How to Make a Fused Glass Butterfly Pendant

Make a one-of-a-kind dichroic glass necklace pendant with this simple fused glass technique.
hclvr117_2final2

hclvr117_2final2

Materials and tools:

tested compatible lavender glass, 2" x 4" inch piece each of blue and gray
dichroic glass
glass cutter
glass cutting fluid
kiln
kiln wash
tile nippers
grozing pliers
18" of 18-gauge dead soft sterling silver wire
wire cutters
wire wrapping pliers
ball peen hammer
bench block
size 8 knitting needle
honing stone
rock tumbler with stainless steel shot
dishwashing liquid

Steps:

  1. Cut blue glass into two 1-inch squares and one 3/4-inch piece.
  2. Cut lavender glass into one 3/4-inch square and one 1/2-inch square. Clean the glass well with hot soapy water to remove streaks and fingerprints.
  3. Stack one large blue piece, one 3/4-inch lavender piece, one 3/4-inch blue piece and one 1/2-inch lavender piece. Then stack one 1-inch blue piece and one 1/2-inch dichroic glass piece.
  4. Place the two stacks on a prepared kiln shelf and fuse until the layers blend together, approximately five hours at 1330 degrees F with a 10-minute hold. Tip: Don't round out too much as kiln temperatures vary.
  5. After the pieces are cool, use tile nippers to break into four triangular pieces. Break into two larger and two smaller triangles. Clean thoroughly.
  6. Cut a piece of the gray glass into a randomly-edged triangular shape about 1-1/2 inches wide. Cut small scrap pieces of clear. Clean all glass pieces.
  7. Lay the scrap pieces on the kiln shelf so they will project slightly from under the clear pieces to make little notches for wire wrapping the piece later.
  8. Place the clear triangle glass on the top and then arrange the four triangle blue pieces on the top, to resemble butterfly wings. Place the two larger pieces on the top and the smaller pieces on the bottom. If desired, place a small piece of stringer, or a very thin piece of dichroic glass along the center for the butterfly's body.
  9. Tack fuse the butterfly to the base piece by heating it enough so that the pieces start to melt together, but not so much that the butterfly loses its distinct shape. Approximately 1310 degrees F in kiln.
  10. When the kiln has cooled, remove the butterfly.
  11. If the clear edges project too much, cut them off with the tile nippers and fuse again. Each time the piece is fused the less defined the shape becomes, so fuse only as needed.
  12. If the butterfly base has any sharp edges, use a honing stone to smooth. If the edges are rough, or for a smoother appearance, use a glass grinder to smooth the edges and then fire polish in the kiln.
  13. Cut a 12-inch piece of 18-gauge sterling silver wire and bend it around a knitting needle in the center to make the bail at the top.
  14. With the bail at the top, wrap the wire around the butterfly to hold it securely in place. With the leftover wire, make two spirals for the antenna and pound them with a ball peen hammer to flatten slightly.
  15. Tumble in a rock tumbler with stainless steel shot, water and a drop of dishwashing soap for 30 minutes to several hours, or until the nicks and kinks are eliminated.
  16. Remove the butterfly pendant from the rock tumbler and rinse thoroughly.
Keep Reading

Next Up

How to Make Mercury Glass Votives

Transform inexpensive glass votives and hurricanes into faux "mercury glass" candle holders using silver and gold leaf. These chic, handmade accessories will bring a little shine to any Christmas arrangement.

Kids' Craft: Make a Candy Cane Mouse

Handmade sleeves or holders for candy canes have been around for generations. This sweet throwback holiday craft is quick, easy and fun for kids of all ages to make using just felt and glue.

Kids' Craft: Make a Pom-Pom Christmas Garland

Kids love seeing their handmade ornaments and decorations used at Christmas. This colorful yarn garland is fun and easy to make for kids of all ages, making it an ideal family craft.

How to Make an Ice Lantern

Use winter's frosty temps to your advantage when decorating your home's outdoors for the holidays. These ice lanterns are pretty, festive and just require water, plastic containers and a chill in the air.

How to Make a Cat Condo

Use everyday items to build a fancy cat post with baskets.

How to Make Giant Christmas Ornaments

Light up your exterior entryway with these fun and festive oversized ornaments.

How to Make a Rosemary Gin-Ginger Cocktail

On a winter evening you need flavors that are bold enough to match the crisp outdoor temperatures. Try this easy cocktail to warm you up. 

How to Make a Wood Cutting Board

Woodworking projects can be intimidating, but this project is actually easier than you may think. With basic shop materials and dense hardwood, which is the best wood for cutting boards, you'll be able to create a chef-worthy chopping accessory that any foodie would love.

How to Make Glittered Mason Jar Lanterns

Craft your own sparkling holiday lanterns on the cheap! Glitter, glue and an empty glass jar are all you need.

How to Make Rolled Paper Roses

Paper flowers fashioned from old book pages, newspaper or brown Kraft paper are a frugal alternative to store-bought ribbons and bows.

On TV

Flea Market Flip

7:30am | 6:30c

Flea Market Flip

8:30am | 7:30c

Flea Market Flip

9:30am | 8:30c

Flea Market Flip

10:30am | 9:30c

Flea Market Flip

11:30am | 10:30c

Fixer Upper

7pm | 6c
On Tonight
On Tonight

Hawaii Life

8pm | 7c

Hawaii Life

8:30pm | 7:30c

Beach Hunters

9:30pm | 8:30c

Island Life

10pm | 9c

Island Life

10:30pm | 9:30c

House Hunters

11pm | 10c

Beach Hunters

12am | 11c

Beach Hunters

12:30am | 11:30c

Island Life

1am | 12c

Island Life

1:30am | 12:30c

Hawaii Life

3am | 2c

Hawaii Life

3:30am | 2:30c

Shop This Look

Found a living space you love in HGTV's Photo Library? Get the look in your own home with products from Wayfair.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.