Sea Glass Jewelry: The Man Made Jewels Of The Seas

Sea Glass Jewelry is made of those tiny colorful bits of glass that wash up on beaches all over the world. Not just debris, they have been reshaped by the waves over years, decades and sometimes centuries. Collectors hoard their pieces and keep secret where they found their treasures like pirates once did. One woman has collected a million pieces of sea or beach glass since she was a child. However, anyone can get started: it just takes a sharp eye and a lot of patience. The best places for gathering up sea glass are along the coastlines of New England, Nova Scotia, California, Mexico, southern Spain, Italy, and even Hawaii. It can be washed up along the Chesapeake Bay and the Great Lakes regions where people call it beach glass.

It can be found in every color of the rainbow from clear to pink, gray, green of all shades, amber and even red. You can tell where and when the piece was made by knowing which colors were used by glass manufacturers during certain periods of history. Brown and amber, clear and green were the numerous colors when pop containers were glass, not plastic containers during the Sixties and the Seventies.

If you find a piece that is a soft deep blue or a pale blue, then it is probably made during the nineteenth and the early years of the twentieth centuries because prescription bottles were this color as well as ink bottles and jam jars. The most prized colors are red, orange and purple that are found along the shorelines of Great Britain and can date back to the eighteenth century. These happen to show up every 200 to 1000 pieces of sea glass.

Making sea glass jewelry is relatively easy. Get round jewelry wire and wrap it around the piece. You should use a thin 18 to 22 gauge wire because this is the best thickness for necklaces. You can also drill through the piece and thread the wire through it.

A drill with a diamond bit is ideal for work on this small scale. Get a medium sized bowl with a piece of wood in it, and place the glass on the wood and drill with water covering it. There is a risk of shock because of the water. Remember the drill should have variable speeds and be able to drill at 25,000 RPM.

Wear safety eye wear to protect you from bits of flying pieces if the glass fractures while drilling. To stop the glass from shattering, drill one side, flip it over and then drill the other side. Thread the pendant with wire, loop the wire as a fastener and wear it with pride.

Go through the websites that sell sea glass necklaces, bracelets, pendants and earrings and learn about the wide array available. All jewelry designers and sellers should be able to educate their customers about the origins of their pieces. The variations of colors within a particular object, the rarity and especially the dullness of the glass are signs of the real thing. All collectors and sellers should conform to their code of ethics about passing off fakes as the genuine article. The fakes are usually ordinary shards of glass that have been tumbled in machines but there is one thing that cannot be faked. The glass should be dull after decades in the ocean and not be transparent at all.

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