Fueling The Passion

Summer 2019

SCFS News: Summer 2019

President’s Corner

Summer Greetings to all So Cal Flame Surfers!

Hope you have been having lots of fun at the torch, despite the heat. Our chapter members were able to get together for two Flame Surfer events in the last quarter. Thanks to all that came to our June meeting at Pacific Art Glass. We had a great demo from Jordan Segell on making a boro hollow pendant that included silver fuming and wigwag techniques. Jordan works at Pacific Art Glass and is available for private lessons on working with boro.

We also had a special event in July, with a half-day workshop on making hollow beads in soft glass with a blow tube. Charlie Warner led a group of Flame Surfers through the steps of making a gather, blowing a bubble, blowing out a bead, and making end holes; all on a small torch. We hope to have more workshops next year. Please contact me if you would like to host one and share your skills with others.

Coming up, we have three events planned for August and September that I hope you will be able to join us for. Our next general meeting will be Sept. 7 at Pacific Art Glass, featuring a demo by Judy Carlson. Also, September is Bead Challenge month for Beads of Courage and we will again be hosting a Flame Date/Open Studio at Pacific Art Glass on September 28. We had a great time at this event last year, made lots of clay and glass beads, and raised hundreds of dollars for BOC. New this year, is a Courage Bead competition for Flame Surfers. We have fantastic prizes for those donating the most Courage Beads by Sept. 28. To help prepare for making the clay beads during the open studio, we are having a polymer clay workshop on August 31 to make canes and bead cores. I hope to see you at all of these events, see below for details.

August 31 Polymer Clay Workshop

  • Saturday, August 31, 10:00 – 2:00
  • D’ Arcy Architecture, Irvine, CA

You are invited to join us in Irvine for a special polymer clay party, to make components for use on the polymer clay beads we will make at the BOC Open Studio in September. Making special pattern canes and bead cores in advance will help us make more beads in Sept. 28 and increase the success of bead making by our volunteers and visitors on Sept.28. No special experience in polymer clay is needed, just your enthusiasm. We will provide all supplies and guide you through the steps. Lunch will be provided. Many thanks to BOC Board member Chrissy Peterson of Wells Fargo for hosting this event for us!

The location for the August 31st event will be:

d’Arcy Architecture

18 Technology Suite #158

Irvine Ca 92618

Please RSVP to Steve Bay if you plan to attend so we can plan for supplies and food: steveb@sccwrp.org

September 7 SCFS Meeting

  • Saturday, September 7, 9:30-12:30
  • Pacific Art Glass, Gardena, CA

Many thanks to John Williams and the staff at PAG for hosting our meeting and supporting SCFS events. We will provide drinks and snacks during the meeting. You are welcome to join us for lunch afterwards.

Demo. Did you know that the 2019 Pantone color of the year is Coral? Flame Surfer Judy Carlson will treat us to a double header demo: showing us two styles of coral-themed beads. Judy will show us how she makes a large coral cage bead and will also demonstrate making the beautiful coral bead necklace shown below. According to Judy: “if you can make dots, you can make these beads”.


Show and Tell. Bring in some of your latest creations to share with the group. Why not embrace our “coral” theme and bring in something from the tropical reef or a piece using a coral color?

Glass Gift Exchange. Please bring a wrapped flame worked bead or sculptural item for the gift exchange. All skill levels and themes are welcome. This is a great opportunity to get a unique item from one of your talented colleagues.

Beads of Courage Donation. We need your help to make lots of Courage beads, those with a special theme, size, texture, or sculptural element. Remember, your stash of beads that didn’t turn out perfect, but are too nice to discard, make perfect Courage beads. Any qualifying Courage beads donated at his meeting count towards the Bead Challenge competition running until our Sept. 28 BOC event.

September 28 Flame Date and Open Studio

  • Saturday, September 28, 9:00-2:00
  • Pacific Art Glass, Gardena, CA

We will be getting up early to beat the heat and make beads for BOC at PAG on Saturday, September 28. Come join us for a day of fun and helping others. We will provide the supplies and food; bring your tools and energy for this fun event.

Our goals for this event are ambitious: to make 50 glass courage beads and 200 polymer clay courage beads during the day, and receive donations of 500 more glass beads from our members. To stimulate your Courage Bead output in September, we have set up a friendly competition with some outstanding prizes to be awarded at this event. See below for details

SCFS also has the privilege of again working with BOC regional board member Chrissy Peterson to get the word out to the local BOC community about our event, and I expect we will have some visitors anxious to meet you and see you at work. Like last, year, we expect to have a great group of volunteers eager to help make polymer beads and participate in the other activities.

Open torch. We will have a full complement of torches available for your use in the workshop. Please bring your own tools, glasses, and any special supplies. We will provide a large assortment of glass, sample beads, and tutorials for you to create with.

Polymer clay beads. We have prepared a wonderful selection of canes for you to incorporate into polymer clay beads. All clay and supplies will be provided. This is a great way to take a break and relax while waiting for a turn on the torch. Any visitors will also be encouraged to make beads with your guidance.

BOC activities. Volunteers from BOC will staff several tables for BOC activities and fund raising. These will include an opportunity to sponsor a courage bead for a BOC member, purchase special beads and carry-a-bead kits, and stringing beads to make a courage clip. Come to our Sept. 8 meeting for more details. 

Courage Bead Competition

There are never enough Courage beads to meet the need of BOC. Because of the shortage, some BOC members never get the opportunity to select a special bead to help mark their journey. Let’s help meet the need by donating hundreds of beads through SCFS by Sept. 28!. The competition is open to all current SCFS members. There are three prizes, thanks to the generosity of Joy Munshower, Margaret Zinser-Hunt, and Pacific Art Glass. You could win a beautiful Palomino horse bead from Joy, or this stunning red ginger butterfly pendant from Margaret. The third prize is a gift certificate from Pacific Art Glass.

Competition Rules.

Qualification. To qualify for the competition, you must be a current SCFS member and donate at least 20 Courage beads that meet the minimum criteria by Sept. 28. Everyone has a chance to win a prize.

Courage Bead Criteria. Acceptable beads for this competition must meet the following criteria:

  • Meet standard BOC requirements: 3/32 mandrel, good ends, sturdy construction, no exposed reduction/metallic glass, cleaned of bead release.
  • At least ¾ inch size (length or diameter)
  • Contain at least two colors, besides clear.
  • Include an additional artistic element, such as additional colors, sculptural design, special pattern, or unusual shape.

Submitting Beads. Beads must be received at a SCFS meeting/event in August or September or delivered in person to a SCFS board member. Each batch of donated beads must be packaged in a sealable bag/box accompanied by a submission note card that contains: name of artist donating, number of beads, date, email. Bead counts will be verified and may be adjusted if the criteria are not met.

Prizes. First and second place prizes will be awarded to the top two artists donating the most beads. First place gets to select the sculptural glass prize of their choice. Second place will receive the other sculptural piece. All other qualifying competitors will be entered for a random drawing to win the PAG gift certificate. Prizes will be awarded during the BOC event on Sept. 28, but the winner does not have to be present.

All styles of beads that meet the above criteria are welcome. Some examples from last year’s flame date are shown here. Abstract or non-sculptural bead designs are also welcome. BOC tutorial collections are also available from Diane Woodall and Soda Lime Times.

Good luck with the competition. Every entry will win a smile from a child.


See you in September,

Steve Bay

President, So Cal Flame Surfers

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