Sea glass is a beautiful material that can be found all over the earth. Since people first started making glass in the time before 2000 BC in Mesopotamia, there has been sea glass. The majority of naturally formed sea glass that is on the market today was formed in the 19th and 20th Century. It is used to make many types of sea glass jewelry including sea glass charms, sea glass pendants and sea glass rings (including wedding rings).
What is Sea Glass?
Sea glass is formed two ways. Naturally formed sea glass comes from broken glass that found its way to the ocean or other rough body of water, where is tossed about the sea to smooth off the rough edges. This process can take years. The time frame for the creation of sea glass can last between five and 5 and 50 years. The glass itself can come from broken bottles, shipwrecks, tableware, etc. The number of sources of the glass is nearly endless.
Sea glass can also be manufactured by people. When it is man made, it is also called “beach glass.” There are a lot of ways this looks like sea glass that is naturally made, there are also a number of differences. To make this kind of sea glass, glass pieces are dipped in an acid bath or dropped into a rock tumbler to create a similar effect to what happens to the glass in the sea. While many people cannot tell the difference between the two types of sea glass, people, who consider themselves to be connoisseurs of the material, can. They do not consider the man made sea glass to be sea glass at all.
The latter form of sea glass is much cheaper and is what most types of sea glass charms and other sea glass jewelry are made from.
Sea glass is perfect for jewelry. It comes in a variety of colors. The various soft green sea glass hues are most often from bottles. The bottles were used or fruit, ink and baking soda. At least one in every 50 to 100 pieces of beach glass that is found, is some shade of green making this of of the most common of the sea glass colors.
People also find purple, citron, white glass that is totally opaque (this comes from milk glass) and cobalt blue. When older bottles of Milk of Magnesia, poison, various pieces of art, containers that are used for Vicks VapoRub and Bromo-Seltzer create sea glass that is cornflower blue. Aqua sea glass comes from 19th Century glass and Ball Mason Jars. These colors are very uncommon. These are found in one in every 200 to one thousand pieces that people discover. Cobalt blue sea glass is often referred to as the “sapphires” of the sea glass world. These make for great sea glass necklaces and sea glass charms.
The least common color for sea glass is orange. This is only found once in every 10,000 pieces of sea glass that is discovered on a beach. Red sea glass is not as rare as the orange sea glass. It often comes from perfume bottles, tail lights from cars and trucks and some old beer bottles. When this color of sea glass is found, people call these pieces the “rubies” of the sea glass world.
Many people, across the world, enjoy the hobby of collecting sea glass. For sea glass collectors in North America, people can join the North American Sea Glass Association. They host various sea glass festivals around the country, produce newsletters and host an annual conference for sea glass hobbyists. People who hunt for and collect sea glass do a lot of things with it. They make stained glass, mosaics and fill jars with the pieces.
Artisans take the sea glass and fashion it into beautiful sea glass jewelry pieces. The sea glass that comes straight from the ocean and many pieces of sea glass that were artificially made by people can look just like fine gemstones That is one of the reasons that sea glass charms, necklaces and wedding jewelry is so popular in some areas.
If you are looking for fun, festive and creative jewelry, you cannot beat sea glass jewelry.