How we make them
First we get excited about a grouping of colours and take the chosen moretti glass rods to the workbench.
Glass, of course, must be heated to be worked. We heat the glass with ether an LPG or Oxygen torch. They look a little like the Bunsen burners we used to use in high school.
With protective glasses on to block the light flare, we use a slim stainless steel rod called a mandrel with it's end dipped in a coating to ensure that the bead will release once cooled. If there is any crack in that coating when you apply the glass, that bead will never come off the metal and you will have yourself, yet another, pot plant decoration.
Once the base colour is applied, other colours can be added, dots and lines, all the while turning that mandrel. If the mandrel stops your bead drops... hot glass melting the table beneath.
Click here to see a video of a bead being made by Mama Oodie.