Modern design with Melanie Abrantes

Melanie and I met in person to discuss her designs, dimensions and color questions. After explaining my glass making process and color applications, Melanie set off to the glass color shop to look at sample colors. Our next meeting was in the hot glass studio, my office, where I would shape Melanies designs into life. 

I have had the good fortune of working with studios in California, Ohio, England and Italy, often filling the role of head maker or head gaffer. As head gaffer my job is to make the studios designs, ideas and product line to specific dimensions and color requirements, often with a team of assistants. This can be a very demanding role and requires in-depth knowledge of each aspect of the glass making process from start to finish. Throughout the years and thousands of hours in such possitions I have honed my skills and abilities to be able to make work for designers like Melanie. 

When looking at Melanie’s Marais Vases it is important to understand and appreciate the level of craftsmanship that went into each piece. Each piece embodies the culmination of Melanie’s experience wood turning, her growing designs and my 16+ years of experience making glass and my ability to listen and understand what Melanie is trying to convey and achieve. The Marais Vases are a brilliant example of what can happen when experienced makers come together to create something beyond their own capabilities. 



Sharing a teaser of Jason Stropko’s incredible glass work

We are sitting in the office, editing photographs of Jason’s work and it’s just too exciting to not share this single teaser image of an upcoming bigger post with a range of incredible vessels made by Jason..

Shaping vessels like this and creating snug fitting lids requires high technical skills that take time, focus and deep passion for the medium to develop. One of our biggest wishes is to develop a whole exhibition full of lidded vessels like this one, in a range of voluptuous shapes, with elegant pointed lids.


New photographs will appear on this page as soon as Birgit get through the edits..

Sorry, this really was a teaser!



(Last but not least!!! Custom modification requests to a custom made vessel are ALWAYS welcome, shapes, colours, opacity, translucency, shape, voluptuousness, execution: your vision is our command! Make a drawing and share your ideas with us on Jason’s Facebook wall! What would you like to see!?!? If you would like to order a piece please use the contact tab on this website and we can take it from there. Looking forward to hearing from you!)


How lidded vessels are made

It’s been quite a while since we made a post from the glass studio! Here you can see some of the working process that goes into creating lidded vessels, which serve beautifully for functional as well as decorative use.

They make amazing trophies but also can be custom made for sweets and table displays or special flower arrangements. If you send Jason Stropko your design he can give you a quote and create pretty much any object of desire thanks to a well rounded technical ability that takes many years to master!

Jason has now been making glass full time professionally for 10 years + 4 years study before beginning on this career path!

Jason’s colour samples for a blown & sculpted glass project…

To get ready to make additional seeds for the ongoing nut and seed project it is necessary to try out different glass colour batches, blow them out and see how different colours react with each other. It takes trial and error and educated judgments to find those glass colours that work best to make life like blown glass seeds and glass nuts.

Glass colour samples in Jason's studio, getting ready for a range of seeds and nuts to be made soon.
Glass colour samples in Jason’s studio, getting ready for a range of seeds and nuts to be made soon.

Assisting Alex Abajian making large blown glass lampshades for a commission

As an outsider I just keep finding it amazing how much physical energy and simultaneous fine tuned technical skill goes into making each object that emerges from the hands of any of the glassmakers here at the studio.

Alex Abajian making custom lampshades matching existing sets precisely. When you work with technically advanced glassmakers you will get what you pay for: very special glass pieces!
Alex Abajian making custom lampshades matching existing sets precisely. When you work with technically advanced glassmakers you will get what you pay for: very special glass pieces!

Alex Abajian has some serious skills and a few more years of experience than most of the other glassmakers around the studio. It is always additionally exciting when two or more talented makers work together!

Blown Glass Sunflower Seed (large)

Watching the entire process of Jason creating a single seed takes a good 30 – 45 minutes. Many steps are involved in the making of each individual seed. Good timing and control of the glass is essential. ..

Jason Stropko in the process of creating another blown & sculpted glass sunflower seed for his collection of glass nuts & seeds ..

Jason Stropko creating another blown & sculpted glass sunflower seed for his signature collection of glass nuts & seeds ..
Jason Stropko with an almost completed blown & sculpted glass sunflower seed from his collection of glass nuts & seeds .. (Available for purchase anytime.)

White cane work sample

white cane work in a clear drinking glass
white cane work in a clear drinking glass

A beautiful finely made drinking glass with fine white cane work, creating these gorgeous helix patterns embedded within the glass.

This process requires quite some time to prepare each cane of white glass, which then gets cut into shorter strands, heated until soft like stiff honey, stretched and twisted with other clear and white cane to create each individual helix form. These are cooled in the annealer overnight. Cut again into short strands, laid in order, a hot glass cylinder os rolled over the strands of cane, the canes stick to the hot glass, then more heating, more shaping occurs; then finally the shape of a drinking glass emerges after shaping and blowing and shaping and reheating..

This process requires finely tuned skills, patience, focus and a level of endurance, because this is not something you can put down for half an hour when you want to take a break..

Sets of 2 or more made to order.