General Policies and Information
What are your hours?
Tuesday thru Friday- 10 AM to 6 PM
Saturday & Sunday- By Appointment Only
(If you may need someone to help you when you come, it's best to stick to Office Hours)
Studio Rental Hours
Tuesday & Wednesday- 9 AM to 9:30 PM
Thursday- 12 PM to 9:30 PM
Friday thru Sunday- 9 AM to 9:30 PM
What are the cancellation policies?
All clients are required to pay for any rentals or classes/workshops if notice of cancellation is not given more than 7 Days prior to the visit, in order to allow us to make the rental or class/workshop available to others.
Early cancellations (at least 7 Days notice) will result in an account credit only. Please contact the business if you wish to request a refund, which may be given conditionally at the discretion of the Public Glass staff.
Team Building Clients: Because of the detailed planning involved in creating a unique experience for your Team Building event, we require payment upon booking. Should you need to change or cancel your reservation, the fees are as follows:
Rescheduling more than 2 weeks from event: $50
Rescheduling within 2 weeks of event date: $100*
Cancellation After Payment: $250
*We apologize, but event changes with less than 7 Days notice cannot be accommodated, refunded or credited due to the nature of our facilities.
Do I have to sign a waiver?
Yes - Everyone who participates in any of the glass making processes we offer needs to fill out a waiver prior to using our facilities. Click here to fill out your online waiver in advance.
Those participants under the age of 18 will need to have a minor waiver filled out by their parent or guardian before their class/event begins. Click here to fill out your child's online waiver in advance.
What are the minimum age requirements?
Fusing and slumping : 10+
Flameworking : 12+
Glassblowing : 14+
Coldworking : 14+
Hot casting: 14+
Kiln casting: 16+
Teen Camps/Youth Program: 13-17
Can I bring my pet? They're really well behaved!
A glass shop can be a very intimidating and potentially dangerous environment for animals. We advise that you leave your furry friends at home for everyone's benefit!
Things to Know Before Your Visit
What should I wear?
-Tie Back Long Hair
-Closed Toed Shoes
-Clothes that can get dirty
Glassblowing / Hot Glass:
-Non-synthetic clothing like cotton (jeans and a t-shirt is ideal.)
-Please take off all large jewelry and watches during your time in the shop. We don't want anything melting while you work in front of hot equipment!
-A removable cotton long sleeve shirt is a good idea, in case you are very sensitive to the heat!
Flameworking, Fusing, Kiln Casting:
-Layers! Our Warm Shop can get very chilly depending on the weather, so its best to bring several layers that can be added or removed as needed
What should I bring?
We recommend bringing a water bottle, especially if you're working in the hot shop. For our six hour classes, please bring a lunch or a hearty snack for the break that happens midway through the lesson.
All class materials and equipment are included in the class fees unless otherwise noted.
Is Public Glass wheelchair accessible?
We have a side door that is wheelchair accessible and we're happy to help guide you to it. Please let us know if you will need access and would like for us to meet you out front, or just have one of our staff members open the door for you when you arrive.
Is there parking?
We have ample perpendicular parking spaces all along Armstong Ave. The spaces along our facade (1750-1760) are all fine to use, despite their "No Parking" labels. However, we ask that you refrain from parking in the no-parking zone directly to the right of our stairs when facing the building, as that individual spot belongs to another tenant.
Can we get to Public Glass on public transportation?
Yes - Transfer from any of the Muni stops along Market Street or From the Embarcadero Bart Station to get on the T line towards Sunnydale. Get off at 3rd & Williams, walk a little further south down 3rd street. You'll turn right on Armstrong Ave. and our location will be on your right about a block down. Click here to look at a map.
Renting Our Studio
Do I need a membership to work at Public Glass?
All experienced glass makers can rent time at the studio, regardless of Public Glass membership status!
We don't require membership of anyone but do recommend it for frequent facility users, since there are some pretty great savings available. Click here to see our membership options.
Do you have Day Rates?
We generally rent our spaces in either hourly or 3 hour increments depending on the facility, but are happy to have a conversation about the needs of specific renters and accomodate whenever possible. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to start a conversation about your rental needs and we'll see what we can do!
I have experience, how do I become a renter?
In order for you to rent our facilities, we must confirm your level of experience and competency in regard to safely handling our equipment. We'll start with a few questions about your prior glassworking experience and may ask that you come in for a safety checkout prior to your rental. We're always happy to add new faces to our community, and will be glad to have you here! The first step is to email email@example.com to express your interest.
Can I show work in your gallery space?
If you are interested in showing in our gallery, please contact our Executive Director, Nate Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org. The best first step will be to send in your high resolution images and resume along with your concept for the show. We may be able to work you into our gallery calendar!
Classes and Events
Do you host private parties?
Yes we do! We have a number of different formats for private parties depending on duration, group size and interactivity levels. To get a sense of what a private event might entail, take a look at our corporate/team building events page. We have several options that aren't listed there but it's a great jumping off point for our discussion. You may e-mail email@example.com for further inquiries.
Do you host corporate team building activities?
Glassblowing is rarely a solo endeavor, making it a perfect activity for corporate team builds! Our class structure enables absolute beginners to work together as a group to help their teammates bring their glass creations to life. We promise that glass is unlike any material that you have worked with! Head over to our corporate/team building events page to get a sense for what we have to offer!
Can we bring in caterers to our event?
Because of the configuration of our studio there are certain limitations to what we can allow, but we try to be as flexible as possible to accomodate your needs. Please obtain pre-approval by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org prior to making any arrangements.
You are welcome to bring whatever snacks or individual meals you desire without preapproval so long as no additonal space accomodations will be needed in order for you to serve and eat it. (We have a 6ft square table and chairs in the hot shop and many tables in the warm shop that can be eaten at with no trouble.) Please bring in all necessary plates, silverware, napkins, toothpicks etc...
Can I bring my school group in for a tour/demonstration?
Sure, we love kids! We have various levels of hands-on tours that we can offer that will fit your budget and your area of interest. Please contact email@example.com to schedule a field trip to Public Glass!
When will my pieces be finished, and when is a good time to pick them up?
Your pieces may be ready in a day, or may take up to several days. No matter what, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm a pick-up time to avoid unnecessary confusion and ensure that your work is ready when you arrive.
Can I take private lessons?
Private lessons are a great way to help actualize your vision on a one-on-one basis with one of our many talented instuctors! We recommend trying an intro class first if you have a specific project in mind if it requires more specificity than exploration. That will help you determine if you'd like to pursue making it yourself or if it might not be best to just send it to our commissions team! Group private lessons can also be accomodated. For more details, e-mail email@example.com.
I'm Pregnant, is it safe for me to blow glass?
You can still blow glass! Many pregnant women have practical safety concerns about glassblowing, but you have nothing to worry about. As long as you stay alert and follow our safety instructions, blowing glass with your baby can be a fun experience! Two is always better than one, and we know numerous female glassblowers (and first time students for that matter) who've worked into their eigth month.
Other important info
What are some good places to eat nearby?
The Bayview is full of fantastic food! Some of our favorites are: Auntie April's, All Good Pizza, Smokestack, and Fox and Lion Bread Co. If you're looking for coffee and pastries, Craftsman and Wolves is within walking distance.
I have a glass project in mind, who do I talk to?
The most efficient way to recieve a quote and detailed information about your project is to e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with a complete description of your idea. Please include measurements, drawings, photos and other pertinent data concerning your idea, and we will do our best to help you.
No matter how detailed you are, we cannot give you a quote immediately after one email and will most likely have follow-up questions and the need to schedule an in-person meeting. Every project is different and it's in everyone's best interest that we treat the quote process with care.
Can you help me fix my broken glass object(s)?
Fixing glass can be a tricky task, and cannot be guaranteed. Please e-mail email@example.com with a detailed description of what needs to be fixed, along with measurements and clear photographs. Oftentimes we'll need to see the piece in person in order to give you an accurate estimate on the cost of repair.
Can I donate my extra glass or glass tools/equipment to Public Glass?
We appreciate your generosity so much and there are a lot of things we can use, but we also have limited storage space at Public Glass and have to be choosy about what we can accept responsibly. Before bringing your donations by please get in touch with us in the office to see if its something we can use or if we might know someone else who could.
How can I teach at Public Glass?
We love to add skilled new instuctors to the Public Glass community! E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org describing your area of interest and availability. Please include your resume, areas of specialization and any other pertinent information that will help us understand your potential role on the team!
Did you know that Public Glass is the only public access, non-profit glassblowing studio in San Francisco? We have called San Francisco home for 20 years and have been in the same location since our founding in 1997!
About every 6 weeks we host a fundraising event called Hot Glass Cold Beer, where visitors get to pick out a handblown glass to fill with unlimited beer and wine throughout the night. We have live glassblowing and flameworking demos, live music, food and a great band... it's all about celebrating San Francisco arts and culture! Join us! Click here for more information about Hot Glass Cold Beer and our other great events!
If you inhale through the pipe while blowing glass, you won't die! Believe it or not that's a common misconception and there's no truth to it. A glassblowing pipe is made out of steel and the air chamber is so long and narrow that the air is cool by the time it hits your lips. Trust us, we've done the research...
Our glass melting furnace runs 24 hours a day for 49 continuous weeks out of the year at a working temperature of 2100 degrees farenheit!
Even though everything appears orange while making hot glass, it's actually not! The color seen in glass during the creation process, whether that be in glass videos or live, is actually refracted heat making the object appear orange. Once everything is cool it is a completely different color than it appeared while warm!
The glass blowpipe was invented in 50 BCE, and hasn't changed much since then! Of course glassmaking equipment has progressed monumentally since then, but in many ways the techniques and processes are strikingly similar to the way they have always been.