Millefiori glass inlays Traditionally crafted in Tuscany

 

Millefiori is an ancient decorative glasswork technique practised by the Romans, but lost during the 1700s and only rediscovered in the nineteenth century. Translated as “a thousand flowers”, the process involves colouring layers of glass and rolling them into cylinders. These cylinders are heated in a furnace and drawn out into long rods or murrini, with the artist’s design running the full length of the rods, and only visible at each end.

 

The more the glass rods are stretched, the smaller the design becomes. Glass possesses the contradictory properties of being both very strong and very fragile, so when the right diameter is reached, each rod is thinly sliced with diamond saw blades - the only material that can cut glass without shattering it.

 

 

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