You need to walk through the gallery of local glass art studios and commercial glass producers to see the wonders of decorative blown glass. More glassworkers are using multiple glassmaking techniques. The trend is towards durability, form and functionality. But contemporary glassmaking retains old-world craftsmanship. If you’re seeking hand-blown glass decorations in Minnesota, look no further than these five great locations.
Lake Superior Art Glass
202 East Superior St.
Duluth, MN 55802
This local studio teaches glass art and does commercial and custom glasswork. Artists, many from the Midwest, create glassware using hand-blown and flame work techniques. From the decorative to the functional, the studio turns out wall art, glass jewelry, tableware, vessels, vases and more. Examples of the studio’s work are bottle stoppers, water pitchers, wine goblets, sculptures, marbles and paper weights. Every glass piece is one of a kind. You’ll enjoy watching the artists at work inside the studio or from the sidewalk. Live demos can be arranged for large groups and organizations. The studio also sells torch work supplies and tools.
Glass Art Design, Inc.
427 10th Ave., North
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55401
Located in the Minneapolis warehouse district, Glass Art Design specializes in custom residential and commercial glass treatments. Using a variety of glassmaking processes, experienced artisans collaborate on leaded and stained glass art deco for entrances, room dividers, lobbies, logos, plaques, furniture, walls and other commercial and residential uses. Beauty meets pragmatism in the finished products. A thermopane window is overlaid with a satin etched vine pattern. Leaded glass sidelights have applied transparent color staining. Glass Art Design has created art sculptures for the University of Minnesota and various corporate clients. The company has also done creative commercial glasswork for organizations such as Children’s Hospital in Twin Cities.
32 West First St.
Duluth, MN 55802
Legacy Glassworks specializes in hand-blown glass tobacco pipes and small glasswork. Its glass products are made in the U.S., with the majority produced in Minnesota. Legacy’s tobacco pipes and pipe accessories have been sold to many Minnesota tobacco shops. Legacy’s artists also produce custom wine and beer glasses, textured goblets in vibrant colors, bottle stoppers in paisley patterns, delicate figurines, decorative centerpieces, custom glass jewelry and other items. Most are for sale along with other merchandise, such as shirts and hoodies.
905 Decatur Ave., North
Golden Valley, MN 55427
A home furnishings and home décor store, Always Mod is an authorized online retailer of goods from Finnish designers. It is a distributor of glassware from Iittala, a Finnish glassmaker that started as a factory in 1881. Simple and chic in design, Iittala glassware is durable as well as beautiful. Glassblowers and designers collaborate intensively to create pieces that are functional, contemporary and authentic. Always Mod sells Iittala bowl sets, drinking glasses, dinnerware, carafes, ice pitchers and decorative glassware.
1315 6th St.
Howard Lake, MN 55349
The hand-blown glass figurines from Innocast Corp. are sculpted from lead crystal and optical glass. Sleek and intricate, they reflect natural and indoor light. Imagine yourself wearing a lead crystal cowboy hat or industrial hard hat. A studio and casting foundry, Innocast also does stone and cast bronze work. The company has received awards and commissions from many profit and non-profit organizations, Fortune 500 companies among them.
Stone Arch Glass Studio
316 Buchanan St., NE
Minneapolis, MN 55413
MN Legit features hand-made blown glasswork by local artists. Scientific hand-blown glass water pipes are the latest glass art deco addition. The studio’s pipes and funky art objects are made from borosilicate glass for higher durability. MN Legit does glass electroforming, a process that allows artists to layer thicker structures under other materials. It also customizes glasswork using electroforming, sandblasting, and art decal applications.
Linda Cameron has written home design, home improvement and lifestyle articles for The Boston Globe and City Shopper Magazine. She has related interests in the building industry, travel, real estate and financing. She is a contributor to Examiner, House Spot, Techsling and Behance, covering topics on career, people, businesses, education and technology.