I love using inclusions with the Fuseworks Microwave Kiln. A little while ago I wrote about bubble inclusions, you can read about that here. Some of my favorite fused glass inclusions are organic inclusions because they make such beautiful pieces. Organic materials such as leaves, thin vines and feathers will burn away, leaving their impression behind in the glass resulting in a fossil-like effect.
There are a few guidelines that you should stick to when including organic materials in your fused pieces:
Make sure you only fuse very thin materials - like the thickness of a leaf – or you just won’t get your desired effect
Make sure you only use dry materials; if the object is wet, it will not burn off
Use contrasting or bright colors to make the image stand out
Do not use this method to fuse plastic, paper, thick wood, food, hair, fabric or string, and be careful not to fuse in-organic materials as they may be toxic!
It only takes a few simple steps to create these beautiful pieces in your Fuseworks Microwave Kiln:
Spray inexpensive hairspray on a small piece of fern or leaf.
Dip material into glass powder and place it on a sheet of kiln paper on the base of the kiln.
Cover it with one layer of glass.
Put the kiln in a microwave and cover base with the lid. Fuse at the following temperatures: 600 watt microwave (50%) for 2 minutes, 960 watt microwave (80%) for 2 minutes, 1200 watt microwave (100%) for 30 seconds.
Remove from microwave and allow cooling with the lid on for 45 minutes.
There are so many beautiful creations you can make with a Fuseworks Microwave Kiln. I can honestly say that most of what I have ever made and loved was discovered or created on accident! With that said I can tell you that many of my creations have included tiny bubbles, most of them I didn’t want. I will let you know how to avoid the bubble and how to purposely create them as well.
Accidental bubbles are usually caused by two conditions, pre-existing bubbles in the glass and air becoming trapped during the fusing process unplanned glass movement (especially when the glass is enclosed) and unusual glass placement are usually the culprits here.
It is hard to rid the bubbles that come from the first condition since they are inherent but the second can definitely be prevented.
If you notice that some of the pieces tend to roll during the fusing process you can deter this by mixing 3 parts water to 1 part glue and adhering the glass together – if you do this, make sure you allow the glue to dry overnight! The other fix is making sure that you do not have a lot of weird overlapping, what I mean is if you are layering two pieces and one piece is larger than the other, make sure that you layer the larger piece on the bottom so air doesn’t get trapped when the pieces fuse.
Now to the good stuff! How can you fuse bubbles on purpose? The answer is a very common household item- Baking soda! Follow the steps below to trap bubbles in glass.
Mix an 80/20 solution of water and baking soda (that’s 80% water 20% baking soda) in a spray bottle.
Spray the base glass with the solution and allow to dry thoroughly and place your top layer over the baking soda layer.
Make sure the top layer is free from any baking soda solution or you will incur a problem called devitrification (or a scummy white discoloration) on the top of your glass.
Fuse for 2 ½ minutes at 80% power for a high watt microwave or 100% for a low watt microwave.
Prep – Cut out the desired shape, soak in water for 30 seconds and slide the decal on to a prefused piece of glass – make sure the glass is completely dry before you fuse
Fire – Place the glass on a 2×2 piece of kiln paper in the center of your Fuseworks Microwave Kiln base and using the guide below – fire the glass – if your decal isn’t fused yet you will see the color and shape of your decal if it is fully fused – if not you will see a white silhouette– fire at 15 second intervals at 100% power until your glass is fully fused
WATTS POWER TIME
1200 100% 2 minutes
1100 100% 2½ minutes
800 100% 4 minutes
Cool – Let your glass cool for at least 30 minutes inside the Microwave Kiln but don’t peek or
This video will give you a good idea as to how its done.
A fun way to add interest and embellish while fusing is by mixing in combinations of stringers, millefiori, confetti and frit.
Stringers are very thin lines or rods of glass almost the size of angel hair pasta, sometimes even smaller. They are available in multiple colors and can be placed in patterns on or between glass, think patchwork, stripes, outlines or borders.
Millefiori are multicolored patterned decorative glass slices usually the thickness of glass rods or a drinking straw. Millefiori usually resemble little glass flowers, stars or pin-wheels and they can be placed between or on top of glass.
Frit is crushed 90 COE glass available in a multi-colored package, I would say frit resembles Pop Rocks or Fruity Pebbles orlittle dots that can be sprinkled over your glass surface for a neat multi-colored result.
Confetti is available in multi-colored or solid colored packages and as the name implies it’s a little bit confetti-like. It is a very thin/paper-like type of glass that you can layer to form fun random shapes.
When mixed together these embellishments produce a stunning effect.
To find Fuseworks glass fusing products near you, check out our store locator and for fun fusing projects using the Fuseworks Microwave Kiln make sure you visit our Creative Corner.