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Learn to Make Glass Beads - Lampwork Taster Sessions in Kings Langley

Duration: 4 hours

Price: £80

Run by: Kristy Smith
at DragonBright Ltd

Office 2 Unit 8 Langley Wharf
Railway Terrace
Kings Langley

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About the Course

If you have ever wanted to melt glass, Lampwork provides a great introduction as it can be picked up relatively quickly, while sharing a number of characteristics with much larger scale glass blowing. It is a hugely versatile medium, and the lampwork technique can be used for a lot more than just beads; however we begin with beads as they are the simplest shape to start with and are made on a metal rod, which provides support for the glass and shapes the hole through the middle.

This 4 hour taster session is suitable for anyone (over the age of 13) who wants a quick taste of the craft - 4 hours (with at least 30 mins break in between, total time 4.5 hours) is just long enough for most people to feel like they are starting to 'get' it. A taster session makes a great present for someone who doesn't need more 'stuff' but enjoys learning new skills. The fee includes all the required materials to make a few beads. The exact number of beads made will depend on the individual, but the average is between 5-10. The beads you make during the session will be annealed overnight in the kiln, and will be posted to you afterwards, or can be collected if you prefer.

If you think you might like to set up a hobby lampwork station at home, I'd recommend booking between 2-4 extra hours after the taster session to discuss the technical and safety aspects of a lampwork set up, to touch on the technical differences between types of glass, mention essential vs 'nice to have' tools, as well as learning a few extra techniques at the torch and practising earlier techniques. I generally recommend splitting up the total of 6-8 hours over 2 days, as it can be quite intense and surprisingly tiring.

Courses can generally be arranged at a time to suit you during normal working hours, or on Saturday mornings. The studio access is through a shop, so we are limited to their opening hours. The space is most suited to individual 1:1 lessons as there is only one torch and the lampwork area is quite small, but I am happy to have 2 students sharing the experience if they wish - the price is the same for one or two students sharing. During a shared lesson, you will of course make fewer beads, but watching others can also be a good learning experience.

I provide tea and coffee (and biscuits if desired!). If you are coming over lunch time, you will need to bring a packed lunch, or perhaps order food for delivery. There are sandwich vans which come around during the day, but their schedule is not predictable enough to rely on. There is a small fridge, kettle and microwave available which you are welcome to use.

My studio is up a flight of stairs, however I do have a mobile torch for demonstrations which I would be willing to bring to you if you are unable to climb the stairs. This will incur a small extra charge for mileage, and is dependant on you having a space which is safe and suitable to use the torch in. Please feel free to contact me if you wish to discuss this option.

I am fully insured to work with both teens and adults; however when booking a session for a teenager under the age of 18, please note that I will need to meet with a parent or carer briefly before the start of the session to sign an indemnity form. If desired, one parent or carer is welcome to stay during the lesson, although the space is not large and contains other workshop equipment, so it is not suitable for multiple people, younger siblings etc.

If booking with a CraftCourses voucher for part or all of the course fee, please fill in the contact form above or telephone us. Your voucher code must be provided at the point of booking.

Want to review this course?

I spent a fantastic Friday with Kristy learning some of the basics of lampwork to make glass beads. Kristy is an excellent tutor, and clearly has lots of experience and amazing enthusiasm.

After the introduction and basic (common sense) safety information, we began with a demo, followed by straight into my first bead. The day progressed with interspersed demos of new techniques, and chances to try them out. regular breaks were important, as it requires very intense concentration.
I finished the day by making some to my own design, based on the techniques I had learned.

I had a brilliant time, learnt some new skills, and am considering getting some basic equipment to carry on at home.

Would thoroughly recommend this course and tutor :)

- - #11594

I was given the lampwork session as a birthday present and thoroughly enjoyed it. Very tempting to buy a kit and have a go at home! Kristy is a great teacher and very patient.

- - #11041

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Course Start Dates

Course dates are flexible; please get in touch for the next available date.

  • Accessible by public transport
  • Teen friendly

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