Wear your loved one close to your heart with these unique handmade beads. One of my first loves of beading was making handmade glass beads in a process called lampworking. The technique of making glass beads has been around for thousands of years.
Once glass is heated to a molten state, the glass is applied to a mandrel and shaped into a bead and decorated with tools and hand movements. It is also known as flameworking or torchworking, as the modern practice no longer uses oil-fueled lamps. It is a bit like glass blowing just on a smaller scale. It is also the perfect medium to create amazing Memorial beads for remembering your pets and loved ones.
My journey into making these types of beads came from the untimely passing of an amazing young man a few years ago. Justis was unfortunately taken from us in this 15th year of life here on Earth. Hearts were shattered in ways you never thought your heart could break and after the many prayers and tight hugs, It was the only way I could think of to help his parents and extended family through that extraordinarily hard time. While we all believe that Justis lives on every day, there is also a small comfort in being able to literally touch a part of him when the weight of missing him becomes too much.
I make each of these beautiful keepsake beads by hand, one at a time. I use a torch, and glass rods of special colored, silvered glass. First, I lay down the background glass which symbolizes the heavens and the universe, and form it into a small round bead. Then I apply a small amount of your loved ones ashes to incorporate it in with the background in small spiral designs. The final layer is a crystal clear glass encasing to magnify the contents and disperse color, as well as to permanently secure it in place. Each bead is then fully annealed in the kiln for stability and durability. The ash becomes part of the bead forever for you to wear, or carry in your pocket or purse.
I am a solo glass artist - nothing is mass produced. Each bead is lovingly made by hand and infused with reverence, good intentions, and a calm and compassionate heart as I work. I feel blessed to be able to help you along your journey with this unique keepsake remembrance. I am pleased to be able to offer you this unique and lovely way to remember your loved ones and keep them close.
If you decide to have me create your Memorial Bead, you will need to send me about a tablespoon sample of cremation ashes - double sealed in a small zip lock bag. Please mark with sharpie the owners name. Every ash sample is different. Please note that I will not be using all of the ashes that you send. I will select only the most usable ashes for the bead. When the bead is done, your bead as well as all remaining ashes will be returned to you.
Each unfinished 10x18mm Memorial bead cost $50. Bead sizes may vary slightly due to the handmade process. Unfinished means that the bead will be ready to be made into a pendant, bracelet, other jewelry project. The bead hole will be cleaned and ready to use. Options are also available for me to finish the bead into a pendant for an additional cost.
Thank you - Andrea