Orbix Hot Glass
Cal Breed & Christy Breed
Tell us about your business.Since 2002, Orbix Hot Glass has distinguished itself by its refined handmade blown glass. For owners Cal and Christy Breed, Orbix emerged as an idea in the late 1990's as Cal studied at schools around the country, gleaning as much knowledge and technique from some of the best in the world. Deciding where to plant a glass studio was not difficult; Alabama was home, with all its charm and subtle graces. People always ask how we got the name. In one sense it’s about our personal path and its intersection with many others. From another, it’s about the process of blowing glass and its constant requirement to never stop turning. Today, Cal blows each piece with great attention to form, balance and color. The collection is sold throughout select retail and online stores. Orbix also has its own showroom at the studio where people can also watch Cal at work. Also, with the launch of orbixhotglass.com, Orbix is making handmade available with the convenience of online ordering.
What makes your business stand out?Location. We chose to locate Orbix in a rural, but unique section of our home state, Alabama. One glass blower lived in Alabama at the time, there was no great glass community. However, we chose Lookout Mountain because we met rock climbing in its vast canyons and Cal loved kayaking its turbulent waters. Though it provided a huge playground, it also provided a picturesque quiet - something necessary for creating, running a business and raising a family. Orbix Hot Glass Studio and Gallery resides on 26 acres near the border of Little River Canyon Nationl Preserve. This landscape echoes throughout the pieces in a way we never anticipated when we first opened.
What's the best business advice you've received?“Write the book that you want to read.” This advice sets the bar for what Orbix creates each day in our product and business practices. Everyone is writing their own book in the life they lead. Many years down the road, we want to look back and see a collection of work that reflects distinction, high level of craftsmanship, and a good sensitivity to form, color and texture. Also, we want others to remember the work, and the experience with us as a positive one. This means taking time to learn about our customers and educating them on the craft of glass and ideas that surround how and why we make our pieces. The joy of our story thus far has been defined by the relationship with our material of glass, and with the relationships built with others whether they are customers, employees, vendors, or media. It is a story we continue to write as we learn more of our material and expand our scope of lovers of handmade.
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