There are lots of new raspberry hybrids these days, including some purple ones you won't find in the grocery store. These raspberries are made of glass, but so realistic that you won't be able to tell until you touch them. They are heirloom quality art works. Start your collection now, or give as a gift to the foodie, gourmet cook or gardener in your life.
These lampwork fruit sculptures are the size of real raspberries that you would pick in the garden - just under 3/4" (19mm) high. They are so lifelike you have to keep them out of the reach of small children. Unlike the real fruit, they will last forever and become treasured family heirlooms. Almost nothing in nature is perfectly round, smooth or even, so I deliberately avoid making my glass fruit and leaves too perfect. I put on splotches and speckles, make them a tidbit lopsided, and add other imperfections so that each berry or leaf is unique. This makes them look much more "real".
I make each of the glass fruits by melting glass rods in the flame of a torch and shaping the glass with simple tools. Every single drupelet (cell) is individually applied over the surface of the fruit in a painstaking process and each has a slight vertical indentation. I achieve the variations in color by selectively heating and cooling the glass, so the color will never rub, flake or chip off. No two glass raspberries are exactly alike. Like real raspberries, my lampwork raspberries are mostly hollow and have a matte surface. When the raspberries are handled, the natural oils from your skin enhance this soft sheen.
Image by Elizabeth Johnson, June 27, 2014
Elizabeth Johnson Art Glass, LLC