In the heart of Black Diamond sits an amazing glass blowing studio called Firebrand Glass. Julia Reimer and Tyler Rock are both award winning artists that studied at the Alberta College of Arts and Design and later went on to create their studio together as a partnership. Firebrand Glass is known for creating exceptional custom glass pieces that you can’t stop staring at.
Before the pandemic Firebrand offered comprehensive workshops, team building events, and was open to the public. Restrictions created a challenge for the studio followed by the large increase in supply costs. During the pandemic Community Futures Highwood offered the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund that was directed towards businesses that were impacted by ongoing restrictions and economic changes. “We knew that if it came to the worst-case scenario, it was there, and we would be able to use it.” Said Julia. “It’s a sigh of relief when the rug gets pulled out from under you and you’re grappling with how you’re going to make it with lost income. We were able to plan more and figure things out and that was helpful. As a small business you’re always wondering how you’re going to deal with those larger impacts, and you don’t always have access to financing.”
Firebrand also felt the pressure to pivot as the digital world evolved. “We knew we needed more of a digital presence. The world has changed.” Julia says that the vision and guidance received from the Digital Service Squad was impactful for the future of their studio. “I knew that the advice and work you were doing was unbiased. It was nice to have people that I could trust, working with me.”
“We’ve had a positive shift coming out of the pandemic. We are working more with people, organizations, and individuals, and it’s something that we really enjoy doing,” Says Julia, “We’re connecting with clients and it’s fantastic. Having the website has put us in a very good position to set us up for the future and promote these aspects of our business.”