All posts by Patricia Linthicum

Firetainment Table

Firetainment Tables

The summer holiday season is just around the corner.  If outdoor entertainment is what you are planning, then a Firetainment table is just what you need!

Looking At Glass friend, Tim Whaley, represents many sustainable products through his company, Sustainable Matrix.  One of the product lines that Tim represents is Firetainment.  Firetainment ranks very high up the “cool products that use glass” meter.

Firetainment Inc. offers a fire table product “that stands alone in today’s world of outdoor entertainment.”  The fire tables are an amazing combination of Hibachi grill, fire feature, and outdoor table.

If saving space is important to you, this product is just what you need.  Of course, I love the addition of the four-sided clear glass safety screen to the tables!

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Firetainment Table
Riviera Firetainment Table
Riviera Firetainment Table
Naples Firetainment Table
Naples Firetainment Table
Madrid Firetainment Table
Madrid Firetainment Table
Firetainment Table
Firetainment Table

btw…If you are hungry, beware of the delicious food in the video. [drool and slurp!] Heck, I think a Firetainment table is worth buying just so I can sit around and stir-fry fresh summer vegetables and toast marshmallows for S’mores. [drool and slurp!]

Green Lantern House, John Grable Architects

Can a Fireplace Make A Home?

How can something so common as a fireplace be so incredibly special that it stands out more than anything else in a home?

I spotted just such a fireplace on Pinterest last week and followed the links to find that it is the creation of John Grable Architects.  The Green Lantern home, in San Antonio, Texas, is full of innovative design however, it was definitely the fireplace that made me swoon and my heart go pitter-patter.

On the upper level of the home, the fireplace opens to a large, curved sofa that provides a cozy conversation area.  The all glass design gives loungers an unobstructed view of the outdoors.

In most homes, it is a common practice to place a television above the fireplace.  In the Green Lantern, the reverse happens and the television is placed below the fireplace.  The upper-level fireplace becomes an artistic statement in the large room.  And again, from the lower-level, occupants can see through the fireplace to the upper-level.

Green Lantern House, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern House, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects
Green Lantern Home, John Grable Architects

Congratulations to John Grable Architects!  The Green Lantern home recently won a TxA 2014 Design Award.   Yep, this fireplace is a winner and makes this home a design showcase.

You can find more photos of Green Lantern and additional information about the project at John Grable Architects on Facebook.

 

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Coming Out Of The Closet

Today I am coming out of the closet.  I want to talk to you about a part of my life that I have not shared with you.

The Truth Comes Out…

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Here’s my little secret.

Most of you know that I have an online decorative glass store, The Glass Market.  What you probably don’t know is that beginning in October, 2012, I began working at a Top 20 retail company as an E-commerce Fulfillment Team Lead.  Hey, if you want to learn about a subject, learn it from the big dogs.  Right?  It is like moving to a country where you don’t know the language.  You quickly learn about their culture and how to communicate.  I used the same principle in learning about E-commerce, business logistics and operations, and the retail business.  I jumped in and I have devoured the mentioned subjects.

So, why am I telling you this?  Well, for starters, after about a year of working the full-time job at the major retailer, running The Glass Market,  and writing this blog, I found it nearly impossible to keep up with it all.  At some point, adjustments needed to be made both for my sanity and the sanity of my family.  The result was reduced Looking At Glass blog posts.

Secondly, I have become more and more aware that providing your customers many ways to do business with you is vital to keeping your business profitable in the future.

I feel a real sense of urgency when it comes to  E-Commerce.

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I am not saying that starting tomorrow you need to close your shop doors and only sell your products online.  If you have a brick and mortar business, you actually have an advantage over strictly online stores.  It is much easier to add an online store to an existing brick and mortar shop than it is to add a brick and mortar store to an online store.  The term used to describe this inclusive commerce segment is Multichannel Commerce.  Even the term Multichannel Commerce is on the verge of becoming obsolete.  You will now see the term “Customer Touchpoint” slipping in.  For the sake of this blog post, I will be using Multichannel Commerce.

A Multichannel Commerce business is a business that makes buying a product seamless to their customers.  Customers can buy a product from their phone, tablet, PC, telephone, fax, or walk-in.  As a  Multichannel Commerce company, you provide customers a way to buy your product in a manner that is most comfortable and convenient for them.

What is E-commerce?

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Part of a Multichannel Commerce strategy is E-commerce.  E-commerce means different things to different businesses.  At its most basic definition.  E-commerce allows promoting and selling a product via electronic means. Depending on your size and customer base you can include under the E-commerce umbrella:

  • Website customer contact forms
  • Website request for quote forms
  • Social Media
  • Newsletter sign-up forms
  • Account Registration
  • Product catalogs
  • Blogs
  • Customer Support/FAQ’s/Tutorials
  • Shopping cart/Order Form
  • Checkout

When looking at E-commerce for your multichannel business,  consider what can be done electronically that is currently being handled by hand.  If you don’t want to ship your product, give your customers the opportunity to purchase online and pick up at your location.  This E-commerce addition will give the customer another buying option for your product while saving you time.

And Another Thing…

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For heaven’s sake, don’t have a slick Multichannel business and then have an out-dated Fulfillment operation.  Operations and Logistics can be the undoing of a great Multichannel Commerce effort.

I recently needed to order a product from a company.  This company has made a large investment in creating a social media presence.  When I needed to make a purchase, I was surprised that the company had no online quote/order form on their website.  Reluctantly, I sent them an email requesting a quote.

Three days later, I had received no response.  I eventually called and received the quote over the phone.  I told the customer service rep that I was ready to buy.  I had my credit card in my hand, ready to purchase the product.  I was told that the company procedure was to email or Fax me a “New Account Form.”  Twenty-four hours later, I received the email.  Guess what they need to know?  My company name, address, and credit card number!

At a minimum, this information could have been handled over the telephone.  At best, the whole purchase could have been made quickly online via the company website.  Not to mention the fact that the social media persona did not match the order/fulfillment operations.

Take a look at your Fulfillment Operations from walk-in to online store.  Count how many steps it takes to Fulfill an order and consider updating any procedures that would not work in a Multichannel Commerce business.  It is easy to do things the way they have always been done.  It takes much less effort to adjust to new procedures.  The concern is that eventually the processes are taking up more time and effort than they should.

Start Now

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As you can tell, I could go on and on about Multichannel Commerce.  And, in particular, E-commerce.  It has become a passion.  I continue to learn as much as I can about the subject every day and I felt compelled to share what I have learned with you.  I believe that it is time to include Multichannel/E-commerce strategies and education in our trade shows, industry organizations, and publications.  This subject is, in my humble opinion, THE MOST IMPORTANT TOPIC for the glass industry to address at this time.

If you would like to comment or contribute a blog post on this subject, I will gladly welcome your input.  Let’s start talking about Multichannel/E-commerce!

photo credits:

Photo 1:  http://www.pinterest.com/pin/428686458252190632/

Photo 2: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/30188259976511550/

Photo 3: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/194428908883199490/

Photo 4: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/495044184010284993/

Photo 5: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/102668066474888399/

 

 

Absinthe, Front View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.

Boym Partners Cubist Vases

Boym Partners Cubist Vases

I recently found the Cubist Vases by Boym Partners Inc. via Pinterest.  I followed the Pinterest link and it took me to an article posted on Dezeen.com that was published back in August, 2010.

I am a researcher at heart and I love following the leads that bring me to a new learning experience.  It is, in the most basic term, a real treasure hunt.  The Dezeen article lead me to the Boym Partners Inc. website.  There, I found the treasure.

Constantin and Laurene Boym are the founders of Boym Partners Inc. in New York City.  This contemporary design practice created the Cubist Vases as first in a series of Homage to Modernism in the Boym Editions.

The Cubist Vases are UV bonded crystal shapes that pay homage to the Cubist paintings of Picasso and Braque.

Absinthe, Front View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Absinthe, Front View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Absinthe, Back View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Absinthe, Back View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Guitar, Front View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Guitar, Front View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Guitar, Back View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.
Guitar, Back View, Cubist Vases, Boym Partners, Inc.

I checked and these vases are still available for purchase from Boym Partners.  CLICK HERE to go to their online store.

More Looking At Glass News!

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Want to share your business, event, or product with the world?  you can now share your business, event, or product by simply clicking on the Advertise Here boxes on the right side of the Looking At Glass (www.lookingatglass.com) web page.

There are 2 sizes of ads available; 240×120 or 125×125.   When you add you banner ad to the Looking At Glass website, you will receive an email confirmation with a link that you can use to watch your banner ad stats.

It is super easy to add your information to the Looking At Glass website.  Need more incentive to give it a try?  Sign up before May 31, 2014 and receive 50% off!  Just use the MayFifty coupon codeHurry! There are a limited number of spaces available.  Don’t miss this 50% off opportunity.

Don’t forget to visit the Today I Am Looking At… page on the Looking At Glass website.  I add lots of amazing glass photos daily!

 

 

Painting With Glass

I just pinned this video featuring Catharine Newell on Oregon Art Beat dating back to 2007 from the Fused Glass Board by Monica Brainerd.

This video makes me want to try painting with glass frit :-)

Click on the photo below to view fused glass art by Catharine Newell at Bullseye Glass Gallery.

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Fused Glass Art by Catharine Newell

Want to see more Catharine Newell Glass Art?  CLICK HERE to view a search on Pinterest.

Spring-Clean Your Blog in 5 Easy Steps by Ben Huberman

I just spent 2 days off from work this week cleaning my office.  Yes, it took 2 days.  Yes, I am ashamed.  Right now, I’m feeling a bit like a hoarder.  How could I possibly have accumulated so much stuff?
There is no better feeling than a freshly cleaned, decluttered office.  All of this purging got me thinking about doing the same for my blog.
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I remembered seeing a blog post by Ben Huberman about cleaning your WordPress blog and went back did a quick search and found it.
I followed the steps listed by Ben to help me clean out the Looking At Glass blog.  All five steps were extremely easy to do.
Why not do a little Spring-cleaning on your blog today?   It is easy and you won’t have to take a gazillion trips to the recycle container and trash dumpster to get it done!
Note: I originally did a repost of Ben’s blog on Wednesday of this week.  The repost went to the old blog site and not to the new location. 

Hot Employment Opportunity!

College for Creative Studies in Detroit Michigan is looking to fill a full-time glass faculty position.  Despite what the media portrays, Detroit is a pretty great place to be right now. The studio and hot shop had a million dollar upgrade three years ago; it’s lush. This candidate should have the following attributes…

  • Demonstrates an expertise in glass blowing and variety of glass processes.
  • Inquisitive to explore / or currently integrates technology into craft processes.
  • Is passionate about maintaining an active studio practice.
  • Have an MFA and teaching experience.
  • Is enthusiastic, a problem solver, and a creative professional.

The official job posting is can be found here. Applicants should contact HR (hr@collegeforcreativestudies.edu) to apply.

Need A Home Office? No Problem.

Today I am looking at a home office space defined by clear glass walls.

I had no problem choosing my favorite Today I Am Looking At… post this week.

This all clear glass office is a wonderfully creative space solution by Axis Mundi Design LLC

Grand Army Plaza, Axis Mundi Design
Grand Army Plaza, Axis Mundi Design

Brooklyn, NY: Axis Mundi was commissioned to design the interior or a three-bedroom (2200 sq. ft.) apartment in Richard Meier’s building at 1 Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn.  The apartment has spectacular views of the Manhattan and Brooklyn skylines.

1 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, NY
1 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn, NY

I just love this simple and modern solution.   The all glass walls give the occupant privacy but, does not cut them off from the rest of the home.

This would also be a great homework space for a child.  They can have a quiet, private space to do their homework  but, Mom and Dad can keep an eye on their activities.  Clever!

Design Team:  John Beckmann, Richard Rosenblum, and Nick Messerlian

©Axis Mundi Design LLC

 

 

Daredevil Blogging – Part 2

Today, as part of my Daredevil blogging series, I am taking a look at a free WordPress plugin, WP Screenshot.

Do you have a WordPress blog or e-commerce business website? This plugin is a handy tool for showing a screenshot of any web page.  Perhaps, you were recently mentioned in a local newspaper or industry website and you would like to share it with your readers.  Or, you need a screenshot to help you explain a concept to your readers.  Use WP Screenshot to capture that page and include it in your blog or business website.

After downloading the plugin from the WordPress website,

or from the developer’s website,

simply add the plugin to your WordPress install. Next, add the shortcode to your page or blog post. The shortcode includes the size of the screenshot and the web address. I super-duper customized my page by adding a link to the shortcode.  Click on any screenshot on this page and you will be linked to the webpage in the screenshot.  Nifty!

Unfortunately, this plugin will not work for what I am trying to accomplish on the Looking At Glass blog.

I think that it didn’t capture the whole page because of the fluid nature of the page.  Never fear, I will continue my search for just the right plugin addition.

That Aha! Moment

Trying this plugin and finding my way through the new WordPress website, plugins, and e-commerce, I had an Aha!moment.  Why not write about technology and how to use it in your glass business?  Hopefully, it will be interesting and educational and won’t bore you to death.

I must admit, that this new area of exploration has given me a new sense of purpose. Just what I needed.   Next week, I will write a blog post about glass and then one more blog post about some form of technology for your glass blog and/or your e-commerce website.

If you have any ideas, questions, or products that you think might be interesting to cover in future blog posts, just send me an email or leave me a comment and I will be happy to consider your recommendations.

Looking Back At High Point Market-Spring 2014

I had a fantastic week.   How about you?

High Point Market was crazy-busy and very enjoyable. I stopped by all of my High Point favorites and found a few new companies to keep a watch on. That is exactly as it should be – a mix of old and new.  Here are a few of my favorite finds from High Point Market Spring 2014:

Chroma-tique Vase, Viz Glass (vizglass.com)
Chroma-tique vases, Viz Glass (vizglass.com)
Table Lamp, Viz Glass (vizglass.com)
Antique Mirror at Mirror-tique (mirror-tique.com)
Side Step Glass Dancer, Global Views (globalviews.com)
Theresa A. Seidel, TAS Designs (facebook.com/TASdesigns)
Edison Table Lamp, Kenroy Home (kenroyhome.com)
Pumping Iron, Global Views (globalviews.com)
Lab Decanters, Studio A (studioa-home.com)
Pivot Object, SkLO (sklostudio.com)

By far, hands down, my most favorite find was the game tables shown by BD Collection. The jaw-dropping, all-glass, ping-pong table stopped me in my tracks (the people walking behind me were not too happy about that).  And truth be told, I probably uttered a word not meant for innocent ears.  Seeing this ping-pong table in person was simply amazing.

This was my favorite new find at #hpmkt Ping-pong Table Made of Glass Calma e Gesso, BDCollection.com
This was my favorite new find at #hpmkt Ping-pong Table Made of Glass Calma e Gesso, BDCollection.com

BD Collection also offers Calma e Gesso glass Pool Tables…

Calma e Gesso Glass Pool Table available from BD Collection
Calma e Gesso Glass Pool Table available from BD Collection

… and many Teckell glass Foosball tables.

Teckell glass game table offered by BD Collection
Teckell glass game table offered by BD Collection

As always the southern hospitality at High Point was perfect.  I am already looking forward to Fall Market!

I’ll be back tomorrow to do the next attempt at daredevil blogging! I’ve got a new option to try out and I’m feeling brave!