within our hot shops in seattle and berkeley, more than 80 glassblowers inspired by your stories, devote themselves to handcrafting each unique glassybaby, from sand to hand to heart. it looks like a dance with heat and light. glassblowers step and dip, blow, spin, and roll the molten glass that will become a glassybaby. but when you watch a while, you notice how each glassblower plays a role in the dance.
our colors define us
the vibrant color in every glassybaby comes from rods of concentrated colored glass called “color bars.” for every glassybaby there is a corresponding color bar and for each bar a specific amount is needed to create the proper density of color. the amount of color per glassybaby is called a “color drop.” very early in the morning these bars are loaded into a mini oven to get pre-heated to a temp of 1010 degrees or higher.
the process begins with the overlayer, who dips a blowpipe into the 2300 degree furnace, spins it around to gather clear glass and then blows a little bubble.
meanwhile the colorist then lifts up a molten bar of colored glass and lets it droop over onto the bubble. the overlayer snips off a blob of the color and rolls it smooth around the bubble.
the real character traits that make each glassybaby unique are created by the trimmer—the trickiest part of the dance. after the mold, the glass is transferred onto a different rod, which the trimmer spins while pulling out and shearing the lip of the votive.
when the lip is smooth and right (never perfect), the trimmer gently knocks the glass off of the rod, and presses the glassybaby stamp on the bottom.
the final step is putting the superheated glassybaby into the annealing ovens, which bring the glassybaby down, slowly, slowly to room temperature.
a baby is born
24 hours later, the glassybaby are as cool as they are beautiful, so they are born out of the oven and into the world.