Glassblowing in Ottawa AKA Glass Masters are Among Us!

Ottawa Glass blowing ornament_0004When I travelled to Venice, Italy, I saw a store where they demonstrated how to create pieces of art with glass. I was intrigued because being a guy, I am naturally attracted to fire and melting things! So when Shannon invited me to a glass blowing, Christmas ornament making workshop, I jumped at the opportunity!

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I had no idea that you could even do this in Ottawa, but nevertheless, at 5:34, I found myself at Flo Glassblowing with 5 other individuals looking to see how one makes a glass ornament, and eager to make one myself!

First thing is first. Get introduced to our glass teacher, Jennifer Bennet, who has been glass blowing for 20 years! She was great to work with, and patient with my care-free, take pictures of everything without really asking attitude!

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Next up, pick the type of ball you want to make, and then any colors you would like to add to them! Even though the picture shows a mirage of colors, I went with blue and white, since I wanted something simpler (and elegant, but I didn’t have high hopes to make that happen!)

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Then the glass master (is that a thing? I want it to be a thing. Let’s make it a thing) begins by placing a rod into the oven, which is heated to over 1200 c! The glass is collected and you then need to turn the rod to begin shaping it.

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Once it’s taken out, the colors are added to it by rolling the colored dust and rocks on the still superheated glass!

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The glass is then placed back in the oven so that the colors can mix and melt into the glass. The rod is taken out afterwards and the process of creating the ball begins.

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You then have to blow into the rod to get the glass to become a ball!

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It is at this juncture that I’d like to point out that the glasses I’m wearing are to protect my eyes and not part of my fashion style…though they are definitely styling!

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The process is then repeated to continue forming the ornament ball.

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Once it looks good, the ball is broken off the rod, and another, smaller piece of glass is placed on top to make the string holder (I’m sure there’s an actual name but that’s the best I could do!) and it’s then placed in another oven that is not as hot. You can then pick up your ornament the next day!

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All in all, I had a very fun time making my Christmas ornament! I think it would be a really unique idea to take someone on a date to do this, then maybe go for dinner at one of the restaurants close by, as Flo Glassblowing is located in Little Italy! They also let kids make ornaments, so you could bring your family if you’re looking for something to do!


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3 thoughts on “Glassblowing in Ottawa AKA Glass Masters are Among Us!

  1. Nice post Christopher! Someone from the studio stumbled on it. You are truly a gifted photographer because, although I remember you I do not remember your camera at all. You are very discreet. If you are willing to share some photos I could use a couple.

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