Building with Glass Blocks


54 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Index
ISBN 0-385-25114-9
DDC 728'





Reviewed by James A. Love

J.A. Love is an associate professor of environmental design at the
University of Calgary.


This soft cover book was financially supported by the glass block industry. It was written for the do-it-yourself home improvement audience. It opens by enumerating the merits of glass block and suggesting applications. Here the bias of the sponsor is evident, as glass block is reported to “have the insulating value of a 12”-thick concrete wall.” The author neglects to mention that a 12”-thick concrete wall has the insulating value of a window. It is the photographs of completed projects that make the most appealing case for using glass block.

Methods of building with glass block are described comprehensively and the necessary tools are described with care. The energetic amateur renovator could proceed with confidence after a careful review of this material. The discussion would be clearer if more illustrations had been used. Accounts, accompanied by photographs, of three step-by-step projects clarify some of the points made in the general discussion. These projects are adding a glass block finish to a bar, erecting a small wall, and replacing a bathroom window with glass block. Building with Glass Blocks compares favourably with other do-it-yourself booklets in terms of illustrations and discussion.



Pennycook, Bob, “Building with Glass Blocks,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 17, 2024,