Making love is delicate. Making love is expensive. If things get too cool, they’ll break. If things get too hot, they’ll burn. It takes a lot to make love. If you don’t give enough, it just won’t be pretty. But, but, but, if you can make love well, it’s well worth the effort and, frankly, it becomes a story worth writing about.
In today’s post, we will tell you how we at glassybaby make “love.” This post will not divulge the scuttlebutt from any office romances. Nor will it offer amorous tips a la Cosmo magazine. It’s not about the type of love The Beatles sing about, and it’s certainly not about the type that Justin Bieber sings about. No, no. To your relief (or disappointment?), this post describes the creation of a red-colored glassybaby with a little heart on its shoulder.
Love begins in Germany. Well, actually the raw materials for love begin all over the world. Waves presage love when they pound rocks into sand, Silica dioxide, which becomes clear glass. The colors of love are side effects: selenium is a byproduct of copper refineries, cadmium is a byproduct of zinc production. But all these ingredients come together, like the fanciest cars, in Germany. The silica and selenium and cadmium arrive, in powder form, in a small town called Neugablonz, an hour west of Munich. There, an old family company called Kugler Colors adds a couple more secret ingredients and melts it into red glass.
But love reaches its full potential in Seattle. Not to brag, but we bring out the best in love. To do so, we don’t shortchange it: we use a large drop of molten color for each glassybaby. Hold out your middle and pointer fingers together. That width, and the length from your first knuckle to your middle finger tip — that’s about half the amount of solid, deep red color we drop into our love, every time we make it.
The best love also requires tender sensitivity and masterful timing. I wasn’t kidding when I said love will break if it gets too cool, or burn if it gets too hot. Love is much more finicky than kindness, say, or hope. Just a tiiiny bit too hot and… Ssssssss. It turns brown. And then there is no saving it. The love is gone.
We’ve had a lot of practice making love, so we can make love pretty well, every time — so well that we can literally sell it. And we’ve given love a brand-new finishing touch: the heart. What happens is, each glassybaby comes out of the annealing oven, where its temperature has gradually dropped by 2,000 degrees over the course of 24 hours, and is inspected for quality. If the love is good enough, glassybaby-grade, then Raya, our sorceress of glass science and development, gives it a big kiss, and the glassybaby gets so happy that a little heart blossoms, right on its shoulder.
Just kidding. The real way we make the heart is more complex, and less romantic. But we’ll keep that a secret for now, because when you’re making love, it helps to have a few tricks up your sleeve.
– Mericos Rhodes
giving, color, craft writer