Introduction to Glass Beads with Mark English – October – CLASS IS FULL


Date: Wednesday, October 5, 2022 

Time: 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Prerequisite: None

CLASS IS FULL. More sessions coming soon!

Description: You’ve probably wondered, “How on Earth are glass beads made?” Here’s your opportunity to find out, and learn how to do it yourself! No experience necessary, and all materials are included. Open to students 16 years old and over.

This introductory three-hour class will cover the necessary fundamentals of making glass beads with soda-lime glass (sometimes called “soft” glass)*, using a propane and oxygen-fueled torch. Topics will include safety, body mechanics, technique, tools and equipment, the properties of glass, annealing, and glass compatibility.

Students will learn how to wind molten glass onto a mandrel, focusing on the use of gravity and heat control to achieve a well-shaped round bead. We will be using several opaque and transparent colors of glass to learn how each one can behave differently during melting. As time allows, students may also learn how to embellish the surface of their beads by adding contrasting glass frit (crushed glass), and layering dots.

This class is designed to be a fun, satisfying, stand-alone experience, but we hope you also find it to be a first step that inspires you to continue your journey of developing your glass flameworking skills. At the very least, you’ll have stories to tell about melting glass with fire, and some lovely glass beads that you’ve made with your own hands that will last forever!

All glass beads will be annealed overnight in a digitally-controlled kiln. Students will need to pick up their beads during business hours, starting the second business day after the class, no appointment needed.

Please wear closed-toed shoes, and comfortable cotton clothes that you do not mind getting dirty (no synthetic fabric, please). Students should also tie back long hair and avoid wearing dangling jewelry. Please bring your own closed water bottles for drinking (refillable at our water cooler). SGS provides the use of all tools and didymium safety eyeglasses (required) for students during class. Students will wash their hands before class.

The Flame Shop is well-ventilated. Properly-fitting face masks are encouraged during class, and may be required during demonstrations that require close proximity for viewing.

Out of stock


This class has a minimum enrollment of two students.  If the minimum is not met, the class will be canceled and the tuition refunded.  Thank you.