Three Dimensional Visions | GlassBlowingHouston

Unique Glass Art, Wall Installations, and Lighting

Three Dimensional Visions | GlassBlowingHouston

Create Glass Art and Experience the Magic

Three Dimensional Visions | GlassBlowingHouston

The greater Houston area's only open access glassblowing studio.

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Covid Update | We are open!
We have emplaced new health safety protocals to protect your health and ours!

Glassblowing – Rebuilding Furnace

In-Person Shopping during business hours & by appointment
ONLINE SHOPPING available 24/7!

Experience the Magic!

 Glass Art Gallery & Glassblowing Studio

Open Thursday-Sunday 10 am – 5 pm

  • Acquire unique glass art, lighting, wall installations, and hand-blown giftware
  • Watch live glassblowing
  • Experience the magic of glass via watch & learn experiences
  • See what we can do with with a little breath, heat, and fire!

Glassblowing Information

  • History of Glass

    Glassmaking began about 5000 years ago, and glass blowing is much younger, only about 2000. People first created small cast objects of Glass in molds or by shaping it with simple tools somewhere before 2000 BC in Mesopotamia.

    Stone Age man used natural glass objects to fashion spear points and sharp cutting tools. The earliest known human-made glass objects were beads. During the late Bronze Age, there was a rapid growth in Glass’s technology, including color usage.

    There is a rich history of Glass as a luxury item, and then glassmaking developed slightly differently in each of the world’s cultures. By the 14th century, the island of Murano was the center for luxury Italian glassmaking due to the abundance of pure quartz pebbles.

    The American Studio Glass Movement began in the 1960s when Harvey Littleton, a teaching ceramicist at the University of Wisconsin in Madison, joined forces with the Toledo Museum of Art and held two historic glassblowing workshops. Dominick Labino, a glass research scientist, also helped devise a small, inexpensive furnace to melt and work Glass. After these workshops and learnings, Littleton started a glass program at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Some of the early students of this program (Dale Chihuly, Marvin Lipofsky, and Fritz Dreisbach) became innovative artists. They led Glass into its artistic forms of today in the United States.

  • The Importance of Glass

    We get lots of questions about Glass in the studio, so I thought we would provide some info to help you understand “Why Glass”!

    For us, Glass is a state of mind. It is a state of matter in reality. It gets created when molten material cools so rapidly that there is not enough time for a crystalline structure to form. In solids, atoms are in ordered lattice-like structures. In liquids, atoms and molecules move randomly; they flow. In solid Glass, atoms are held rigidly – and cannot flow; they are not in lattices. Glass is called a rigid liquid.

    When most people think of Glass, they think of it as a manmade object. But glass forms in nature:

    • Volcanoes spew molten rock, which cools rapidly and is called obsidian.
    • Lightning strikes desert or beach sands and forms brittle tubes of melted sand that form fulgurites.
    • Meteors that fly through the atmosphere and impact the earth with intense heat form terrestrial debris, which cools quickly and are called tektites.
    • Silicious skeletons of marine creatures (algae, sea sponges) are shed onto the ocean floor and form natural Glass.

    Glass is all around us. It is involved in every facet of our lives. Think about it. What would our world be without Glass?

    • It helps us control the temperature of our surroundings.
    • It aids our vision.
    • It facilitates communication through fiber optic cables.
    • It is in packaging, tableware.
    • It helps express our identity in the form of art.

    What does Glass not do? Its applications are endless.

  • The Composition of Glass

    Every Glass has its set of chemical and mechanical properties. If you don’t know what those are, you can’t work on a piece without some “experimentation.” One of the most important factors is the COE (coefficient of expansion) of the Glass.

    For glass pieces created under ambient conditions, stained Glass and mosaic Glass, knowing the COE is not essential because the material (the Glass) is not being heated and cooled to different temperatures. For glass forms created using kiln forming or hot glass techniques, the COE is essential. You can sometimes get away with fusing or blowing Glass with a 1 or 2 COE difference, but not always. If it is not compatible, it develops lines of stress along which it can fracture.

    Type of GlassCommon NameCOE
    Effetre (Moretti)lamp working glass104
    Spruce Pine Batch for GlassBlowingBatch96
    Spectrum, Uroborus Glass96
    Bullseye Glass90
    Standard Window Glass“Float Glass”84-87
    Brown Beer Bottles83-90
    BorosilicateBoro32-33

    The typical COE for most glassblowing studios is 96. The raw material used in the form of cullet, silica sand superheated with other chemicals, or batch. We currently use Spruce Pine Batch as our raw material. Furnace workers are typically called “soft glass” glassblowers.

    The boro glassblowers are known as “hard glass” workers, and their material has a higher resistance to thermal shocking and breaking. They start with glass tubes that are heated and blown in front of a torch.

    Each manufacturing plant producing a similar glass item can have varying COEs. For example, bottles made at one plant might have one COE, but at another plant of the same manufacturer, the COE might be different.

    So, if you want us to combine shards of your Glass with ours, we will try it. There will be a fee for the attempt, regardless of the outcome. We will do our best to be successful, but there are no guarantees. If it is successful and you want us to do custom designs with your shards, we will estimate a price (again, it will be a payment due regardless of the outcome). There are no guarantees when you don’t know the COE.

  • The Coloration of Glass

    In Glass, color is created by metal oxides, just like the formation of gemstones and petrified wood in nature. Color is applied to clear molten Glass when making a piece of blown Glass. Color can be applied using frit (glass shards) that come in a variety of sizes. It also is implemented as an overlay using a piece of bar or rod. There are various other color application options, including the use of cane and murrini that you make in the studio.

    Just like in paint pigments, the combination of two transparent colors may result in an unexpected outcome. The mixture may form a muddy color. To keep this from happening, you can separate the colors with a coat of clear. Light does not penetrate opaque colors an unexpected outcome is less of a problem with them.

    Another attribute is that some colors change color while you work with them. They may strike with heat or reduce under a flame, forming exciting combinations. The last aspect is the color’s ability to change due to a reaction with another color. Sulfur based colors react with copper-based colors forming a third color, which you may or may not like. So this is important to consider when you are selecting the color scheme for your piece.

  • State of Matter of Glass

    Most people think of Glass as a solid. It’s fun to expose people to Glass in its more liquid form. When we work with Glass in the hot shop, it is kinetic, it flows, it expands, it contracts, and it dances with us. Glass is beautiful in its uncolored state, where you can take advantage of its optical qualities, and it is fascinating when it takes on color. Glass is a fantastic play material. You can make it into one form if you don’t like it; you can remelt it and form it into something else.

    Glass is paradoxical. It can last for thousands of years or shatter in an instant.

    Skill builder, gather

    Glass reflects the personalities of those who work it.

    • Michael’s joy is exploring his love for color and different forms in Glass.
    • Patrick focuses on patterns and the repetition of elements, probably due to his strong musical background.
    • Glass is attractive to me as a scientist because it is process-oriented. Once you become competent at making the primary forms, you can start to recombine them and make Glass follow your lead. I look at boundaries as something to go beyond and try to mimic geological concepts with Glass like a kid with a chemistry set and no instruction manual. I try to use everything, all my background, and knowledge while exploiting all the resources at hand.

    Without Glass, how would we recognize ourselves? Its reflectivity allows us to see ourselves as we genuinely are or maybe who we are not.

Amanda Lackey
Amanda Lackey
October 11, 2020.
recommends
Glass Blowing Experience for our First Wedding Anniversary. Sally, Eric & Marta knocked our Experience out of the park!!! I was completely in awe of the technique and precision involved in making our beautiful wavy bowl. Im already planning to go back for my birthday once its a cooled off a bit. Want to have ornaments made and some garden decor pieces as well. With the impact COVID is having on so many businesses, I encourage you to go visit this establishment. You won't regret it!!
Michael J 'Ogre' Allen
Michael J 'Ogre' Allen
March 8, 2020.
recommends
Fantastic experience and wonderfully talented staff.
Rita Gradig Timmons
Rita Gradig Timmons
March 1, 2020.
recommends
Took the Ultimate Glassblowing experience today with Patrick. AMAZING!!!
Mishann Johnson Childers
Mishann Johnson Childers
February 16, 2020.
recommends
Great experience with wonderful, patient staff
Jeanine Carey
Jeanine Carey
February 13, 2020.
recommends
Enjoyed having a private experience session with our ladies group. The owners were excellent in explaining the process that we were going to be experiencing. Our final glass pieces were amazing and we can’t wait to pick them up the next day once they have cooled! The gaffer was beyond talented and we can’t wait to see how they look after they have cooled! Everyone had an excellent time! Will be going again!
Luann Hupp-Syers
Luann Hupp-Syers
January 5, 2020.
recommends
Very fun nice employees and very knowledgeable. Would highly recommend for a family to do.
Heather Frantz Loveman
Heather Frantz Loveman
December 10, 2019.
recommends
The hubby and I went made pumpkins on our first visit and the staff was amazing and our pumpkins are due totally to the staff. We enjoyed ourselves so much we back this weekend with my parents and we had just as good to time and met the owner who was amazingly sweet and helpful. Already planning a another visits with friends. I laughingly asked if we could bring wine and was surprisingly was told we could bring wine for afterwards and was shown the backyard patio that was perfect for wine and snacks after making something amazing. Jennifer Weir Stevens Lara Wilkins Melissa Vargas Vasquez Michelle Penney Osterhaus we need to plan an outing after the holidays.
Anita Tikey Sexton
Anita Tikey Sexton
November 11, 2019.
recommends
We had 6 people in town and scheduled with Three Dimensional Visions. It was a great experience for everyone. The guys were great at walking through the steps to making our 🎃. Even our “doubters” had enjoyed it.Fun!
Billy Callaway
Billy Callaway
October 26, 2019.
recommends
Our retired group did a Make Something Workshop. We had a great time. All the staff were very friendly. We would highly recommend this workshop.
Cameron Beck
Cameron Beck
October 21, 2019.
recommends
Awesome awesome awesome!!!! Had a fantastic time today blowing glass and will definitely be returning!!!!