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Powder Techniques:

Layering Powder and Frit

Sifting glass powders onto a base sheet of glass is a first step in many powder manipulation techniques.  Here's one variation that uses sifted powders and frit scraps to create some interesting and unique patterns.

1.  Begin by evenly sifting a contrasting layer of glass powder onto a base sheet of glass.  Opaque powders will show off the patterns best.  The base glass can be any size or color; clear works well, too.  The layer of powder should be thick enough to completely obscure the sheet glass beneath.

2.  Place pieces of clear glass frit on top of the sifted powder. Large or mosaic sized frit work best.  You can just break up scrap clear glass if you want.  The frit should cover the entire powder layer, from edge to edge.  Don't worry if you disturb the powder as you add the frit.

3.  Place the piece in the kiln and fire.  Use your standard full fuse firing schedule; roughly 500F/300C degrees per hour to a full fuse temperature.  Soak for 10 to 20 minutes (longer will give you a flatter final surface finish), then anneal and cool as normal.

4.  When the piece emerges from the kiln, you'll find that the powder has migrated to the edges of the the small glass pieces on top, leaving behind an interesting pattern.

In this example, black powder was sifted over a white base glass, then small clear pieces were place over over the base powder.  Finally, the piece was fully fused.  This piece is by Gordon Marchmyers.
Here's a closeup of the above piece.  Note that firing to a full fuse causes the powder to migrate to the edges of the frit.

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Copyright 2006 Brad Walker.  All rights reserved.

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Copyright 2005-2006 by M. Bradley Walker.  All rights reserved.

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