Sunday, October 24, 2010


Bold, elegant, powerful, suspenseful and, unquestionably, DRAMATIC. Of what do I speak? Why, the color 'black', of course. Black is considered a basic color, a solid and reliable, trustworthy standard. The kind of color you turn to in order to hide those extra inches or highlight those classy curves. Black also has the ability to lend an air of completion to a look. An indispensible color, in my book.

With those thoughts in mind, I took some time to compare various blacks in the glass world. You might be of the opinion that 'black is black', but that is not so, my friend. Blacks vary widely and some are far preferable to others. As far as glass is concerned, I have used Effetre Black for quite some time. I find it to be an annoying glass color simply because it is NOT truly black. Oh, it looks black in rod form. But you try to use it in making a glass bead and, suddenly, it is deep purple. I just hate that. Unless deep purple is what I am trying to achieve, which then would make it perfectly acceptable. But if I want a true black, I look elsewhere. I have been testing out the blacks from Creation is Messy. They have two blacks to choose from, with interesting qualities in each black. In the above photo, the two beads to the far left are made with CiM Hades (another great name). CiM Hades is quite comparable to Effetre Intense Black. It is a true black. Both of these blacks are very reactive to heat. Effetre Intense Black has a tendency to 'web' out, or spread out in little spidery tendrils as the glass is heated. CiM Hades also likes to spread out into a webby pattern as it is heated. The difference is that the CiM Hades does not get as intricate in its webbing and it leaves a smoky haze in its wake. You can especially see this effect in the bead that is second from the left. The three beads from the right are all made with Effetre Intense Black. You can see that the webiness is more intricate. The bead on the far right was super-heated and the bead developed some fine green veining, too. Interesting. The Effetre Intense Black did not get the smoky haze that the CiM Hades developed. I think both of these blacks are great for achieving various organic looks, just depending on what look you want.

The second CiM black is CiM Tuxedo. This is described on the CiM website as "a regular black". Compared the the regular Effetre Black, it is far superior, in my opinion. Why? Because it is a black that is truly black. One big difference as well, the CiM Tuxedo has a tendency to spread and even web a bit when heated. The Effetre black is a bit more stable. But the Effetre Black is not really a black at all. It is a deep purple. So, if you want a real black to accent your beads, I recommend CiM Tuxedo for the job. It is in the third bead from the left in the photo. Please compare it to the CiM Hades. Very similar, minus the smoky haze. I used ivory glass as a base for all of these beads. As a result, I probably achieved more of a color reaction than you might experience using the Tuxedo glass on another color base, as ivory tends to spark color reactions.

So which black will be right for you? Well, that depends on what you want to achieve. If you want a dramatic organic look, try CiM Hades. For a true, dense and more controlled black, try CiM Tuxedo. Embrace the drama.

"A good many dramatic situations begin with screaming."- Jane Fonda

"Save your drama for the stage."- Unknown

1 comment:

  1. I'm less of a screamer! Love the black though.