Wine Glass Painting, Wine Drinking, and running the Wine 10K!

Believe it or not, the whole reason I started Do It Yourself Crafts – way back in 1999 – was because I wanted to paint wine glasses. I’ll tell this whole story another time, but we’re excited to announce that wine glass painting is BACK at DIYC!

And I’m really excited to say that one of the first people to paint wine glasses was Joey Longoria, and he didn’t just paint any ol’ wine glasses – but the glasses that the winners of the Wine 10K will sip from. The Wine 10K is a road race that goes through the heart of Homewood. It’s going to be held March 11, and there is still time to sign up! You can find more information at

Glass painting is super easy, but slightly different from painting on pottery or on canvas. First, you can see through the glass (obvious, I know, but sometimes you have to say the obvious), so you have to think about what’s going on the other side. Also, it’s SLICK! There isn’t a whole lot of *grip* to glass, so sometimes it takes a minute to get used to it.

We have a wide variety of colors, and glasses are $16 each. These go home with you the day you make them, and you finish them in the oven at home. (Super easy – put the glass in a cold oven. Set the temperature to 300 degrees and your timer to 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, turn off the oven and let it cool down to room temperature before taking out.)

While Joey was painting, I bombarded him with questions – because I really like getting a chance to find out about my customers and what they love. He’s been coming in for years with his daughter, so we’ve talked about all sorts of things.

DIYC: How did the Wine 10K come into being?

Joey: The National Center for Sports Safety was looking for a way to market and promote our brand and tell people about what we do. In the process, we also wanted to do something sports related since that’s our industry and what we do. We knew we wanted to do a race, but like everything we do, we wanted it to be unique, fun, and well executed. Next, we know runners LOVE mimosas and through an already existing partnership with International Wines, the name Wine 10K was born. We are the only net downhill certified course in Birmingham

What changes are you expecting this year from the inaugural run last year?

More runners! Currently, we are well over last year’s totals in every aspect and will be close to doubling last year’s race entries. Secondly, having Rio Olympic medalist Emma Coburn coming in to run will be something no other race in this area has ever done before. We have also added finisher medals this year. Some seriously cool bling. The finisher medal is a custom designed stainless steel functional wine stopper medal. Last, we have added prize money for the winners this year which has attracted an incredibly fast field for the race. One thing we are not changing is the GREAT post-race party that everyone enjoyed last year serving up mimosas, wine, Trim Tab beer, Revelator Coffee, and the super popular grilled cheese station from Lululemon and the breakfast burrito tent by Homewood Gourmet!
What is your running background?

We need another blog for this. Kidding. Sort of. I started running with my mom in Hobbs, New Mexico when I was 6 years old and started running competitively when we moved to Houston, Texas when I was 8 years old through junior Olympics when I was 8 and competed through high school. We traveled all over the country competing at state meets and national meets. Through high school, my events were the 110 hurdles, 300/400 meter hurdles, javelin, and multi-event discipline and at one point held age-group Texas state records in all four. I didn’t start running beyond a 10k until 2012. The 2012 Magic City half marathon was my first half and since then I have completed 12. I have also completed 5 marathons, most recently, the Houston marathon back in January. Depending on what I’m training for, I run anywhere from 35-65 miles per week

Tell me about the foundation.

The National Center for Sports Safety was founded in 2001 by Dr. Larry Lemak of Lemak Health. His vision and our mission are quite simple: To educate the youth sports community, making the field of play safer for our youth athletes. Primarily, we do this though our coaches education class called PREPARE, which is an all-sports comprehensive education for all coaches, parents and care-givers that was developed by a delegation of athletic professionals spearheaded by Dr. Lemak in 2003, here in Birmingham. The content is reviewed and updated every two years and is currently reaches 48 states and is a mandatory certification among high school coaches in Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi. You can learn for about the history and what you can do to make sure your child is safer on the playing field by visiting

I know that you are an artist, and you’ve had amazing opportunities with your art. Tell me about what you have going on next.

That’s a great question! I started collaborating with local photographer Ginnard Archibald a few years ago and that partnership has been amazing. We do photography and paint mixed media that has been well received both locally and nationally. In the meantime, I have been contacted by the arts council in Szekesfehervar, Hungary for a solo exhibit toward the end of summer, 2017. If that happens, I’ll be very busy for a few months!

Like so many businesses in Homewood, we’re super proud of this event! If you are a runner, this course is so fun – and is as flat as something in Birmingham can be. If you are running, we’ll be cheering you on, and toasting you afterwards!

Wine Glass Painting, Wine Drinking, and running the Wine 10K!

Glass Fusing – Now Easier Than Ever!

Announcing the new way to select glass! When you come in, we have all of our glass varieties ready for you to take to any table. You’ll work with nippers to get exactly what you need for your project. 

You can still score and cut glass, but we’re going to make it easier to get started and create. It won’t take any longer to start you on a glass project than it does to paint pottery!

We still have a selection of noodles, stringers and frit (glass glitter), and I’m still buying all the pretty colors of glass we all love. How can I not?

This *is* glass, and glass can cut. We have bandaids. Kids aged 6-10 need “dedicated adult involvement” to work with cutting glass – it’s mainly a hand-strength issue for using the tile nippers. Kids older – and adults, obviously, can do all sorts of fun stuff. We don’t recommend glass for friends under age 6, but I defer to parents for this.

The first firing of glass is the fusing firing, and leaves the glass flat. We can shape it into bowls or plates with a second firing called a slump firing.

If you are interested in WHY we made these changes, it’s because in the past, if you wanted to do glass you’d be presented with a LOT of choices. Glass in bins that were sorted by color, and by size. Plus stringers, noodles and frit. It could be overwhelming, and I think many customers didn’t pick glass for this reason. I also think my staff would get overwhelmed with showing you HOW glass worked.

So one day three weeks ago, I was sitting at a red light and had this idea. You know how those ideas are – you have to really consider if it will work, and this one seems to be.

Now, all the glass is together ready for you choose what you need.

We’ve had it set up for three weeks, and we’re seeing more and more customers try glass fusing, and it is so much easier on everyone.

Some more back-story on glass:
It’s been around a LONG time, but only about 12 years ago did people start to use kilns traditionally used for ceramics to fire glass. Glass kilns are usually heated from the lid, while ceramic kilns are heated from the side, and it wasn’t until someone started playing around did they realize you could use side-elements to fuse glass.

DIYC brought in glass about 11 years ago. We started out offering it for classes, and eventually it became a part of our walk-in options for the store.

This past year, we had a scare: in the spring, the company who makes all the glass we use announced they were going out of business. Oh no! What were we going to do? It was a summer of not knowing, and we were so happy when it was announced that another company would continue to manufacture the glass we use.

(One of the things about glass, is that you can’t use just any old glass. As glass heats, it expands and contracts, and you have to make sure it is expanding and contracting at a regulated rate. This is called the Coefficient of Expansion, or COE. And you can only use ONE COE at a time. Imagine if you mixed Coke and Pepsi, and the result was an explosion. That’s what happens with different COEs, which is why we couldn’t just go by any glass we wanted.)

So, this is where we are: glass is staying, and we’ve made it easier than ever. 

Glass Fusing – Now Easier Than Ever!