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Nature Inspires Glass Art for the Garden

February 06, 2013

Updated 3/17/2017: Glass Gardens NW was sold to new owners in 2016. We have received a number of complaints following this sale, so we are no longer linking out to their website.

Today we are thrilled to announce a guest post from our friend Barbara Sanderson of Glass Gardens Northwest. She’ll be discussing her inspiration and giving us a first sneak-peek at two new designs that will be unveiled for the first time ever at the 2013 Northwest Flower & Garden Show!


My Source Inspiration

Double Datura Design: Available 1st at 2013 Northwest Flower & Garden Show

by Barbara Sanderson

The source of inspiration for my artwork is found in nature. Walking down a road in the early morning and seeing the dewdrops clinging to the pine needles with the sunlight reflecting off the water. In the woods in the fall, coming across a family of mushrooms sprouting from the decaying leaves on the forest floor. Watching the early growth of bulbs breaking the surface of the soil with frost on the ground.  Spying  hummingbirds collecting nectar from a large honeysuckle bush. These are images that I treasure and which lead me to create glass and metal art that complements nature.

What follows here are pictures of flora-inspired art. (All images courtesy Barbara Sanderson & Glass Gardens Northwest.)

Tendril Glass Art Design: Available for the 1st time at the 2013 Northwest Flower & Garden Show

Tendrils: These are new designs and they will be making their debut at the 2013 NW Flower & Garden Show!

Double Datura or Devil’s Trumpet flower: This is another new item to debut at the NW Flower & Garden show this year

Amanita Mushrooms

The first time I saw these mushrooms was while hiking along the Skagit River. They were hiding under dense forest undergrowth but they had established huge colonies and the bright red amongst all the green of the forest floor was stunning! I make mine with a fluted top instead of a round dome because I think it adds a little punch to the shape.

Fiddlehead Ferns

Spring is one of my most favorite seasons. One of the sure signs of spring are the emerging tops of Fiddlehead Ferns. But of course being a color fanatic I had to make mine in a myriad of bright colors and I have named them Fiddlesticks

Brugmansia inspired Glass Gardens Northwest Art


What can I say? It’s gorgeous and it’s a Brugmansia – what’s not to love?


I have wonderful childhood memories of cattails growing along the shores of Lake Huron where my family would go for summer vacation. We would soak the dried cattails in fuel and light them on fire for torches at night.


Poppies for me are always a symbol of Remembrance Day in Canada where I grew up. Remembrance Day (November 11th each year) commemorates civilians and military personnel who lost their lives in armed conflicts. In Canada most people wear artificial poppy pins on their coats and clothes in the weeks prior to November 11th.

When creating sculptures for the garden there’s a certain point in time where the glass achieves a synchronicity of shape and fluidity and that’s when I know the piece is complete. Glass is a very challenging medium where the difference between perfection and glass shards can be the result of a split second decision. It is this difficult aspect of glass that intrigues and captures my attention.

Learn more about Barbara here.

Looking to buy or want to see more art from Barbara? Visit Glass Gardens Northwest online store here.



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