ornament both clear and colored tubing. The use of soft glass tubing has been fading due to environmental concerns and health risks, but mainly due to the adoption of borosilicate glass by most lampworkers, especially since the introduction of colored glasses compatible with clear borosilicate.

The tools used in lampworking are similar to those used in glassblowing. The working surfaces of lampworking tools are often made of graphite because of its resistance to sticking to molten glass and its ability to endure high temperatures. Steel is used where strength is required.

The wood used for handles of lampworking tools is mostly fruitwood. A higher coefficient of friction is desired on working surfaces that are made of brass. A lampworker must plan how to build a piece after designing it.

The lampworker slowly puts glass rod or tubing into the flame to prevent cracking. The base bead is formed when molten glass is wound around a steel mandrel. The bead can be easily removed from the mandrel with the help of the anti-fluxing bead release agent.

Glass Flameworking

The art of glass lampworking is thousands of years old. It spans continents from Africa to Asia. The last 50 years have seen a resurgence of lampworking.

It requires less tools and materials than other glass techniques, and you can make everything from decorative beads to small hollow vessels. A torch is used to melt and shape glass. The glass is formed by blowing and shaping with tools and hand movements after it is heated to a molten state.

It is also called flameworking. The Venitian Renaissance in Italy is where the traditional glass beads come from. The oldest known glass beads are thought to be from the fifth century BC.

In the 14th century, lampworking became a common practice in Italy. The world's capital of glass bead was in Murano. The technique of oil lamp heat is what makes it known as bead making.

hollow work is used to create vessels and other forms. There are two ways to approach hollow work. You can either start with hollow tubing and heat to make it into a shape you want, or you can make a small steel blowpipe and build the neck of the vessel right on the tube.

Lampwork Beads

lampwork is very popular in both fashion circles and craft circles because it can be simple or wild. There are a lot of interesting lampwork beads that can be used to adorn a lot of things.

Lampwork is popular in both fashion and craft circles because it can be as simple or as wild as the creator wants it to be. You can use lampwork beads to make a variety of things, from baskets to draperies, and even napkin rings.

The lampwork beads are made by heating glass with a blowtorch and then working it into different shapes. The look of a lampwork bead is usually glossy and ornate, but the colors and styles of lampwork beads vary widely. The lampwork technique is based on ancient Italian and French methods and is used to make glass ornaments.

A spotted look is created if tiny bits of melted glass are added to the first piece. There are designs that can be made with a pointed tool. The creation of unique bead shapes and texture can be accomplished by blowing on the hot glass or using a glass working tool.

Some lampwork bead artists add metal to the glass beads, while others stretch the melted glass to create ears for animal bead shapes, or to create formations such as stars and suns. Sometimes hot glass can crack or break, so it's important to experiment and practice. Adding transparent glass on top of the beads can create a beautiful effect that looks similar to thick, clear glass on top of a piece of art or a photograph.

Glassworking and lampwork

Many of the traditional techniques and processes are still in use today, and have existed for thousands of years. Glassblowing and lampworking are two of the main forms of glasswork. The two artforms may seem similar for those who are not in the world of glassworking.

The demand for laboratory glassware grew during the 16th and 17th century and the development of beakers and flasks was needed in science today. Glassworking techniques are intertwined throughout history, but each has its own processes, tools, and finished outcomes. Smaller tools are used to make delicate items like beads, which are not produced by lampworking.


The term lampwork was used hundreds of years ago to mean "glass melting in a flame" and was a reference to the glass being heated over a lamp.

Glass Annealing

The artist must anneal their glass artwork after the artwork is complete. The chance of the glass breaking is greatly reduced by Annealing. The kiln can reach excessive temperatures.

Melting Colorful Glass

The process involves melting colorful glass on a torch. The bead is formed by either a copper wire or metal rod.

Glass Flame Working Classes for 3-Hour Tasters

You can find upcoming Glass Flameworking classes here. Due to safety concerns surrounding COVID-19, all upcoming classes are in-person with strict health and safety policies in place for students, faculty, and staff. You must review all policies before you register.

3-Hour Tasters are a great way to explore a new art form without the commitment of a full course. After a basic introduction to melting and shaping borosilicate glass with an oxy-propane torch, you can make small glass marbles, mushrooms, or hearts. Give a gift of creativity or meet new friends with a taster.

Lab sessions are only available to Crucible members. Practice the skills you learn in class. A lab monitor will be present to answer questions, manage safety, and provide overall support during lab sessions.

You are free to come and go whenever you please, but you must provide your own materials. A torch is used to melt and shape glass. The glass is formed by blowing and shaping with tools and hand movements after it is heated to a molten state.

It is also called lampworking. The same works are done by flameworking and lampworking. The term lampworking was first used when Venitian glass workers heat their glass over an oil lamp.

A kiln for the beads

Most beads are not needed for a kiln. You will need a kiln to control the cooling rate and anneal the beads. You can make a lot of smaller beads at the same time if you have a friend with a kiln.

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