The beach has always been a place of tranquility for me – a place to reflect and make better sense of the world. It was on one such visit, last April that my husband spotted several tiny fragments of glass, nested amongst the many pebbles on the shore.
I picked them up and was struck immediately by their uncompromising beauty. My husband went on to divulge what he knew of sea glass, its origins and the part that nature played - how it had spent years crafting the delicate gems that I held in my hand.
As a declutter coach I am well practiced in taking the essence of a space and helping my clients craft it into a welcoming environment that brings them joy and excitement. With sea glass, I had found nature’s essence and a passion that would evolve into a jewellery business that still gives me endless hours of exploration, experimentation and pleasure.
Within this series of blog posts I invite you to join me on my continued journey into the wonderful world that I have uncovered, sharing with you the natural wonder of sea glass, and how with the Sea Glass Company, we continue to handcraft truly unique and occasionally very rare pieces of jewellery.
It is rather endearing that sea glass is referred to the world over as ‘mermaids teardrops.’ Though to see them it is not difficult to understand why. The size, texture and frosted colour are impossible to recreate artificially (and many have tried). It has an almost magical allure.
My initial journey began with many hours of online study and research, wherein I learned of the rich history of sea glass:
Where does sea glass come from?
Sea glass begins its life as broken bottles, discarded glassware and even debris from shipwrecks. These waste products are thrown into the sea, and Mother Nature begins her own recycling process.
The glass is tossed and tumbled by the waves. Larger pieces are broken down and lose their sharp edges. Friction with materials in the sea and frequent weathering causes the glass to abandon its slick appearance in favour of the familiar frosted appearance that we have come to associate with sea glass.
Perhaps most fascinating of all, is the length of time needed for sea glass to be produced. On average it takes between twenty and forty years of constant erosion for sea glass to be formed. Some pieces have been discovered that are over two hundred years old!
Consider it, the glass that you find on your home shores was thrown into the sea perhaps many years before you or even your parents were born.
I started to feel like an archaeologist, tracing the origins of my finds and uncovering the local and social trends of years gone by.
From sea glass into jewellery.
Being a professional artist, I started to imagine how my teardrop treasures could be enhanced without compromising their original beauty. By crafting them into jewellery I knew I could produce some truly magnificent and unique pieces.
Aided by just about every instructional video available, and armed with a pair of pliers and some sterling silver wire, I practiced wrapping the glass - conscious that if I got it wrong, my new found passion was going to prove to be rather expensive to maintain.
More research led to tarnish resistant wire and a much more cost effective way to experiment. I shared my pieces on Facebook and within a week, friends began to ask when they were going on sale, even expressing a wish to pre order certain pieces.
At this point I had no designs on selling my creations and struggled with the idea of charging for them. I had never made jewellery before. This was something that had only been in my life for only a few weeks after all.
From passion to produce
Only a few days later - following an ever-increasing demand for my jewellery - I decided to set up my own jewellery business, and on the 1st June 2020 The Sea Glass Company was born.
Within eight weeks of trading I started to receive orders from all over the world. One year on and the demand has not declined, neither has my desire to delve further into this world and create new and increasingly more adventurous yet elegant pieces of jewellery.
Future blog posts will feature specific items as well as the story behind design ideas. I’d like to share with you, one or two pieces that I have sold:
‘Laura’ is an anklet that I was commissioned to make as a 21st birthday present from a father for his daughter.
The item was created using rare blue sea glass and sterling silver, and the piece was named after his daughter. I’m pleased to say both father and daughter were overjoyed with their purchase:
“…I can tell you what a truly beautiful piece this is and I have the happiest daughter ever, thanks Rebecca.”
Mark Stratford (Father to Laura Stratford)
Another review I received on our Facebook business page was from Lucy Sheffield. I created a necklace from a beautiful piece of rare pink sea glass:
When I create my pieces I try to make sure the natural charm of the sea glass is not compromised and is enhanced by my interpretation. Again, I am overjoyed that Lucy is receiving as much pleasure in receiving this item as I had in creating it.
“I bought this beautiful rare piece of pink seaglass off Rebecca.
She made it into the most gorgeous necklace. It’s the most stunning piece of jewellery. Not only is her jewellery incredible, the service she provides with such love & care is a huge part of her fab business approach.”
Lucy Sheffield (Verified Purchase)
I do feel truly blessed that my creations are being so well received and the natural charm of sea glass is recognised throughout the world. Very soon you will be able to sign up to my VIP members list on the site. Until then you can like and follow my progress on my Facebook business page and group, and of course, browse our online shop.
I look forward to welcoming you.