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What Is Sea Glass -
How Collecting It Can Turn Into An Addiction 

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This section discusses different aspects of sea glass. Each topic is discussed in more detail as the story of this uniquely formed treasure is totally fascinating. The more you research the more absorbed you become.

Begin here with a basic fact that ...

Glass, when it is physically and chemically weathered by the ocean and deposited on many beaches around the world, is commonly referred to as Sea Glass.

The origins of genuine sea glass pieces come from broken bottles, broken tableware, even decor such as chandeliers, windows and more modern sea glass pieces can come from windshields from cars.

Really old pieces originate from shipwrecks along the coastline, broken up and the debris deposited on the shoreline. This can take years to find its way to the beach.

The glass fragments are rounded by the action of the water. As the water weathers the shape, so do the chemicals in the sea water itself resulting in the surface taking on an etched or frosted appearance.

Sea Glass takes 20 - 40 years to acquire its frosted appearance and shape. There are pieces, however, that have been found to be over 100 years old!

Sea Glass begins as a normal shard of broken glass. This gets tossed and tumbled by the action of the waves and the edges and surface get grounded by sand, rocks and pebbles. The sharp edges eventually become smoothed down.

What Is Sea Glass? - The Basic Facts and more
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What is sea glass, this piece exactly, collected on the Frankston foreshore?  Could possibly have come from a jam dish or a sugar jar? There are no markings on it to help identify where it came from, so the shape of it possibly holds the key to its origin.

Researching found that it could possibly be 'Depression Glass'  from the early 1900's

sea glass glassware knobSea Glass glassware knob found on the Frankston foreshore

As the knowledge of making glass grew, so did the use of it to make different objects.. As the quality of the finished product improved, bottles became thinner and glass craftsmanship became a well sought after skill. 

Glass producers would leave marks on their products identifying its origin, however there are other features such as ...

  • Color
  • Shape. Shipment of liquor bottles often required the shape to be square so that more could be stored.
  • Substance being carried. Poisons were usually stored in blue bottles
sea glass identificationWhat is Sea Glass- Marks on the base of sea glass help to identify its origin

In 2014 I had the pleasure of traveling to Venice, Italy. You can't 'do' Venice without a trip out to the island of Murano! There I witnessed what glassblowing was really all about. These craftspeople are so skilled and their creations are amazing. 
It may not be romantic sea glass but it truly is beautiful, The little streets of Venice are filled with an incredible array of the finished art works.

Perhaps, if I can return there one day I may be able to find some sea glass treasures on a beach near Venice. Dreaming ...

Murano glass from VeniceMurano Glass from Venice in Italy

Enjoy your sea glass adventures. The hours spent combing the foreshore are hours well spent. Collections of your treasures will bring back memories of those hours, relive them often and don't just store your treasures away in a glass jar, take them out now and again and play with them.

Maybe there is a mark you hadn't noticed before? Spend time exploring what is sea glass, specifically this piece, the history of the piece, the color, possibly finding out how it landed on this particular spot on the beach. You never know, your hobby might just turn into an addiction but it's a great one at that!

Do You Have A Sea Glass Question That needs To Be Answered?

Ask it here!

How is sea glass formed?
This page goes into more depth as to what forces are needed to produce the treasures that we now find on some of the world's beaches.

Start your journey here

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