U.S. based glass company Double Helix are very well known for their silver saturated glasses, so when I got a chance to have a play with some Olympia Rain, I jumped at the chance!
Olympia Rain is one of their oldest colours, but it was taken out of production for a while and replaced with Aion due to some inconsistencies. They have brought it back recently in Limited Production though, due to popular demand.
I was pretty sure it was a reducer, but I found it actually responded quite well to light striking as well.
Here are my findings anyway, I hope they might be useful to someone!
OK, this first pic is just a little comparison of Olympia Rain (left) and Aion (right), both are heavily reduced, this is before I even thought about striking them! Its hard to see in the picture but Olympia Rain has become a bit more opaque with the reduction, whereas Aion is sort of opalescent. They both have a very subtle milky blue running through them, again it doesn’t show too well in the photo, sorry.
Both of the beads in this photo are Olympia Rain. The left is it applied just by itself in a neutral flame. It goes all wispy looking, almost like there are some cobwebs floating about in the bead. I loved this effect and will definitely be using it for some fun encasing later. The right hand one is a base of Olympia rain, a stringer of stormed Olympia Rain, and encased with Olympia Rain (maybe I overdid this one in hindsight?!) The wispy look is a lot denser, it is a lot more opaque with the inclusion of the stormed stringer.
If you are confused about storming, its a tutorial by a lady called Amy Kinsch, and available here. It works on Hotheads too, and focuses on reduction glass. She recommends Olympia Rain in the tutorial, and I was really impressed when I used the technique with it.
Here the bead on the left is stormed Olympia Rain over Reichenbach Mystic Pink (which has gone deep purple), and encased. Again, I love the haunted wispy look it achieves, I cant wait to explore this more.
The bead on the right I wasn’t expecting. Its CIM’s Electric Avenue with a swipe of Olympia Rain, lightly reduced. Well the blue has creeped up over the edges and just about swallowed the O.R., leaving a rusty net of reduction haze around it. I actually quite like it, but I might be the only one, it sort of looks like its been burnt!
Now, here are a few pics of how it looks on other bases. I’m sorry about the rubbish photos, it seems like months since we have seen the sun!
I found it is best used in moderation, and that using pale transparents to encase it can be really effective.
I like this one (above), its a base of Effetre Dark Amethyst with some dots of stormed O.R., some dots of plain O.R. applied in a slightly reducing flame and some Silvered Ivory Stringer dots. I did a few little twists with a clear stringer then added some fine silver wire and heated it in, then encased the whole thing with CIM Clear.
This one is a bit more simple, it was a base of Reichenbach Silver Brown, with swipes of Olympia Rain (I got them very hot on the rod so they were totally clear when applied to the bead). Then some dots of S.I.S., swirled with a clear stringer again (the O.R. struck almost pink during this stage). Then I reduced and encased it.
Finally (phew!), this one is a base of mystic pink with dots of stormed Olympia Rain, CIM Hades and S.I.S., all twirled with a clear stringer and encased.
Wow, that was a lot more long-winded that I expected! I hope you are still awake (!) and you enjoyed it. Have a good weekend, I’ll be doing some wispy encasing!
P.S. All the photos are clickable.