A short Introduction to Sea Glass and where to find it

If you follow this blog but also my social media you might have seen that my husband and I have discovered sea glass this year.

We used to collect it just because it is pretty. My husbands ex-partner is an artist and she asked us if we sell it. We looked at each other and said no and left it at that but got curious. Turns out many jewellery makers like to make pendants out of it. And many artists like to use it for mosaics for example. You know my/our precarious financial situation and so the best husband in the world decided to use his eBay shop to sell some of it. And he also got creative and created a couple of simple but beautiful sea glass pendants. We gave one to my step mum for mothers day and she really liked it. She was wondering what beautiful stone that was so I had to explain to her that it is not a stone.

But what is sea glass?

Well, sea glass in a way is what it says: it is glass that you find at the beach and it comes from the sea. There are tons of more or less ancient shipwrecks in the sea around our coasts. Many of those ships carried bottles, jars and glasses which of course broke when the ship went down.

We are not always aware of it but the sea has strong currents underwater and those currents move what is on the ground. If fossils or artefacts are close enough to the coast the tides will bring them to the beach. So if you are observant enough you will find a lot of interesting stuff on the beach.

Where to find sea glass?

You can find sea glass at any beach. However, there are beaches where you find a lot and there are beaches where you really have to look for it. At our usual beach, we can find at least one or two pieces a day. Sometimes we find a lot more. However, there are beaches full of sea glass and here are a couple of destinations:

Seaham, UK

Letโ€™s stay in the UK for now: Seaglass does not only occur when ships sink. In Seaham for example used to be a Victorian Glass factory which at the end of the day discarded all unused glass into the sea. It is THE destination in the UK if you are interested in sea glass. But if you are a movie fan you might like Seaham too: According to โ€œBeach Lustโ€ the town provided locations for Billy Elliot and Alien 3. While we usually find white, green and sometimes brown or dark blue sea glass there are more colours to be found at Seaham.

Fort Bragg California

photo credit: Buzzfarmers via Flickr. Description for visually impaired readers: close up of green, brown and white sea glass in between pebbles and sand. Background a little bit of dark blue sea to the right and a grey rock to the left. Top of picture is light blue sky.

There are other places which offer even more sea glass. If you visit McKerricher State Park in California close to Fort Bragg and make it to its secluded beach you can walk on sea glass. Yes, you can walk on the stuff. And guess what? The beach is called Glass Beach :-).

According to Wikipedia Fort Braggs, residents used three beaches as dump sites for their trash from 1906 until 1967. They did not only dump glass but also appliances and even cars. In 1967 the sites were closed and a cleaned up. But you can imagine that dumped glass from nearly 60 years gives a lot of sea glass! However, you are not allowed to collect it as it is part of the state park.

Ussuri Bay, Russia

The Soviet Union apparently used the same practice than the United States when it came to their waste. They just dumped it at the beach. For Ussuri Bay close to Vladivostok that is a plus now. Today its beach is covered in sea glass of many colours and has become a tourist attraction.

Goa Beaches, India

According to Maya Matthew from A Million Little Stitches, the beaches in Goa India, are full of sea glass too. The love for a beer at the beach and the custom to leave the bottle just there created and creates a colourful offering.

Have you ever found sea glass?

You can see there are many ways how sea glass is created. As far as I know the older the sea glass the thicker it is but I havenโ€™t researched fully why that is the case. That is the topic for another post. So here you have it: a short introduction to sea glass and where to find it.

Have you ever found tumbled glass at a beach?

And if you are a collector

what are your favourite beaches to find sea glass?

 

Resources:

Seaham Hall at Beachlust

7 Sea Glass Beaches in the US… on EliteDaily.com

Glass Beach Fort Bragg on Wikipedia

Sea Glass on the British Isles on Odysseyseaglass

Travel Sea Glass Beaches on India Today

History of Sea Glass on Wikipedia

How to tell the difference between real and fake sea glass on Bytheseajewelry.com

Quickentree74โ€™s eBay shop

My husband has an eBay shop with the above name for many years. He always needed a side income and sold Scalectrix cars and accessories. When we met, he started to buy interesting bulk buys of belts, scarves and other bits and bobs. My definite favourite is the fairtrade cat-ring-holders. They are just so cute.

This year, we discovered that there are many people and artists, who are interested in sea glass. So he started to also sell what we find at the beach. There are several lots of five sea glass pieces untouched, but he also sells drilled sea glass as well as sea glass pendants. And some of the fossils we find. But to be honest: itโ€™s hard to let them go so you just get some special ones that we love to share with our brilliant customers. Please have a look at our versatile eBay shop and โ€œwindow shopโ€ for garden statues, accessories, Scalectrix, sea glass and fossils. We are looking forward to welcoming you as customers at Quickentree74โ€™s eBay shop.