Gold Country Handmade
This new series on the blog will feature talented artists and artisans from all over Gold Country. I plan to bring you a diverse sampling of the talent here. I am excited to introduce my friend Pam Ferrari and Ferrari Originals as my first featured artisan.
Pam Ferrari is the artist behind Ferrari Originals. Pam began making lampwork glass beads in December of 2001 because she couldn’t find beads that she really liked. Since then, she has added fused glass, patina on copper, painting on copper overlaid with resin, and enameling to her repertoire. She specializes in making components for jewelry designers, collectors and bead lovers but she also sells beautiful one-of-a-kind pieces and can make you a custom piece.
Lampwork Glass Beads
Lampwork is a technique of heating glass with a flame until it is molten and then shaping it by blowing, turning or some other form of manipulation. I know very little about bead making so I loved seeing Pam at work in her studio. She demonstrated for me how lampwork is done and it was fascinating. When I was a kid I loved watching the glassblowers at Disneyland and this was somewhat similar.
The glass has to be heated slowly so that it doesn’t shatter.
Once it is hot and molten, it is rolled around the rod.
It is continually heated and turned as it is shaped.
Designs are added using smaller tubes of glass for different colors and tools are used to make holes, swirls, etc.
This is a bead that has had a design added.
Once the bead is finished, it must be cooled even slower than it was heated. Pam uses a digitally controlled kiln that cools the glass work over a period of many hours. This slow cooling (annealing) removes inner stresses and strengthens the glass so that it is less likely to break if dropped.
Here’s a sampling of finished beads.
More Than Lampwork
Pam originally called her business Ferrari Original Beads but when she branched out, she changed it to Ferrari Originals. Here are more samples of her other work. I am especially fond of the patina on copper technique.*
This is Pam’s latest fashioning. A special paint creates the web effect then the pieces are coated with resin.
Pam’s work has been featured in magazines. The necklace on the left was in the Dec/Jan 2014 Step by Step Jewelry Magazine. The bracelet on the right was in the July 2012 issue of Bead Trends Magazine.
Where to See Ferrari Originals
You can keep up with Pam on Facebook or through her Etsy store. Pam will be taking her show on the road in November to the 4th Grass Valley Whole Bead Show which will be held at the Nevada County Fairgrounds. You can email Ferrari Originals at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I am excited to be able to give away one of Pam’s creations to a lucky reader. Pam had me pick out the items for the giveaway so I hope you like them. But then, what’s not to like? They are awesome and unique.
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* The patina on copper heart necklace is the item I chose in exchange for promoting Ferrari Originals in the Gold Country Handmade series. If you are interested in being featured, visit the Gold Country Handmade page for details.
Pam is so talented! Would love to own a Ferrari original!
What lovely jewelry! Some people are SO talented!
Handcrafted items are so cool! Love these!
These are so different! Love em all!
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