Let’s Make Some Beads

murano glass heart

Take a look as we work with the bead makers for new ideas, new shapes. First you must choose the form and the glass canes. There are forms called pinze for every size of each form, for example in hearts we have from 8mm, 10, 12, 14, 16, 20 to 35mm+. The color of the…

Halloween Bracelet – Skulls & Charms

Free Design Project from VenetianBeadShop

For some people Halloween is the best holiday of the year. Count us in, we love dressing the kids up and strolling through the neighborhood. We have even taken Halloween costumes to the kids in Murano – now thanks to the same manufacturers who flood our markets with costumes, Venetians can find them locally. While it’s…


Murano Glass Canes, Cane Glass a centuries old tradition.

Cane Glass – Murano Glass

Cane Glass is really a evolution of the old Rosetta Canna – just a whole lot less complicated. The furnaces in Murano have been blowing and pulling glass rods for centuries. It’s something they do for example:

1) when they need to make the “s” curves for chandeliers
2)when they want to make chevrons – the Rosetta 3)when they want to make the glass rods for silver serving pieces.

Just pointing out that cane glass was NOT invented in the US by ANYONE!

This is a working furnace in Murano and the one where we produced the cane glass, our blown filigrana beads, wine glasses, vases, bowls, and bottles and a few thousand drawer pulls, wine stoppers, Christmas Balls, Glass Slippers and almost anything you can dream. This furnace has been making glass since the 1960s. It is a production furnace, supplying handmade Murano Glass all over the world. It’s hot, it is heavy, it’s dangerous and it is not for tourist.

A Typical Murano Glass Furnace

And who better to make this glass, or so at least that is what I thought when I began a project with my dear friends at the furnace. Partly the owner humored me, and partly he thought it was a good idea as well. Neither of us knew that the stubborn nature of Muranese and tradition would get in our way.

It is the same process as making the zanfirico or the latticino which is used in all furnaces as decorations. Many of these furnaces also pull their own mosaic – millefiori or murrine.  It just makes sense to “do it in-house”, you have the glass, the workers and then you know it is done properly and will be absolutely compatible with your other glass.

Murano Glass Furnace - Bubble

Claudio puts the bubble in the glass.

Here you see Claudio – who, over the years, worked as a glass blower and a waiter. Some of you who have been to Venice to the demonstrations of glass blowing may have seen him there as he moonlighted on the weekends earning a little neri (cash under the table). He spoke about 5 languages and arrived on the vaporetto each morning from Pt Sabbione – not a native Muranese. He is preparing the blow pipe to bring out the mass of glass that becomes the bubble.

The bubble is crucial, because that bubble becomes the hole inside our cane glass. Now as you see, it is darn right difficult for us to control the exact size of the bubble and therefore the hole! Once the bubble in inside, the next work, like making mosaics is to add on the layers of color or decoration. With the cane glass, we next add the color which is a thin layer when viewed from a cross section.

The ball become quite large and it’s a lot like making taffy (just at a much higher temperature). The size of the ball will determine how much glass rod you yield, a delicate balance between making production and being able to control the cooling process so you don’t break the glass.  When the ball is at the size you want, another glass blower arrives with a hot punti which he uses to attach to the other side of the ball, with the blow pipe still attached on the ball as well. Then it’s a ballet of blower and the glass to pull this ball out before it begins cooling.

Pulling Glass Canes, Murano taly

Pulling the canes for Cane Glass

I might point out here that this is also the reason our can glass varies in diameter, exact shape as well as hole size. A bed of insulation is prepared to drop the cane for cooling.

Next comes the conflict of tradition and need. The traditional way for canes to be cut is chopping, that’s right, like a guillotine. If you use this glass in the furnace, you do not need straight cuts, you heat it up and it become the decoration on an art piece.

But our jewelry makers want nice straight ends so their earrings, necklaces, etc hang just right. It was a loosing battle against centuries of “that’s how we do it”. We did come to terms on fire polishing the ends, probably a major concession in Muranese history.


Glass Rods In the Furnace in Murano

Here’s our inventory of glass waiting to be cut – no make that chopped!

So if you want to use our cane glass be prepared for a few irregularities on these absolutely – doesn’t get more authentic – Murano Cane Glass.  Enjoy them!


Wouldn’t you Wubber? Tools of the Trade

Wubber Tools,Bead Tutorial

If you are new to beading, you are probably wondering what tools you should buy. While it is best to know that beading is your passion before investing in a tool box stuffed with pliers, cutters, etc, good tools can help your jewelry projects easier. The right tool for the job. The Wubbers by Patti…

VenetianBeadShop is now a Google Trusted Store

VenetianBeadShop.com, which offers authentic Murano Glass Beads, Swarovski Crystal Elements, Silver and Gold Findings – everything to make jewelry, was recently selected to join the Google Trusted Stores program. To help shoppers identify online merchants that offer a great shopping experience, the Google Trusted Store badge is awarded to ecommerce sites that demonstrate a track…

Antique Your Stampings – How to Oxidize Metals

Did you ever wonder how jewelry gets that faint, slightly antiqued look? Did you know you can do it yourself. Try this on small piece before you work on your best jewelry. What is Oxidation? It is a chemical reaction where metals is deliberately tarnished or slightly discolored, leaving a patina (finish). It gives the…

Sculpted – Chevron Murano Blown Glass Beads

Venetian Bead Shop working on New Designs in Murano

When it comes to our sculpted Blown Beads, you have to think in 3d. The outside color is only part of the story. Selecting canes, you need to be able to visualize the effect when the outside layer is ground away. We work with our Master Glass Blower to come up with the designs. Sometimes…

I Love Montana Bracelet Design

Make this Swarovski Design Bracelet

Make this Swarovski designed bracelet in just a few minutes. The abundance of Swarovski Crystals makes a statement. For the free design instructions which you can download and print as well as a list of supplies, click on the picture or Click Here It features the new Swarovski Blends of Crystal/Montana strung on memory wire.…

Tips for Visiting Venice and Murano

Venice Tips & Places This week one of our customers asked us for recommendations in Venice and Murano. Since many of you may be planning travels. We’ll share a few of our tips with you Visiting a Furnace: There are 2 ways, 1) DELUXE: Ask at your hotel who always has an arrangement with a…

%d bloggers like this: