Step 3 is to make the beads!
Sometimes in this stage I need to experiment, to test new things with the glass. I might try some different shapes or some different finishes to see how they turn out. I actually enjoy this part of the process, as sometimes things go in a new direction, which is exciting. I will take photos of how the beads have turned out, and make sure I’m on track before making any more. Often, when the customer can actually see the beads, they know if we are on the right track or not!
I always heat the glass on a hot-plate, so that when it is introduced into the flame it doesn’t shatter. I then use tweezers to pick up the glass and make the beads. It’s trickier than using glass rods, but the result is worth it!