ISSUE 100  |  Giving Thanks

Candles for a Cause: Glassybaby Opens in SF

November 26, 2013 6:00 PM

BY Janet Hall

I used to live near the Glassybaby studio in Seattle, and, like so many other Seattleites, became entranced by the colored votives that are the glass studio’s signature. Now that I live in San Francisco, I was very glad to hear that Glassybaby has come to town.

Glassybaby was born during founder Lee Rhodes’ battle with lung cancer. When she started the business, it was with a mission of giving: since the studio’s founding, 10 percent of all sales have been donated to organizations dedicated to healing. Additionally, the sales of designated votive colors are donated to particular partner organizations, including UCSF Medical Center (for uninsured cancer patients), The San Francisco SPCA, and the Shanti Project. To date the company has given $1,567, 981 to charitable causes.

Above: Glassybaby opened its doors in SF’s Presidio Heights neighborhood in early November. Original photography by Janet Hall.

Founder Lee Rhodes began producing Glassybabies–vibrantly colored, handblown glass votives–in 1998; the vessels are now available in nearly 400 colors and can also be used as drinking glasses (they’re dishwasher safe), vases, or simply tabletop jewels. Handblown in Seattle with naturally-derived, lead-free color rods, every Glassybaby is unique. They are priced at $44 each. Weighty and vibrant, they are no ordinary votives.

Above: The minimalist space is a showcase for Glassybaby votives (the custom cabinetry is by Lotus). 

Above: Perfect for the holiday table, a centerpiece offers textures and colors that rival traditional floral centerpieces. And, better yet, they live on after the festivities. 

Above: Even the muted colors of Glassybaby votives are potent.

Above: The shop is located at 3665 Sacramento Street and is open seven days a week. Those who aren’t within reach of a Glassybaby shop in Seattle or  San Francisco can visit Glassybaby’s Online Storefront.

Headed to San Francisco? See more of our noteworthy Bay Area design haunts.