Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 1, Issue 8, Tuesday July 29, 2003





































GLASS is the material of the future. Research and development into glass is revealing many possibilities. It is not just a brittle, fragile substance that we associate with windows. In many cases it is replacing wood, metal and stone as a building material. The beauty of glass is its most obvious quality: transparency. As cities grow more crowded and the homes smaller, the illusion of space becomes more and more important.

Glass is a very mysterious material. It is like a frozen liquid that transmits and reflects light. Glass is a beautiful and diverse medium. The interaction of glass and light is very exciting. Through glass, life becomes more luminous. Architectural glass has emerged as a powerful material that is able to transform our environments. It can create barriers without diminishing the sense of space, create privacy without blocking light. Architectural glass can be used in doors, windows, kitchen cabinets, railings and ceiling panels. In the home the possibilities are endless.
Glass is available in a variety of forms, from reflective glass sheets to glass bricks in various colours. Glass can be made safe without compromising its aesthetic qualities. Toughened or tempered glass is glass that breaks into harmless blunt fragments. Laminated glass is created using a plastic layer sandwiched between two glass sheets.

There is a very wide range of techniques that can be used on glass. These techniques range from deep 3D carving to shaded surface etching, tinting and coloring. Custom designed beveled, etched, carved and sand blasted glass can be produced in a variety of textures and colors. Sandblasting involves abrading the surface of the glass creating shading and depth. 'Frosting' describes the light-diffusing matte white surface produced by a simple, even abrasion of the glass.

Traditionally, stained glass has been reserved as a part of décor used sparingly in homes. However, a Stained Glass Overlay can be implemented upon existing glass or acrylic surfaces, making stained glass an easy and accessible part of design. Stained Glass Overlay can contribute to and cultivate any atmosphere desired, and greater design intricacies can be achieved than with traditional cut glass.

These techniques are now available in Bangladesh. Reflections, an Architectural Glass Design and decorative Art Glass company uses all of the above techniques to create beautiful pieces of glass that can be used in residential and commercial buildings.

For further details/information on this article or previous articles, contact Architect Rumana Malik email: afmalik@bangla.net. Sabrina Islam email: sislam@bol-online.com for Reflections


FOR the past four years, Reflections has been producing decorative and functional glass fittings for the homes and businesses of Dhaka. The founder, Sabrina Islam, began her glass-working hobby with a course abroad, and on returning to Dhaka, she began using what she had learned to decorate her home. She soon opened a store to offer her work to the public, and though she worked on her own in the beginning, over the years she has trained ten others to help her. She now has a showroom on the top floor of Gulshan's Midas Mini-mart.
No stranger to business, Islam was involved with the founding of Karika Handicrafts in her university days. She is the General Manager of Tulip Garments, she ran Rainbow Children's Boutique, and she is a Vice President of the Women Entrepreneurs Association.

The glasswork available from Reflections includes stained-glass and stained-glass overlays, as well as pieces produced by etching, sandblasting, beveling, airbrushing, colouring, V-grooving and moulding. While the showroom is a place to see examples of the various kinds of work done, the distinctive thing about Reflections is that much of its work is customized - pieces are made on request, instead of being made and stock-piled. This means clients can specify their own particular requirements to their hearts' content, and Islam will try to accommodate them - whether decorating a bathroom mirror to match the surrounding tiles, or putting a particular design on a glass mug to be given as a customized gift. One important restriction however, is the availability of glass - Reflections does not manufacture glass, and so the client must be content with the types of glass available in the local market.

From it's single workshop, Reflections has provided glasswork for a string of private homes, and can even boast of recent work for the extension of Sheraton Hotel. With further projects in the works and hopes for an exhibition in the future, Islam says that she can only see the business growing, as more and more people seek out the unique combinations of aesthetic and functional qualities offered by glass. And as Islam experiments with processes and products, we hope the variety of glasswork in Dhaka will continue to increase.

In addition to the showroom on the top floor of Midas Mini-mart in Gulshan-1, the offices of Relfections are at Jahangir Tower (4th Floor), 10 Karwan Bazar, Dhaka. Ph: 8118151, 9116496

By Salman Ali




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