Let fire inspire

Captivated by the magic of working with glass, Rebecca Weddell creates beautiful and unique lampwork beads and offers a range of beadmaking courses.

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Start them young!

I had the pleasure of welcoming 12-year-old Wini to the workshop on Saturday - she’d asked for a taster session with me for her birthday treat, and we had a very enjoyable afternoon at the torch flame!

As you probably already assume, lampwork glass beadmaking isn’t a pursuit for small children, which is why 12 is the minimum age for my course participants, and only then with parental supervision (up to age 16). Wini made up a twosome with her mum, Corina, and they enjoyed working side by side.

 Corina and Wini in action at their respective torch flames. They’re certainly concentrating, but at the same time are comfortable at the flame - which is the perfect combination!

Corina and Wini in action at their respective torch flames. They’re certainly concentrating, but at the same time are comfortable at the flame - which is the perfect combination!

 Here’s Wini carefully adding transparent sapphire dots to an opaque sky blue bead which she’d shaped beautifully in the flame.

Here’s Wini carefully adding transparent sapphire dots to an opaque sky blue bead which she’d shaped beautifully in the flame.

 Corina’s favourite colour is orange… but how can you tell?

Corina’s favourite colour is orange… but how can you tell?

 Two glorious collections of beads, strung in the order they were made. Perfect!

Two glorious collections of beads, strung in the order they were made. Perfect!

 Here are Wini’s beads - she was such an efficient worker that she made 4 beads to her mum’s 3! #niceone

Here are Wini’s beads - she was such an efficient worker that she made 4 beads to her mum’s 3! #niceone

Would YOU like to let fire inspire at the torch flame? I’d love to welcome you to my four-torch workshop here in rural East Sussex. Come as a pair or as a group - but there’s no extra charge for one-to-one tuition if you’d like to come on your own!

Busy week!

It’s been a busy week at Let Fire Inspire! After a couple of days working away with my husband, I got back to the workshop on Wednesday and was joined at the torch flame by Corinne - she was celebrating her birthday with a taster session in lampwork glass beadmaking.

Corinne’s husband Simon joined her for the morning - and he brought his camera along to record the event! He’s very kindly given me permission to use his photographs here.

In a beginners’ taster session here at Let Fire Inspire the first task at the torch flame is to pull some ‘stringers’ of glass, in order to get experience of how the glass feels and behaves at different temperatures. We move on to winding and shaping glass in the flame, starting with a plain bead and moving on to two different surface decoration techniques. Students make three beads in a ninety-minute taster session.

 My snap of Corinne’s finished collection of three beads. My favourite is the middle one - she decorated a mauve bead with some gorgeous reactive purple frit, and it’s come out beautifully!

My snap of Corinne’s finished collection of three beads. My favourite is the middle one - she decorated a mauve bead with some gorgeous reactive purple frit, and it’s come out beautifully!

 Shaping a bead in the torch flame. Photograph courtesy of Simon Hennessey.

Shaping a bead in the torch flame. Photograph courtesy of Simon Hennessey.

 Melting frit on the surface of a bead. Photograph courtesy of Simon Hennessey.

Melting frit on the surface of a bead. Photograph courtesy of Simon Hennessey.

 Shaping the bead in the torch flame. All it takes is a consistent turn! The magic of shaping glass is the combination of heat, gravity and surface tension! Photograph courtesy of Simon Hennessey.

Shaping the bead in the torch flame. All it takes is a consistent turn! The magic of shaping glass is the combination of heat, gravity and surface tension! Photograph courtesy of Simon Hennessey.


Hot on Corinne and Simon’s tails were mum-and-daughter pair Sarah and Hannah, who joined me for a beginners’ half-day session yesterday morning. This again was in celebration of a birthday, and again a good time was had by all! I’d met Hannah and Sarah last summer while I was demonstrating lampwork glass beadmaking during Lewes Artwave Festival, and I was delighted to welcome them to the workshop yesterday.

 Here’s Sarah winding a bead at the torch flame - the dish of red frit on the left-hand side is destined for surface decoration.

Here’s Sarah winding a bead at the torch flame - the dish of red frit on the left-hand side is destined for surface decoration.

 I always tell my students that choosing their colours is the most difficult part of the course! They have the choice of around 15 glass rods to work with, and a selection of six colours of frit. Here you can see Hannah wavering over which colour of frit to choose…

I always tell my students that choosing their colours is the most difficult part of the course! They have the choice of around 15 glass rods to work with, and a selection of six colours of frit. Here you can see Hannah wavering over which colour of frit to choose…

 Both ladies torching at their respective workbenches. Yes, those are coffee cups on top of the kiln, and yes, it does help to keep hot drinks hot!

Both ladies torching at their respective workbenches. Yes, those are coffee cups on top of the kiln, and yes, it does help to keep hot drinks hot!

 Ta-daaaah! Sarah’s beads are at the top, and Hannah’s are the bottom ones. They picked a beautifully diverse range of colours - I love Hannah’s green gravity-twisted bead, second left, and Sarah’s very vibrant orange bead dotted with yellow and white, far right.

Ta-daaaah! Sarah’s beads are at the top, and Hannah’s are the bottom ones. They picked a beautifully diverse range of colours - I love Hannah’s green gravity-twisted bead, second left, and Sarah’s very vibrant orange bead dotted with yellow and white, far right.


Would YOU like to let fire inspire on a course with me here at the workshop?

The Workshop, 8 Village Works, London Road, East Hoathly
Lewes, East Sussex, BN8 6QA
01825 840638

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