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Liuli Glass Incense Burners

Incense burners made from liuli - a traditional form of Chinese glass art. Includes incense holders made for incense sticks and incense powder. Our liuli incense holder collection comes from a reputable, family owned local liuli workshop with artisans who are highly experienced in the liuli techniques.


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What is liuli made of?

Liuli is a form of glass art, also commonly known as liuli crystal, liuli glass, or liuli crystal art. It has a long history in China, where glass production is believed to have begun approximately 2,500 years ago.

Liuli pieces are made from glass paste or glass pieces fired at extremely high temperatures, up to 1000 /1832 °F.

What is liuli crystal in Chinese?

The characters for liuli in Chinese are 琉璃 or.

In ancient times, it is believed this word referred to gems that originated from the Central Asia region. Through Chinese history, it has often referred to a shiny, colored glaze used on roof tiles and art pieces because of the similar raw materials and techniques used. In fact, for periods of time, the phrase was believed to be a generic word which described many types of shiny objects.

Today, this word most commonly refers for glass art made from the lost-wax casting technique (see below).   

How is liuli made?

Liuli is made using the lost-wax casting process, an ancient technique typically reserved for bronze statues. It is a time-consuming process, and requires the creation of a wax positive and plaster mold (which is broken at the end of the process) for every piece that is created. However, this process allows artisans to create pieces which are more intricate than other techniques allow.


For more details of the process, including photos of the various steps, please check out our article here.

Wax positives for creating the final mold

Breaking the plaster mold to remove the final liuli pieces

What is pate de verre glass?

Liuli glass pieces are created by heating glass crystal (of chosen color combinations) in the final plaster mold until all the glass melts and melds together. If glass paste is placed into the mold for heating, the technique is referred to as pate de verre. Alternative techniques involve placing larger glass pieces into the mold for heating.

Related Articles from the Blog

Liuli (琉璃, or 瑠璃) is a form of glass art which involves a multi-step lost-wax casting process, the same process used for casting bronze statues. This is a costly and time consuming process that allows artisans to create pieces which are more intricate and elaborate than is normally possible with glass. We have recently added a seletion of Liuli pieces into our collection of incense burners, and introduce this technique in more detail in this article...


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Burning incense powder refers to the traditional Chinese practice of zhuan xiang (篆香 ) or yin xiang (印香), which literally translates into creating an incense seal or incense stamp from incense powder. There are two key elements to burn powder incense, each requiring some patience and practice to master, we'll explain each in depth in this article...


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The English word “incense” derives from the Latin word for “to burn”, incendēre.So in its most basic sense, incense is just different plant or animal materials that are burnt for their fragrant smells. Incense comes in various forms such as sticks, cones, and powder. Its use ranges from ceremonial to accompaniment for daily rituals. Read more in this article...


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