HEARTS aren’t just for Valentine’s Day!

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VALENTINE’S DAY is just around the corner…..so heart shaped products are especially popular right now…..but remember those heart shapes can bring smiles year round!

Hearts are perfect for birthdays, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, anniversaries, or just to say you care, as both indoor and outdoor glass artwork.

If you have scrap and are just not sure what to do with it…or are just in the mood to do something quick and fun……think about hearts! They are good for jewelry, on plates,coasters, on 2D art, as sun catchers or as garden stakes and more. Hearts also give you a fairly efficient use of your materials. See the attached sketch photo. By drawing matching triangles on strips…..as thick or thin as you want….you can make straight cuts and have nice pieces to make matching hearts from with almost no waste. And the final heart designs can be placed facing the same way or flip up and down as when you are cutting out triangles in a row. Nip off the little corners next to the curves and you have some extra frit pieces for making dots. You will have to do a bit of grinding to get the curves done cleanly….using a grinding wheel or something like a dremel with an appropriate diamond bit. You can also cut a circle into 6 matching triangles to create nicely shaped hearts with very little waste.

Carlyne Lynch did this lovely heart with a matching glass stand using vitrigraph pulls and torch worked petals.

You can fire the hearts with enamel designs or messages added, or add a frit coating to give them some texture and sparkle, or add bits and pieces of scrap for color spots or start by putting scrap together and cover it with clear and fire it to get a multi-color fun piece (see example done with dichroic scrap – an idea from Rae Williamson). Each heart done this way will be unique. For garden stakes one idea is to make an upside down “pocket” using a thicker piece of fiber that matches your stake and glue the pocket facing down, onto the back of the artwork. There are also various things available at places like Tap Plastics that you can use as tubes to hold the stakes.

Inexpensive tools that make doing heart art so much easier.
Multiple hearts are easy to cut out with little wasted glass.

Sometimes doing something fun and easy like hearts can get your creative thoughts going in a new direction……. and you have create something pretty to either sell or give as a gift! The rainbow dichroic heart below has fine frit for a soft texture and a CZ fired in. CZ’s need a half round depression drilled first.

Just some quick dichroic heart experiments by Greta Schneider. The top one is dichro scrap capped with clear, very colorful and each one will be unique.
Dichroic heart by Greta Schneider with a light coating of fine clear frit for texture and a CZ fired in for some flash. You can also get pretty designs on dichro by acid etching.
Carlyne Lynch used torch pulled bits for leaves and petals plus some scrap to make this colorful heart shaped piece. simple design….very colorful and eye-catching.
Carlyne also did this amazing heart with murrini she pulled herself. The colors show even more with light from behind.

An added piece of info: The odd curved triangle photo below isn’t for a heart project but was a test using fine clear powder on the left, powder and fine in the center and then just clear fine on the right over blue irid. I was originally thinking about making a clear coat with the powder but only I fired high enough to give the irid some surface texture. I was very surprised how much the powder, and powder-with-fine dulled the color….and it shows better in person than in the photo…but it is amazing how much better the blue irid color shows up and sparkles with just the fine on it. Just powder fired higher to go shiny and smooth would have looked nice too. Using a stencil over irid and clear coating the open areas with powder leaves a very interesting and nice pattern. If you have not ever tried that do a test with some scrap. Have fun!

Simple textured hearts in dichroic glass by Greta Schneider with a CZ fired in. Perfect for pendants
Blue irid glass with clear powder on the left, both powder and fine in the center and just clear fine on the right which remains much more colorful.