Photograph: Dane Tashima
Sparks flew the moment Peter and Marilyn Frank met.
"On our first date, we both brought the same five obscure electronica CDs with us," Peter says. "We have always had common interests that allowed us to make things together."
They married in 2001 and a year later launched F2, a glass design company that produces sleek, sculptural bowls, vases, and lighting at Making Glass, a community-access studio in Highland Park. For Marilyn, a graphic designer, and Peter, a sculptor and glassblower, the collaboration was a natural fit. "With our diverse backgrounds, the business felt pretty right to us," Peter says.
From an idea’s conception to its in-studio execution, the enterprise is a team effort. Marilyn and Peter, both 34, draw on a mutual interest in biology and astronomy to design and craft their one-of-a-kind pieces, many of which subtly incorporate natural forms and colors.
"I want to create a vase that is special enough that there is no need to question, ‘Should I put flowers in this?’" Peter says. "It should be able to stand on its own."
"Our work stresses design first," Marilyn says. "We are just designers who happen to work with glass."
The couple recently opened their own showroom, the F2 Lab (840 W. Washington St., 312-371-1391; http://www.f2.cc/), which is open to the public. F2’s creations, which sell for $200 to $2,000, are also available at Abode (1904 W. North Ave., 773-227-6400), I.D. (3341 N. Clark St., 773-755-4343), and Tucker Gallery (1939 Central St., Evanston, 847-570-9825).