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Photos Courtesy of Elbo Glass

Leaf Glass Special 2024: Elbo Glass

Functional pieces in the shape of Raptors, Triceratops and more!

Have you ever taken a dab out of a dinosaur? 

Elbo started out in the hot shop at Tyler School of Art and Architecture in his hometown of Philadelphia in 2005, where he mostly did furnace work with soft glass. It wasn’t until after he graduated in 2009 and was apprenticing for internationally renowned artist Zach Puchowitz that he began working with boro and making pipes. Elbo eventually relocated to Colorado in 2013, where he’s now the co-owner of Everdream Studio and blowing glass alongside some of the industry’s finest including WJC, Eusheen and N8 Miers. 

He’s one of those artists where you can just look at a piece and immediately know, “That’s an Elbo.” He’s built a cult-like following of collectors with highly sculpted functional pieces in the shape of Raptors, Triceratops, “Recyclerdactyls” and more – and these dinosaur motifs that appear throughout his art are actually a love story. “The woman that I fell in love with when I first started blowing glass made me these little glass dinosaurs on the torch,” Elbo tells me. “I was so focused on building my glass career that we ended up having a falling out. After that, I wanted to let her know I was still thinking about her in the studio, so I was making replicas of this Brontosaurus that she had made me.” He brought three of these replicas to a trade show just as side pieces to fill the table, but ended up getting an enormous amount of orders off the dino designs alone. The rest is history. 

Since then, Elbo has expanded his work into many other mediums such as plushies, vinyl figurines and baseball cards – while not made with glass, these items are still inspired by his functional pipes. He explains, “I was going at them as if they were prints of my work. Like as a painter makes prints of their original canvas, I was trying to develop ‘prints’ of my glass and design them based off of actual pieces I’d made in the past.” With this approach, Elbo has been one of the few to successfully cross over from the niche glass scene into mainstream pop culture, proven by his collabs with iconic brands such as The Hundreds, Felt and Topps. 

His next venture is a flagship storefront in Denver – The Elbo Shop, which will be home to exclusive seasonal capsules of glass, clothing and his entire lineup of collectibles, as well as monthly events and heady hangouts. “I’m really trying to cultivate a place for the glass community to come to where they can hang out,” he tells me. “Just like the streetwear world did with their brick-and-mortars, that same vibe.” Opening April 6th, stop by the shop if you’re in the Mile-High City.

elboglass.us | @elboglass


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