As sea glass collecting has gained in popularity over the last few decades, hobbyists have found many creative uses for the beautifully colored stones. Not only are these crafts a bit of eye candy, they’re also an eco-friendly means of recycling historical relics for the enjoyment of those who either wear or display them.
Whether you’re a collector or artisan, you can enjoy exploring the many ways to enjoy the colorful allure of sea glass as a simple collector, crafter, or entrepreneur.
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9 Things To Do With Sea Glass
1. Simple Container Displays
Sea glass collectors often enjoy keeping their colorful sea glass pieces accessible and touchable by adding them to any room’s decor in a basket or bowl. An antique mason jar or a clear lamp base filled with colorful glass also draws the eye and can become a conversation starter.
A mounted, labeled display can be useful for dedicated collectors to share their personal knowledge about their finds. This type of display can be mounted on cardboard like a typical rockhound display, or arranged in a many-sectioned container with or without labels.
2. Colorful Jewelry
One of the most popular uses of sea glass is in the creating of beautiful, one-of-a-kind jewelry pieces. Since no two pieces of genuine sea glass are alike, this is one way of verifying authenticity.
Videos and instructions abound to begin making your own awesome sea glass collectibles. Or explore the offerings of artisans around the world. Some of the jewelry you can buy or make for yourself include:
- Rings. There are plenty of tutorials to get you started on your own creations.
- Necklaces, including simple pendants to more elaborate pieces
3. Wall art
Wall art with sea glass can include a shadow box or clear-glass backed mosaic-style creations. Sea glass may be used alone or with other beach findings such as shells or driftwood. The glass may be used to create a pleasing chromatic design or an evocative seaside scene.
Wall art may be thematic or totally random and can be a wonderful gift that will appreciate in value with the dwindling supplies of authentic sea glass. Pieces can be made to fit almost any taste in decor or color.
4. Suncatchers and Mobiles
Colorful and meditative sea glass mobiles can be fun to make and share. You’ll probably want to learn about how to drill sea glass before you begin. Mobiles can be as simple or complex as you desire. There are also many ready-made designs available online. Try to verify that any potential purchase is made with genuine sea glass.
Hanging a suncatcher in any window can help create a soothing space to relax in at the end of the day. It’s especially satisfying if you’ve collected, designed, and built your own. Or you can share a bit of yourself as a great gift for any age to enjoy.
5. Mosaic Art
Mosaics are always fun and generally fairly simple to design and create. And again, there are wonderful artisans online displaying many pleasing ideas for wall or tabletop display.
Remember, sea glass is in no way uniform in thickness, and the natural patina of genuine sea glass is a huge part of its monetary value. When considering a wall-mounted mosaic, these differences will only add interest to the piece. However, for tabletops or other such flat pieces, know that sanding or otherwise “adjusting” the thickness of your sea glass will definitely affect any future appraisal.
If you are purchasing an online mosaic, ask for a certificate of authenticity and, if possible, avoid glass that’s been tampered with.
6. Christmas Ornaments and Decor
Any time of year is a good time to begin creating holiday sea glass ornaments and decor for your own home, as gifts, or to sell. Some ornaments are simple, such as partially filling a clear glass ball ornament or painting snowman faces on clear or white pieces.
Other creations will be more time consuming, such as Christmas trees or seasonal wall art. Add your own personal touch to the holidays by incorporating pieces from your sea glass collection to traditional decor.
7. Lighted Sea Glass Decor
A lovely way to highlight the unique colors in sea glass is to backlight them for mood and interest, as well as function. Sea glass candles are a fairly easy project that even the kids may like to help with. Sea glass nightlights add unique ambiance to a dark room.
Simplistic to exquisitely complex sea glass lighting fixtures provide a touch of unconventional style and historical nuance to the most modern tastes. Lanterns, string lights, and lighted mosaic creations keep sea glass showing off its colors any time of day or night.
8. Sea Glass Accents for Clothing
Although it’s not common, sea glass can be used as accents for clothing. Pieces could be used as accents for hats bags, or scarves. This is great for special or formal occasions, but not for rough wear since it is glass. And it may be wise to attach pieces with a band or other temporary fastening so they can be removed before washing.
9. Sharing or Selling
For some collectors, the greatest enjoyment is found in sharing finds and stories with other collectors. Online forums provide an outlet for learning the history of the glass from specific areas along with pictures to help identify unique specimens.
There is also a tremendous market for quality sea glass. The market continues to fluctuate, but even common colors are becoming rarer, so many hobbyists are often on the hunt for genuine sea glass for authentic crafts. Compare current prices to keep abreast of the market, and research how to rate the value of your pieces for the greatest profit.