Blow your own bauble at London Glassblowing

Truly bespoke Christmas decorations

Professional glassblowers will guide customers through the bauble-making process
Professional glassblowers will guide customers through the bauble-making process | Image: Ester Segarra

One way to ensure a truly bespoke Christmas decoration is DIY. Beyond childhood’s paper chains and glitter lies a more adult activity: the opportunity to create an individual glass Christmas tree bauble at Bermondsey’s London Glassblowing (£50 for 15 minutes).

Expertly created baubles are also available to buy at the venue
Expertly created baubles are also available to buy at the venue | Image: Ester Segarra

Nervous novices will be hand-held throughout by expert glassblowers. The process involves adding coloured granules to clear molten glass, reheated to over 1,200 degrees Celsius. Next, the lungs get to work; after a deep breath, air is introduced to create a bubble, while the blowing iron is simultaneously turned.

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Naturally, the cooler the glass becomes, the further it hardens, so any strange shapes can be ironed out by placing the glass back in the furnace. After a couple of days’ gradual cooling, baubles are ready for collection; expertly created examples are also available to buy (from £45 to £300).

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Peter Layton, who founded London Glassblowing in 1976, is a regular in the studio over Christmas and will often be on hand to assist and advise. Mince pies and mulled wine will be served – the latter perhaps best imbibed after time spent with a furnace and molten glass.

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