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Touring Newton: A Unique Stop to Liven Up Your Trip

By Kristen Bosse

Although the town of Newton has many different activities and restaurants to entertain the average tourist, it is always nice to have something a little different available for those prefer a more exciting trip. There is perhaps nothing more exciting than learning about the art of flameworking at Newton's Fiamma Glass Studio. For those that aren't familiar with it, Flameworking, is the art of manipulating molten hot glass using a torch. It is one of mankind's oldest crafts, preceding "traditional" furnace glassblowing by several thousand years. Using glass rods and tubes, class members are able to create beads, figurines, ornaments, jewelry, sculpture, and much more. Even in the introductory classes for beginners (perfect for tourists), classmates can create various figurines, including marbles and beads. Plus lets face it, working with fire is cool!

Fiamma Glass Studio

Fiamma Glass offers a full range of classes including several introductory offerings. These classes are open to all experience levels and generally take place several times a week. Their most popular beginner class is their 2-hour Introduction to Bead making and Flameworking class In addition, they offer a number of intermediate to advanced classes, including Level 2 and 3 Flameworking and Bead Making, as well as Hollow Forms classes which begin to explore the use of tubing in making vessels, sculpture and jewelry. All classes are open to anybody 14 or older who can safely operate the equipment.

Those who prefer a more intimate experience with friends or family can sign up for a private lesson with one of their experienced professionals. Whether you feel as though you will need more personal attention, or simply want a private environment for your family, the Fiamma Glass studio can be as accommodating as possible. Gretchen, resident of Jamaica Plain and previous visitor of the studio commented on her great experience.

"I really enjoyed the beginning flame working class. Katerina and David are great teachers who make an intimidating-looking medium safe and accessible. They started with an explanation of the tools and techniques, emphasizing the safety precautions. Then, they led us step-by-step through making a marble and a small fish figurine. Everyone in the class successfully completed the projects and had a good time in the process."

Visitors who find that they love the process of flameworking should be sure to check out their special events this year. Talented glass artists will be visiting the studio periodically to give instruction on their specialty. For example, Sue Underwood will be visiting on March 29th to show off her sculptural floral beads collection and help class members make similar creations. Check out their website at to look at all class descriptions and see what they have to offer.

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