By Deb Silverthorn
When Jordan Taub walked into the home studio of Nan Phillips, she walked into a wonderland not knowing it would be her future. Less than a year later, Phillips and her husband, Tom, have retired to Colorado, and Taub is teaching the arts of stained and fused glass.
“I was mesmerized by the environment, definitely nothing I could have imagined and the students were clearly loving what they were doing,” said Taub, whose classes are for adults, beginners to the most advanced. “Working with glass was a new medium for me but I love it — it was meant to be.”
Phillips is a past president of the Texas Jewish Arts Association (TJAA). She and Taub met last fall when Taub stopped by the Phillipses’ home to deliver her piece for TJAA’s exhibit at Love Field airport. She had a few questions and, after Tom directed her up to Nan’s studio, she had many more.
The Phillipses had already been planning their move to Denver to be closer to their children. They are already grandparents of one; another baby was on the way. However, Nan hadn’t yet decided what to do with her materials, kilns and most of all was concerned about her students.
“Meeting Jordan was the happiest ‘accident’ of my life. It was just after we’d decided to move. I was going to close my business, but I felt terrible leaving my students,” said Phillips, who had been teaching the arts of glass for more than 20 years and in her home studio since 2008. “In walked Jordan, and with her enthusiasm and talent she was my relief.”
Phillips said Taub was diligent about learning the craft.
“For seven months she came to five classes a week and we worked side-by-side. She learned about the business, the physics, the technical [aspects] and chemistry of the art. Jordan is a natural artist and teacher, and I know my students — her students — are in great hands,” said Phillips. While settling in the couple’s new city and home, she remains on the TJAA board.
Taub decided the time was right to reinvent her role as a teacher. She’d spent more than 13 years teaching part-time at J’s Art Studio, and more than a decade in Richardson schools at RISD Academy and Richardson West Art & Technology Magnet. She decided to leave the classroom to handle some family challenges and to be supportive to her father, who was in failing health. In taking over Phillips’ classes, and building her own, she’s found great joy.
In her Dallas home studio, Taub offers numerous classes each week. With a maximum of four students at any one time, she can offer each her attention and space to create.
“I hadn’t been creative in a long time, but I started taking Nan’s classes and they were fantastic. I really missed it when we had to break because of the pandemic but I’m so glad to be back. Jordan is an excellent teacher, very patient and so much fun to be around,” said Alyson Ray. She had studied with Phillips for three years, and a mezuzah is among her most recent creations.
While many of Phillips’ former students continued with Taub, she’s had a number of new students sign on including longtime friend Julieta Grinffiel and her mother, Ariela Daitch-Grinffiel.
“I was never ‘artsy’ but I had bought her coloring book and it was a great way to destress. Her classes are my first foray into the studio but she’s a great teacher,” said Julieta Grinffiel, a corporate immigration attorney whose time in the studio allows her a creative outlet. She has been friends with Taub since the two were in the same BBYO chapter. “My first project was a stained-glass piece of a template Jordan created from a photo of my cat who passed away, and then I did a stained-glass succulent. The classes are a great getaway.”
The daughter of Sharon and the late Greg, Taub is the sister of Lauren (Ryan) Rosemore and the aunt of Cecily and Max. A Dallas native and lifelong Temple Emanu-El member, she is a former BBYO Zesmer member and graduate of Richardson Arts Magnet. She earned a bachelor’s degree at the University of North Texas.
As a second grade student of Ginger Lemons at Brentfield Elementary, Taub fell in love with art; before she was a teen, she knew her path.
“Ms. Lemons’ art classes were why I went to school. I hope I can give even a bit of that inspiration to my students,” said Taub, who has always known the impact a teacher can make.
For Lemons, hearing that one of “her kids” took what she shared and has made a life of art, and is sharing it with others, is priceless.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled, or proud, to know of Jordan’s path. Because I know how much she enjoyed art, I have no doubt she’s a wonderful teacher,” said Lemons, who retired after more than 30 years in education.
Iridescent and glistening. Functional and Fun. Taub’s work, and that created by her students, shines.
In addition to teaching her own classes, and some still at J’s Art Studio, Taub has published a coloring book for all ages: “Color Your Own Hamsa, A Calming Coloring Book.” On her Etsy store, she now sells her coloring book, stickers, pins, magnets and greeting cards as well as mixed media artwork, paintings, prints, glass art and custom commissions.
“When I first met Nan I couldn’t imagine what was before me but I fell in love with the arts of glass immediately,” said Taub. The first piece she made, a menorah, will be on display, from Nov. 9 to Dec. 31 as part of the Artistry of Faith and Culture exhibit at the Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Garden, and Taub will be part of the vendor community there on Nov. 19 and 20.
“It doesn’t take years of experience to create — just a heart for it,” said Taub.
For more information, to register for Taub’s classes or to purchase her own works, visit