On December 29th, hubby and I attended a glass making workshop at the Playing with Fire studio. It was an intro workshop that lasted 90 minutes. There were 8-10 of us in the small, industrial studio, which was kept warm by the powerful and extremely hot furnaces used to melt the glass. As this was for the super beginners, we were not involved in the gathering. The instructor and her assistant would gather and hand it over to each student to dip into the colour “rocks” (to add colour), and then we’d carefully insert the glass with the colour into the glory hole and slowly rotate until the coloured rocks melt into the glass. At this point, the student sits down and picks up what looks like huge tweezers. The instructor brings over your hot glass and now you start to pull and shape your glass. It’s fascinating because glass is solid, but in this instance, it’s soft and gooey. As it cools, it feels more like chewing gum. This is why you need to work swiftly with hot glass.
We had to pick up our pieces the following week as it takes time for the glass to cool. We had no idea what to expect when we unwrapped our pieces because you do not get much of a chance to see your work on the day of the workshop. When the glass is brought over to you for shaping, it’s simply a glowing ball of light/heat, so you cannot see how the colours melted or what patterns it took on.
After each student completed their flower, our instructor gave us a demo of glass blowing. That looks really cool! Our instructor made a drinking glass. I will never look at hand-crafted glass pieces the same again. What a beautiful craft!