Every year I start fielding calls from customers asking about how to protect their glass artwork in different weather conditions. I have been making and selling my artwork for over 15 years now. I have customers from Alaska to Arizona which demonstrates how durable glass can be in different climates and weather conditions. What follows are some of the more common questions I am asked about caring for glass artwork.
How durable is glass?
Glass is extremely durable in cold weather – snow or rain. It will not crack like ceramic or porcelain artwork or pottery. The reason is that glass is not porous like other materials. Most ceramic containers crack because water penetrates the pores and expands inside these pores when freezing. Glass on the other hand is not porous and therefore cannot trap water. This is why glass is a more favorable choice for garden artwork. What causes glass to crack is freezing water around the glass in a contained space.
What glass artwork could be damaged if left outside?
Most of our glass artwork is fine left outside year round. However there are a few pieces that need to be treated differently in winter weather. Prior to freezing temperatures, artwork such as bird baths or hanging vases need to be flipped upside down. This will allow any water to drain out of the glass. If the water freezes within the bird bath or vase it could possibly crack the glass when expanding. These pieces can also be stored in a garage, shed, home, etc. Pond floats should also be removed from standing water for these same reasons. Floats can still provide winter color in garden as long as they are placed in garden beds or containers instead of within standing water. Our flowers are displayed at a 45 degree angle so they will not collect water. Fountains can be left outside during the winter as long as leaves and debris are removed so that they do not clog the drainage hole for the water. Icicles and icicle lights are designed for year-round use.
Will the color in my glass artwork fade if left out year-round?
No, the colors used in the glass are permanent. They will never fade from sunlight or wear. They are created to be enjoyed year-round. The everlasting nature of glass is what makes it a purchase worth investing in.
Where should glass be placed in the garden?
Your glass can provide a singular focal point in your garden or can also be nestled among your plants for a nice surprise as you stroll through your garden. When selecting a space for your glass artwork we recommend you not place any glass art under large trees where falling limbs in a windstorm could damage your pieces.
What is the best way to clean my glass?
Using dish soap and warm water works perfectly. It is also fine to use a mixture of vinegar and water or standard window glass cleaner such as Windex.
We hope this little primer will help you care for your glass art for years to come!