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Author Topic: EASY PEASY PINKS WITH KALYPSO!!!  (Read 35192 times)
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Forum Member
Posts: 94

« on: December 02, 2010, 07:02:28 PM »

Ok peeps, I have been loving using Double Helix Kalypso lately and have been using it in many of my beads. It is such an easy and beautiful glass to use, I thought I'd share my experience with you. Don't be put off by the price of DH glass, you can get some amazing results with such small amounts of this stuff, so go on you lot, get some ordered and get making PINK beadies!! Grin

So, here are a few beads I've made using Kalypso.

parade by Pegasus Lampwork, on Flickr

bombe by Pegasus Lampwork, on Flickr

sunsetblaze by Pegasus Lampwork, on Flickr

The intensity of colour will vary depending on how you work and of course your flame chemistry but I will try to make this info as simple as possible so here we go!

For the purpose of this mini tut I will make a simple round bead using a round bead shaper, I use this to shape all my round beads.

Round Bead Shaper by Pegasus Lampwork, on Flickr

1 - Ok, make a very very small lemon shaped base bead with white glass. Make it approx 2/3 the width of the round bead cavity. The shape here isn't important so don't spend time getting the perfect lemon shape. Allow bead to become cool enough to add more glass.

2 - Wrap one layer of Kalypso over the small white base bead. Make sure that the Kalypso glass covers both ends of your white base bead so that it is melted onto the mandrel. Your white base bead should be entirely covered from end to end.

3 - Now heat up your bead in one go, until it melts, this won't take long as you still should have a relatively small bead on your mandrel. Do not take it out of the flame as you are melting it, it must be heated up in one continuous go. Carry on melting until the entire bead starts to sag and droop. Of course you need to keep rotating the bead through all your melting and working! Your gather of glass should look a little transparent and bright hot. This is what we need for the Kalypso to work. Do not burn the glass, simply find the spot in your flame that will do the job without burning the Kalypso.

4 - Now, this is the important bit so pay attention!!
You now have a very hot, droopy bead that will happily drip straight off your mandrel onto your bench. Good, now take your bead out of the flame, you will be juggling to keep the glass on the mandrel by now but don't worry! Just keep rotating your mandrel to keep the glass as even as you can whilst it is cooling in the air - don't touch your marver yet, just keep air cooling the bead.

5 - Once your bead has started to cool and stiffen up and has started to turn opaque again, you can now gently roll it on a graphite marver. You won't be able to shape it much now but the glass will move a little. The shape is not important. As you marver you will see a rich amber brown colour start to appear. This is GOOD! Keep rolling the bead on the marver for approx 5 seconds to cool the bead some more. Now you need to check if your bead is cool enough so find a really dark spot (under the bench) and pop your bead in the dark spot. You are looking for the point at which all the glow has disappeared from the bead. If it is still glowing dimly, just wait until you see it go. Once you get to this point you are ready to strike the glass.

6 - Put your bead back into the flame carefully by flashing it in and out at the top of your flame. If it has cooled too much it may explode so duck when you do this bit!! It shouldn't expolode but if it does, you have cooled the bead too much so try again with another bead. It won't take you more than 2/3 beads to work out the point at which your bead is cool enough to strike but not too cool that it will explode. Expect that you will have this happen, it's how we all learn! Ok, the bead now needs to be struck a little. Once your bead has decided not to explode.........gently pass your bead through the normal working part of your flame. Waft it in and out slowly, you want to see that rich amber brown colour turn a little darker. I usually waft in and out 5/6 times until I see a darkening of colour. Once you see this colour take your bead out of the flame and adjust your flame to a reduction flame, ideally turning down the oxygen as we don't want a huge bushy violent flame! We now need to add a little lustre onto your bead by reducing it very slightly. Waft your bead through the reduction flame 2-4 times, until you see the very start of a shine on the bead. Once you see this sheen appear waft through again just once and then encase your bead straight away with clear glass, making sure your base bead doesn't go into your flame or it will lose the reduction sheen.

7 - Once you have encased the bead do not melt it in. Take you bead back to your dark spot and watch it until all the orange glow has gone. As soon as this happens, you can melt in the clear encasing very gently at first. You need to just warm up the bead first very slowly until you see the glow appearing, once you see this go ahead and apply more heat to fully melt in the clear glass.

8 - When you have enough heat in your bead, press it into the round bead shaper and form your round bead. Try to make a good shape in this one go if possible. Now, very important, once you've done with the shaping take your bead again into your dark spot and watch for the glow to go. Once it has gone, very gently heat the bead and fire polish any marver/press marks away. If you need to continue shaping your bead just follow this rule. Gently reheat, press, cool to no glow, gently reheat and pop in the kiln. VOILA! Your finished bead should look a lovely pinky shade with a very little hint of blue iridescence. Your bead will actually strike a little in your kiln and will end up a deeper colour than when it went in, this should develop some nice deep pinks and maybe a little amber/red colour.

PHEW!! Shocked
That all sounds a little long winded but trust me on this, when you follow this process it is very simple indeed.

If you try this out you might at first get one of three problems.

1 - A nice deep amber red bead with no pinks at all and no iridescence. If so this means that you haven't put enough reduction on your bead so try a little more next time.

2 - A nice pale blue irridescent bead. If so this means that you put too much reduction on your bead so try a little less next time.

3 - A very pale pinky blue. If so then you haven't cooled your bead enough before returning it to the flame and/or you have reheated the bead too fast/hot.

Kalypso is both a striking and reducing glass so each time you heat up the bead you must make sure that it is really cool before you do. This process is what is called striking. You will retain all your lovely colour if you follow this rule. The amount of reduction you apply to Kalypso needs only be very little as it's colour comes mainly from the striking sequence.

I will pop back again and add some tips and ideas for enhancing your Kalypso to get some really beautiful effects and colours. Once you've got to grips with the basics, you won't look back, I promise!!!


Forum Member
Posts: 1674

This is me!

« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2010, 03:57:06 AM »

Briliantly written Bev

I've got colours with a very similar method - I didn't heat it all in one go, but I shall try that method next time I'm brave enough to venture out.
But totally agree with the cool encasing - this really works well with Clio too!

Here's pictures of beads I've made

Kalypso Groove by Glittering Prize - Trudi, on Flickr

Guinevere's Gift by Glittering Prize - Trudi, on Flickr

I'll post more when I've tried the super heating!
« Last Edit: December 03, 2010, 04:09:06 AM by Trudi » Logged

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Posts: 1674

This is me!

« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2010, 12:30:00 PM »

ok dokey

so here are the ones made last night

Kalypso Nuggets (1) by Glittering Prize - Trudi, on Flickr

Followed Bev's instructions . ostly - I realised that I didn't strike them first after cooling - wafted them in the reduction flame. But they are a gorgeous deep pink/purple with blue flashes

This bottom picture was what I was getting before

Nuggets Kalypso by Glittering Prize - Trudi, on Flickr
(back ones are clio and front 2 are Kalypso )

Temperature's rising
Forum Member
Posts: 683

Glass in pocket

« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2010, 03:27:41 PM »

(Disclaimer - my bead release broke on each of these - I was in too much of a hurry to play and used mandrels that had been dipped too long ago Embarrassed)

I'm just posting these to show willing - I've been struggling to photograph them (as usual) - this has a diagonal sweep of Kalypso - front and back...much pinker irl, with some blue
and purple mother of pearl (and dot of R pink lady, I think). The next one is just kalypso encased in E 006 which is lovely at the moment. Colours much nicer in real life again, purples, blues and some pink. Last one sort of dark purplish-brownwhich is intriguing but not what I intended! Will print out Bev's instructions and try again Smiley.

Forum Member
Posts: 325

« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2011, 06:26:27 AM »

Mine got here on Tuesday when I was at work, these were made Tuesday evening and annealled yesterday. I forgot step 1, make a white base bead, so these are just clear over Kalypso. Still nice but I need a bit more practice to get the pinks to really ping!

Kalypso BHBs by HelenPetersBeads, on Flickr

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Senior Forum Member
Posts: 1251

Worth my weight in glass....

« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2011, 06:42:41 AM »

Kalypso over white with goldstone frit encased in 006 with SIS ends

IMG_0128 by Kaz ~ CheekyCherubDesigns, on Flickr

She's made of real glass. She got real real emotion. But my heart laughs I have that same sweet devotion!
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Posts: 886

« Reply #6 on: January 22, 2011, 01:26:45 PM »

I haven't used my Kalypso much, but tried it recently in a ring cab:

Cabochon with silver glass and murrini by JulieHB, on Flickr

Julie xx

                            My Webbie - My Flickr
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Posts: 325

« Reply #7 on: January 24, 2011, 02:24:14 PM »

I have to show this, I'm so proud of it!

Kalypso BHB necklace by HelenPetersBeads, on Flickr

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Posts: 1145

Queen of Buttons :0)

« Reply #8 on: January 27, 2011, 06:29:58 AM »

I have no idea if donkeys like strawberries!  Roll Eyes

Bev - wow, thank you!  I had a silver glass day yesterday and decided it was time to break out the Kalypso.  I followed your instructions to the letter and I'm thrilled with the result!  There were a lot more cooling steps in your method than I would ever have done - thank you!

Hot Kalypso! by LushLampwork, on Flickr

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