I made a Christmas ornament this year. Yeah, I know. It’s something we all do in kindergarten.
But this ornament shines and glows. It’s heavy and it will shatter if I don’t protect it like it’s Waterford crystal. It’s not Waterford but to me it’s as precious as my wine glasses.
And like a piece from Waterford or, closer to home, Simon Pearce, it’s a handblown glass beauty.
I went to Hollywood Hot Glass in Hollywood, Florida, thinking I was going to watch others turn glowing goo into glass. I’ve watched glass blowers from Ireland to Western Maryland and never get tired of this particular brand of artistry. Bad news, my husband announced. The only way you’re going to see glass blown today is if you do it yourself.
Oh, too bad. No, he said. Really. You can blow it yourself. They have a couple of options for projects newbies like myself can do. Including a glass ornament.
So I did. I made it myself. I had a lot of help. HHG’s founder Brenna Baker retrieved that glowing glob of goo from the extremely hot oven and she put the little loop on the end and made sure the finished product cooled down without shattering. But it was me who picked
the colors (she dipped the hot glass in them). And it was me who twisted the hot glass to form the swirl of green and red and white. And it was me who blew and blew until the the glob turned into a globe.
And it was me who hung it on my Christmas tree this year.
Best part? Anybody can do it. All you have to do is show up.
Ⓒ Text Mary K. Tilghman; photos Ray Truitt