Glass Blowing Classes

One of the most recognized forms of glass art using the artists’ breath to inflate and shape molten glass on the end of hollow rods—beautiful, challenging and physically satisfying! Glass blowing is a popular area of study at The Crucible.

Due to health and safety concerns around the spread of COVID-19, The Crucible’s Hot Shop is currently closed. We look forward to welcoming students back when it is safe. 

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Upcoming Bay Area Glass Blowing Courses

Browse below for all upcoming glass blowing classes. Please note that due to safety concerns surrounding COVID-19, all upcoming Crucible classes are in-person with strict health and safety policies in place for students, faculty, and staff. You must review all Crucible policies before registering.

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Meet The Glass Blowing Department Head: Kier Lugo

Kier has been blowing glass since 1997 and founded The Crucible’s Glass Blowing Department in 2016. He started at The Crucible as a volunteer, and his skills and knowledge now make him an integral part of The Crucible.

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Glass Blowing Adult Classes

The Crucible offers a wide variety of adult classes teaching different glass blowing techniques. Whether you want to master glass stemware or learn the fundamentals of hot glass sculpting, The Crucible has you covered. See the complete list of glass blowing classes offered below.

Note: Due to COVID-19, we’re unable to offer all of the classes listed below at this time. You can sign up to be notified when specific classes are offered or browse a list of upcoming classes here

Bottles and Vases

Bottles and Vases

In this class, students will make bottle and vase forms with an emphasis on elongated necks. The course will focus on three methods of stretching the neck: on the pipe, on the punty, and by using gravity. Students will learn to set up their bubbles, practice heat control, and learn different techniques for puntying, tweezing, trimming, and the fundamentals of creating handles. This is a great intermediate step for beginning glass blowers looking to further their skills, while gaining the fundamental knowledge of how to make classic amphora vases, and more.

PREREQUISITE: Glass Blowing II: Cups Class

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Decorative Glass Pumpkins

Decorative Glass Pumpkins

Try your hand at glass blowing while creating your own decorative glass pumpkins. Learn to safely gather glass from the furnace, apply colors, and shape and sculpt molten glass. These glass art pieces make great gifts all year round! Be prepared to work in the heat!

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Fundamental Forms

Fundamental Forms

Students will learn to make three different essential forms in glass—a cylinder, a hemisphere bowl, and a cone—and master the skill of gathering glass from the furnace. First, develop proficiency in creating each shape with two gathers, then take a third gather and practice the challenge of blowing larger vessel forms. Instructors will work with students individually to address areas that need strengthening.

PREREQUISITE: Glass Blowing II: Cup Class

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Glass Blowing I

Glass Blowing I

Learn the basic skills and techniques to create a personalized hand-blown glasswork. With supportive instruction in a team environment, you will learn to safely work with molten glass, gather glass from the furnace, apply colors, and shape and sculpt molten glass. Be prepared to work in the heat!

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Glass Blowing II

Glass Blowing II

Build upon the skills acquired in Glass Blowing I by learning to make a drinking glass! We will explore the design and creation of various forms of practical (and not-so-practical) drinking ware, including applying color and creating hot bits for feet, handles, and wraps. Students are encouraged to bring a sketchbook.

PREREQUISITE: Glass Blowing I

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Glass Blowing Lab

Glass Blowing Lab

Lab sessions are a great benefit, exclusively for Crucible members! Practice the skills you learn in class and explore new possibilities with your craft. No instruction is provided during lab sessions, but a lab monitor will be present to answer questions, manage safety, and provide overall support. You are free to come and go at your convenience during open lab hours, however you must provide your own materials.

PREREQUISITE: Glass Blowing II and Crucible membership

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Glass Flowers and Mushrooms

Glass Flowers and Mushrooms

Learn the basics of hot glass sculpting, including techniques in gathering molten glass out of the furnace, marvering, color application, and glass shaping. In this three-hour workshop, you will sculpt two different types of both flowers and mushrooms from hot glass.

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Glass implosion bowls

Glass Implosion Bowls

In this entry level, one-day workshop, you will create your own blown glass bowl. Learn how to gather molten glass from the furnace, apply color, then shape it into a bowl using a blowing and sucking technique.

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Glass paper weights

Glass Paper Weights

Demystify the secrets behind glass paperweights with an excellent entry level class for anyone wanting to dabble in hot glass. In this class, you will learn to gather molten glass out of the furnace, apply color, and manipulate and shape the glass. Proper use of traditional glass blowing tools and key terminology are also explained. Expect to create a one-of-a-kind paperweight that will mesmerize your friends!

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Goblets

Goblets

Long considered the holy grail of glass blowing, it is said if you can make a goblet, you can make anything. In this class, you will learn a variety of assembly methods, including pulled cups, straightening, blown feet, avolios, dropped stems, and utilization of the garage, all based in the Venetian technique.

PREREQUISITE: Glass Blowing II: Cups Class

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hearts of glass

Hearts of Glass

Speak the language of love with glass! In this exciting entry-level workshop we simplify the iconic and complex organ that symbolizes love and life—the heart. In our hot shop, students learn basic glass working techniques to blow, shape, and mold hot glass. Your work of art will be in the form of a heart.

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Hot Glass Sculpting I

Hot Glass Sculpting I

Explore the sculptural aspects of molten glass. We will focus on color application, bit work, hot torch, and garage use. Students gain an understanding of the technical vocabulary of glass blowing. You will also learn the advantages and disadvantages of working with blown versus solid glass.

PREREQUISITE: Glass Blowing I

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Perfecting The Punty

Perfecting The Punty

This class is designed to demystify the punty, an important but generally not well understood technique, where much of the work of blowing glass is done. You will learn to effectively make and use the two main types of punty—the cup and the dome—as well as specialty punties. Timing, temperature, partnering, proper usage, fixing, and proper punty removal will be covered.

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shot glass class

Shot Glass Class

Learn to blow glass and make your own colorful shot glass. Students will learn to gather and color hot glass, then shape it into a functional shot glass. Once your glass has cooled, return on Friday for a tasting of fine spirits with local spirit experts.

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Glass Blowing Youth Classes

In the Glass Blowing Department, we offer youth classes specifically for ages 14-18. In these classes, The Crucible provides a unique setting for youth to get hands-on with glass, exploring their creative voices and absorbing real-life lessons in science, technology, engineering, and math. You can see all The Crucible’s offerings for youth here.

youth glass blowing

Youth Glass Blowing I (ages 14-18)

Learn the basic skills and techniques to create a personalized hand-blown glasswork. With supportive instruction in a team environment, you will learn to safely work with molten glass, gather glass from the furnace, apply colors, and shape and sculpt molten glass. Be prepared to work in the heat!

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youth glass blowing ii

Youth Glass Blowing II (ages 14-18)

Continue to work towards glass blowing proficiency in this intermediate-level class. We will utilize new tools, techniques, and an expanded knowledge of the physics involved to help hone our hot shop skills. Students will work in small groups to create both functional and sculptural pieces. Be prepared to work in the heat!

PREREQUISITE: Youth Glass Blowing I

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Youth Glass Blowing Immersion Program

Youth Glass Blowing Immersion Program (ages 14-18)

Dive deep in this beginning and continuing level youth workshop. Students take an immersive step into weeklong study, becoming young artisans along the way. Learn to safely work with molten glass, gather glass from the furnace, apply colors, and shape and sculpt molten glass. You will also be exposed to theory, principles, and extensive techniques that let you design and create your own independent projects. No experience necessary, but be prepared to work in the heat!

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Youth Hot Glass Sculpting

Youth Hot Glass Sculpting (ages 14-18)

Your imagination can come to life in glass! In this class, youth will learn to use bit work, hot torches, and color applications on solid glass to create paper weights, sea animals, mythical creatures, realistic everyday objects, and more!

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Being Prepared For Your Glass Blowing Class

Glass Blowing classes are held on the first floor of our building. Please contact us if you have any questions about accessibility and we will be happy to accommodate.

Students must arrive for class in all-natural fiber clothing, long pants, and closed-toe, closed-heel shoes with socks that protect up to the ankle. Long hair must be tied back. Nylon, polyester, spandex, or other synthetics are not allowed around machines, equipment, or processes that can produce hot fragments, sparks, or flames.

The Crucible requests students always arrive in studio safe clothing when working. Be prepared to work in the heat. Layers are encouraged as the studio can be very cold or very hot.

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