A Turkey of a Glass Sculpture

The weather is nicer here and you know what that means: glass sculptures. For the last two years you’ve seen me make a variety of sculptures, starting with this red one (which is still one of my favorites, the red is so pretty) and continuing with a variety of colors and sizes, finally adding solar lights and then moving to a new type of sculpture: glass mushrooms.

Just when I thought I had found my limit of things to do with glass, I started seeing something new on the flea market circuit: glass sculpture animals. I’ve seen a couple that are cute, but mostly I’ve seen people just being creative with glass. Their sculpture might not look like an animal but the very fact that they attempted something different really inspired me. Of course, I had to try it myself.

It all depends on the type of glass you have laying around. I find pieces super cheap (and I mean super cheap) because if it’s not then to me it isn’t worth doing. The fun of these projects is that they are cheap and use found materials. I recently got two huge boxes of glass pieces at an estate sale for $1. Total. The woman just wanted it all out of the house. Her trash was my treasure. In that pile of glass was a couple roundish green vases and a clear cup. I had a few more pieces that used to be part of those big trays people used in the 60s, and a vase and plate.

I took one look at this pile and thought: glass turkey. You can see it, right? The big tail, the wings…




Okay, admittedly, you need to use your imagination with this sculpture, because while I think it looks like a turkey, others might think it looks like either a cheesy, kitschy sculpture or a bunch of junk glued together. But that’s art, folks! It’s subjective!

I took some green glass beads from the Dollar Store, and folks, if you’re not buying these beads at the Dollar Store you need to do it! It’s the cheapest place to find them, and especially for a fun project like this, they work perfectly.




I glued some green beads on the “wings.”




And also the tail.




Then, I glued the tail to the body.




I glued the head together.




And the body. At this point, it sort of looks like an alien, doesn’t it? Those round things are the feet, and will keep the head up. I had to get a little more creative with how to keep the sculpture upright while drying. (And in case you’re wondering, I know turkeys aren’t really green.)




Then, I added the head to the body.




And viola! The turkey is done!




Here’s a tip, the Dollar Store is also a great place to get solar lights. Especially if you’re buying lots of them and gluing them to glass turkeys. But even better? You can glue glass beads on these cheapie solar lights and when they light up at night the beads look so pretty.




For now, I put the turkey on an old stump in our yard. We’re planning to cover the stump later on, and I may move it somewhere else then.




At night, this little turkey lights up.

Dorky? Yes, definitely. And yet… I know I will have to make a few more!

This project is featured in my book, Glass Sculptures: How to Make Beautiful Sculptures for the Garden Using Vases, Bowls, and Other Glass Pieces.


  1. says

    Love this idea, but don’t know if I could find all those pieces to make it just so. I am having fun with the glass totems for the garden, and just discovered the glass mushrooms idea. I frosted the mushrooms on the inside so they looked more subdued instead of sparkly. My totems are on the blog, but haven’t gotten to pics of the mushrooms yet. Have you tried dish flowers??? Great fun.

  2. Nancy says

    You are an inspiration! I love what you do! I have been attempting to make garden glass sculptures and having trouble with glue…then I found your site. Now I am on the search for the glue you recommend. What about silicone for fish tanks and mirrors? I started with Gorilla glue, but it is amber colored and doesn’t hold. Oh well, I’m still having fun!

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