Sunday, March 20, 2011

Beads by Gea Hines, color and fire

Photo by Ewa Rumprecht
The dazzling lampwork beads by Gea Hines, artist bead maker, look like pure color caught in glass. By fire.

Lampwork bead making is an ancient art. There is something magical in the idea of taking solid glass, firing it to a liquid, malleable state, and transforming it into an artistic object.

Gea Hines started her adventure in bead making in a rather mundane way. A stay-at-home mom, she was looking for something she could do at home to occupy her time and supplement the family income. Jewelry was her first choice, then she realized that instead of buying ready made beads she could create her own. Her first bead was just a blob of glass, a far cry from what she had imagined. Gea did not give up; she practiced and practiced until she developed solid skills. She continued learning about glass and its properties. She experimented with tools and eventually set up a workshop in her basement/den where she can work in comfort while watching over the activities of her growing children.

Gea, born and raised in Netherlands, does not come from an artistic family. She found she enjoyed art classes in high school. Somewhat against the advice of her parents she attended a fashion design school in Amsterdam. Then, occasional painting or drawing excepted, her artistic interests took a rest; she has not seriously exercised her creative powers until she picked up bead making.

Now she enjoys the fulfillment which comes from working with colors (blue is her favorite) and shapes. The art is precise and the artist must stay focused, playing with a torch is a dangerous employment after all. Gea's concentration is greatly helped by the fact that she also happens to be a yoga teacher.

Think Long Island First is very happy to carry her beads, bracelets, and earrings. Her hand made beads match Pandora bracelets. Gea has her own website under her company name Dinky Beads, she shows her work at fairs and craft shows. She will be present at the Long Island Bead Festival on April 10th, at Marriott Islandia.


  1. As someone who has purchased Gea's beads, this was a great education as to how much work and precision it takes for each bead. Very cool!

  2. What an awesome path she has lead to her success.