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Making a Green Bowl ‘The Emerald Path’

Fused Glass Platter

This tutorial for making an emerald green, black and white fused glass bowl uses a fused glass part sheet that I posted about earlier. The black and white part sheet was just crying out to be used.

After a bit of contemplation, no, not about my navel, about the design, I came up with a nice simple approach.

As usual, all the glass I use is Bullseye 90 COE, and the kiln shelf separator is Bullseye Thinfire paper. When fire polishing I use boron nitride spray on the shelves.

Design for You First

Fused glass platter layup

So, about the design. As I’m a fan of keeping things simple, though life doesn’t always cooperate with that, I opted for another simple design. The design would encompass a simple layup of transparent green side bars along with a main central feature from the part sheet.

The choice of emerald green resonated with me at the time, mainly because Ann and I were talking about a particular piece of jewellery she was considering making. Transparent glass, rather than opal, would further enhance the emerald theme.

Assembly of the Piece

Fused Glass Layup

For a border between the feature and the green sides I chose a light opal green with black strips for some visual separation. The overall dimension of the platter is 260 mm x 195 mm.

In these photos you can’t see the central feature because in the first firing the piece is upside down. The feature is therefore face down. The reason I fired it upside down is so the lines between each colour will stay nice and straight. Lines on the top surface often have a slight wobble after firing, simply due to the movement of the glass as it melts and fuses.

Full Fused Platter

The central feature is a piece of the part sheet and it was about 6 mm thick, so that is one piece. This was cut using my diamond saw and the sides ground on my flat lap to make them parallel and square.

Look closely and you can see the green sides consist of one layer of the transparent green with the second layer being clear. This is to help lighten the green. Two layers of green would result in a darker green then I wanted.

Fusing the Piece

This was then full fused to combine all pieces. The firing schedule I used, for my kiln, is blow.

Full Fused Platter

You can see in the photos that the lines on the top did end up a bit wobbly, just as I expected. What would have contributed to this was the fact the strips and the feature were not all perfectly sized to match, and then of course you get some movement as the glass finds a uniform thickness.

However, no need to panic as when you turn the piece over you can see the lines are all nice and straight. You can now see the feature piece I used.

Coldworking

The next thing was to cold work the edges to make them all uniform and neat. This was done on my large diamond flat lap. Instead of a square edge I wanted a rolled edge on the finished piece. To achieve this I ground the edges with a roll, as shown in the photo.

Cold Worked Platter

I did sand blast the entire piece to ensure the fire polish resulted in a nice polish all over. I find I usually get some hazing somewhere, so as a rule I sand blast pieces like this before fire polishing.

You can achieve something similar with hand diamond pads, but you will need patience. If at all possible, look into getting a sand blaster, especially if you intend to make a lot of pieces.

Of course, you may be fortunate and get no devit, but I rarely have a first fuse piece come out without some devit and at lest minor hazing. Especially on transparent glass.

Fire Polish and Slump

So this was then back into the kiln for a fire polish. The firing schedule is below.

Glass Fusing Mold

Once out of the kiln the only thing left to do was slump it into a mould. The mould chosen is one of my favourite. A simple Japanese style mould.

It’s a square mould, but the piece is a rectangle. That’s no problem as you can use your moulds in many ways. I have fused triangular pieces in a square mould and they look amazing.

Don’t be afraid to try new things with moulds that may not seems obvious.

Summary

Well, I don’t know what you think, but I love this piece. Under good lighting the emerald green make this a fantastic display piece. It gets many comments from visitors.

The contrast between the Emerald green and the black and white centre feature makes the piece a joy to look at and inspect.

I don’t have a lot of comments regards potential issues with this piece. Mainly, remember to fuse it face down first to keep those lines straight. Any questions, please ask in the comments below or through our Ask a Question form.

Fused Glass Platter

Firing Schedule

Please be aware that all kilns fire differently and this schedule may not produce the same results in your kiln.

Full Fuse – The Emerald Path Platter

SegmentRate ºC (ºF) /hrTarget ºC F)Hold (mns)
1. Release200 (392)535 (995)30
2. Bubble200 (392)675 (1247)15
4. ProcessFull805 (1481)10
5. AnnealFull482 (900)90
6. Cool83 (181)370 (707)0

Fire Polish – The Emerald Path Platter

SegmentRate ºC (ºF) /hrTarget ºC F)Hold (mns)
1. Release222 (432)535 (995)30
2. Process333 (631)720 (1328)15
2. AnnealFull482 (900)90
3. Cool83 (181)375 (707)0

Slump – The Emerald Path Platter

SegmentRate ºC (ºF) /hrTarget ºC F)Hold (mns)
1. Process167 (333)630 (1166)0
2. AnnealFull482 (900)90
3. Cool56 (133)375 (707)30

2 thoughts on “Making a Green Bowl ‘The Emerald Path’

  1. Thank you for sharing hopefully I’ll get to try this someday.

    1. Hi Jeri. All the best when you do. It’s great trying new things. I always get a kick out of seeing the result, even when it’s not as expected sometimes. In fact, sometimes the unexpected result is the motivation for something new.

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