Finding My Heart – Designing Under Duress

I hope that you don’t mind me reminiscing about a design from a year ago!

Ever since I began making flameworked beads, I had been making hearts. Of course, I was trying to make a heart that looked like something unique to me.

Last year, our local ISGB (International Society of Glass Beadmakers) chapter, Hot Rods of Northeast Ohio, decided to make a postcard for the Gathering (a convention for beadmakers). The theme of the postcard was to be “hearts”, since the theme of that Gathering was “In the Heartland”. We would all send our beads to one person, Justine Conklin, who would then photograph the beads and design the postcard.

I made a few hearts, they were nice, but not postcard-worthy. I made more hearts. Still, nothing that really “sang”. The deadline came and went. One morning, Justine sent an e-mail that if I mailed a bead by the Next Day, she could still fit my bead onto the card. Well, to mail the bead the Next Day, I would have to make the bead right away. In fact, I decided to make one early that morning, before I went to work. It could anneal during the day, and if it cracked, I could try one more time that night. Yeah, that will work. I had been trying for months and I would get it right – NOW.

I had some really great white, red, and orange latticino already made, so that was the obvious choice for decorating the heart. I started making the heart, and by the time that I had the shape made, it occurred to me that the heart was big – maybe too big to add the latticino. Oh no! I did not have time to start over! So, I wrapped the latticino onto the heart and melted it in. It didn’t look bad. In fact, it looked good! Even better, it looked like my style.

I guess that it DID work. Maybe it’s the mindset that I had to get it done, so I did. Could that possibly be the reason?

rosemarie hanus glass heart bead

Rosemarie Hanus is a glass artist who writes from her studio in Bath Township, Ohio. Her website is


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