Introducing our Glassblowing class!

Once in a life time glass blowing experience!

One of the most common questions we receive from our customers after they've watched a live glassblowing demonstration at our gallery is "Do you teach a class?" At long last, the answer is now a resounding 'yes!' Wimberley Glassworks is proud to offer our first-ever glassblowing class!


[Experience glassblowing, shaping and coloring first hand!]

Beginning later this month and running through the end of March WGW now offers a bi-monthly glassblowing class. In small groups of 6 to 10 people you can experience the thrill of coloring, shaping and creating your own hand blown glass flower or elegant paperweight. Perfect for individuals or couples, WGW now offers an extraordinary opportunity to become part of the 2000 year old glass blowing tradition!


[Glassblower Manda Barnes offering instruction on how to make a glass lily.]

Learn from our expert instructor Manda Barnes about the history, tools and techniques of glass blowing. From jacks to blow pipes to gathers and molds, Manda will teach students the tools of the trade.


Glass Lily

[An indigo and orange lily in the style of those created in our glassblowing class.]

You choose the colors, you help shape the glass, you create your own paperweight or glass lily. A day later, after its had time to cool, you can pick up your work of art and take it home!


Guest shaping glass in glassblowing class

To buy your ticket to our glassblowing class of your choice please visit out EventBrite page! Or purchase the experience for someone else with a gift certificate! 


Eventbrite - Glass Blowing Class

Solar Ray Rising - The creation of an art installation

“Daylight streaming through the windows allows the unique textures and contours of the glass to glisten. At night the piece is ignited with an auroral display of color against a dark sky, using the latest RGB technology. Playing off our tower’s architecture, as it arches towards the sun, this installation exemplifies how the Glassworks’ designs create wonderment and discovery in public spaces.”

 -Tim DeJong, Head Gaffer and Founder of Wimberley Glassworks



Created with 221 pieces of glass and spanning 144 square feet, Solar Ray is a graceful assemblage of textured glass that was 6 months in the making. But how is an art glass installation designed? There are stages to every installation;


- Concept

- Glass Prototyping

- Space Planning and Layouts

- Hardware and Support Systems

- Glass Production

- Installation



The Solar Ray art installation began as an idea to create a focal point at night that was just as vibrant as our yellow tower is during the day. The inspiration for the shape really took cues from the architecture of the Tower itself; the angle of the roof and the peaks of the windows

 concept render 1

 [A 3-D render of the tower with an early concept of the Solar Ray art installation.]


The general shape of the art installation itself is integrated into the process to help create a unity and balance to the design. In this case the Solar Ray installation was made to suggest a concave surface with the glass hung higher on the edges and progressively lower toward the middle.


concept render 2

[The Solar Ray installation was initially conceived with 21 separate layers to create a ball-like concave effect.]


Glass Prototyping

Once the idea had been fully realized the practical requirements of creating the art installation becomes the primary focus. This involves an exploration of the possibilities for color, texture and shape each piece of glass to be used.


glass test colors

[Glass prototypes with a variety of hues and opacities. Ultimately the Primavera, Diamond Plate and Opaline patterns were chosen to make up the majority of the Solar Ray installation due to the way they refracted and diffused light.]


In this case, we went with three different textures, of different opacity. The Diamond Plate pattern allows the light to travel most cleanly through the glass and cast the most complete shadows on the walls. The Primavera was slightly more opaque with the textured pattern more severely distorting the light as it passed through it. The Opaline pattern was set with a ribbon of opaque glass through its length, fully diffusing any light as it passed through the ribbon.

 With the prototypes finished and finishes selected the final layout and space planning can begin.


Space Planning and Layouts

Now that we know the size and shape of the individual pieces of glass, we can start to lay out how the installation will fit into the physical space it will be placed. Careful measurements are made of the interior dimensions of the WGW tower and wire lengths are determined.  This is the final plan showing the arrangement of the three different textures along with the length of wire used to hang each piece. 

space plan for Solar Ray

[The Solar Ray installation covered a total of 144 square feet using 221 individual pieces.]


Renders are created and shared with the client to show how the piece might look in the space. There may be many iterations of both the plan and the render before we reach the final look.


Hardware & Support Systems

At this point, we determine what hardware we would need to achieve the desired effect, this usually includes doing mockups- In this case we did two, one to check the hardware with the glass and the movement of the pieces, and one with the rgb lighting system to see how the placement needed to be and how it would interact with the glass.

led testing

 [Initial tests of the LED lighting system.]



Each piece of the Solar Ray installation begins as a large ball of glass was gathered on the end of a blow pipe. This ball of glass is pressed into heavy gauge plate steel to flatten. In this process patterns could be pressed into the surface.


diamond plate

[When the diamond plate pattern is created the glass is pressed into this textured plate steel to imbue the surface of the glass with its unique criss-cross pattern. This pattern is then pulled into a diamond shape as the glass is stretched and twisted into a ribbon]


The glass ball is then raised the top of a ladder and pulled downward into a uniform strip using sheers to grip its end. While the glass is slowly stretched into a strip, a third glass blower will cool portions of its surface with compressed air to insure that all of the glass is at the same temperature. This helps create a uniform shape.



[While the glass is slowly stretched into a strip, a third glass blower will cool portions of its surface with compressed air to insure that all of the glass is at the same temperature. This helps create a uniform shape.]


While the glass is still hot, paddles made of cork are used to twist the strip into the signature ribbon of the Solar Ray installation. This ribbon is measured against a jig to make sure that the curves, twists and length are proper. If the ribbon of glass is correct it is blasted with another long jet of compressed air and cooled to lock in the shape. The glass ribbon is then put into an Annealing Kiln to slowly cool over 24 hours.

Finally, the glass is cold worked, polished, cut into the proper lengths and wired to be hung as part of the installation.



 Installation in action

[The Solar Ray art installation as it is being hung, one wired ribbon of glass at a time]

The installation process involved the wiring and hanging of 221 individual pieces of glass over a period of only two days. A pair of LED lighting rigs were installed into overhangs on the south and west walls, projecting slowly shifting fields of color onto the Solar Ray installation.  While the lighting effects are visible during the day the most dramatic time to view the installation is at night.

Outside view of Solar Ray at Night

[The Solar Ray installation as viewed after dark.]

The fields of color refract beautifully through the Primavera and Diamond plate ribbons of glass, casting shadows and lighting patterns on the walls behind the display. The Opaline glass with its frosted provides a wonderful diffusing effect.  


Solar Ray installation from Gallery floor

[The patterns of color projected onto the Solar Ray installation create wonderful lighting effects throughout the Wimberley Glassworks tower atrium.]


Solar Ray Installation from Window-red and yellow

[The shifting fields of color drift from blue to red to green as they are cast upon the ribbons of glass.]


Solar Ray Installation by Daylight

[During the day the LED lighting is far less apparent while the sun’s rays refracted through the glass predominate.]

Please drop by the Wimberley Glassworks gallery and take a look for yourself!

Solar Ray Opener Recap

Thank you to everyone who  helped make our Solar Ray Opener on September 17th such a special event!


Another packed room as Tim demonstrates the glassblowing techniques used in the creation of the Solar Ray installation.


Commercial Lighting Designer Ashley Main shares details of the design and installation of the Solar Ray project.


The Solar Ray installation glistens just after sunrise as the contours of each ribbon of glass catch and refract the soft rays of morning light.


Slowly shifting fields of color are projected onto the Solar Ray installation as it is lit for the first time.


A special thank you to Palmer's Restaurant Bar and Courtyard for providing the delicious food, Patio Dolcetto Wine Lounge and Bier Garden and their wide selection of wines served at the event, and the Outliers for an evening of wonderful music. Please visit the gallery to see the new Solar Ray installation for yourself!

SolarRay Opener September 17th

Join Wimberley Glassworks as we present a stunning array of glass, September 17th 5-8pm. Watch the illumination of the Glassworks’ latest art glass installation transition into the night.

Daylight streaming through the windows allows the unique textures and contours of the glass to glisten. At night the piece is ignited with an auroral display of color against a dark sky, using the latest RGB technology. Playing off our tower’s architecture, as it arches toward the sun, this installation exemplifies how the Glassworks’ designs create wonderment in public spaces.

“Years ago, after my discovery of the sunset beaming through winter ice buildup on the railings at Niagara Falls, I began to put light through my art glass. Today, light emits through all my works on a grander scale leaving a sense of discovery that is a thought provoking and positive experience”, says Tim de Jong, owner and lead designer at Wimberley Glassworks.

Meet the artist and peruse the gallery of art glass collections and blown glass lighting. Register below for the drawing and to enjoy an evening of glassmaking, music by the Outliers, and fine wine tasting by Patio Dolcetto, and appetizers by Palmers Restaurant, of San Marcos.

See you then!

Eventbrite - Solar Ray Opener 


Esplosione di Colori Art Opening Recap

Great time at our Esplosione di Colori art glass opening July 3rd and pleased to have representatives visiting from Granite Properties of Plano, our most supportive commercial client.

Standing room only during the demonstration while Tim created an ink black Esplosione platter with blue color bursts.


This piece was proudly auctioned off to support Homes for our Troops. Wine tasting and craft beers provided by Patio Dolcetto were enjoyed by all.






Thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate Wimberley Glassworks' new platter series. This series is available now in three color patterns at an introductory price through the month of July. Call the gallery to order at 512-393-3316.