Rock beads are small glass beads that have been used in the manufacture of jewellery, objects and even for weaving clothing since time immemorial. They are made from glass cane cut into small pieces. The best known are the pearls of the Czech Republic and Japan.
Rock beads are very easy to recognize because they are small glass beads that can be transparent or opaque and colored.
They are simple but all made on the same template in order to be easily associated with each other. 2mm diameter is the most common size.
A small hole in the centre allows them to be threaded onto nylon or cotton threads. The origins of rock beads are very old and they have been used in jewellery making for centuries.
How are they made?
Rock beads are glass beads that are made from molten glass. Originally the manufacturing method was rudimentary because a small earth cone was covered with a drop of molten glass. When the drop cooled down, it was easily detachable from its base, keeping the hole footprint. Current techniques are much more modern. With the help of specially designed machinery, the glass page is stretched and moulded to produce long glass tubes. Then these tubes are cut to obtain small cylinders that will be coated with a mixture of sand and lime and then placed and heated to 800 degrees in a rotating barrel so that they round out. During this delicate passage, the pearls acquire their shape and also their final colour. Then, they are mixed in another barrel with bran in order to obtain their brilliance.
I have always loved embroidery and especially gold thread. Sewing rock beads on the linen canvas allows me to both paint and embroider.
The meticulousness required by this technique is similar to a form of meditation for me.
I don’t follow any previously prepared schematics. I place the first bead and will spontaneously leave on a movement.
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