The Art of Glass making and Venetian Glass Beads:
The process of making Murano glass is rather complex. As the glass passes from a liquid to a solid state, there is an interval when the glass is soft before it hardens completely. This is when the glass-master can shape the material.
Venetian artisans use special tools including: borselle (tongs to hand-form the red-hot glass); canna da soffio (a blowing pipe); pontello (an iron rod that helps with adding the finishing touches); scagno (a work bench); and tagianti (glass-cutting clippers).
Beads have been made of glass for over 5,000 years. The discovery of fire was the essential step in glass bead making. The history of bead making in Venice goes back to the days of Marco Polo when he returned from his travels with the beads of Asia. Local artisans took to their glass making skills to reproduce in glass the precious stones of Marco Polo.