What is Sea Glass?
Genuine Sea Glass is created when pieces of glass are tumbled by the ocean’s currents, softening sharp edges and creating a matted and often frosty appearance.
Fragments of broken glass mix with sand, seashells and small stones just offshore and get caught up in underwater ridges and shell pockets.
The ocean’s currents mixed with these other factors act as a natural rock tumbler, softening the edges and roughing up the surface of the glass over periods of time. The glass eventually washes up on beaches and can be found in shell beds or scattered across the sand.
What may have began as a beer bottle tossed into the ocean at a beach bonfire, a glass window from a house claimed by a hurricane, shards of glass from artifacts lost in shipwrecks or antique medicine bottles & glassware has been recycled by our Mother Ocean and returned to us via the shorelines and beaches of our world.
The exact age and origin of each piece of sea glass is most often difficult or impossible to determine, embedding within it a mysterious beauty unique to each specimen.
Factors such as color, shape, thickness, inclusions in the glass (presence of bubbles in the glass) and location of discovery of the glass may lend clues to its approximate age.
Symbols found on he glass, such as makers marks, lettering or numbers are much better clues as to the origin and age of the glass, although much research is usually required to determine the exact specifics.
Generally speaking, the thicker the glass, the older. Manufacturers of glass bottles have become more efficient in the amount of glass that goes into a bottle over time.
The majority of glass bottles manufactured today are significantly thinner than glass bottles used 50 years ago.
The widely accepted minimum time it takes a piece of broken glass to be transformed into sea glass is approx. 10 to 20 years and it is believed that most sea glass washes up on shores within 5 miles of the location where it originally entered the ocean.