Copyright 2009 – Kimberly Clay
For centuries, a small island off of the coast of Italy has produced some of the highest quality glass in the world. The island is called Murano and has a long history of glass production that reaches all the way back to the 9th century. Because of the unique materials used and intricate craftsmanship, items such as Murano glass jewelry are now highly collectible and sought after by collectors around the world.
The history of Murano glass really begins in the 9th century when local citizens learned the art of glassmaking from the Romans. Around the end of the 13th century, the government of Venice ordered almost all of their glassmakers to move their shops to Murano. Glassmaking subsequently became a fine art on the island and the artists were considered high society.
This tradition of excellence has carried over into modern times. Murano glass is crafted into a variety of items including drinking glasses, paper weights and figurines. There are also many artists known for their sculptures. These works are created with great care, utilizing elagent lines and very fine detail. Because of the fine quality of craftsmanship, glass works from the island of Murano are often expensive and unique.
The internet offers a multitude of sources to buy these collectibles. But, you need to know how to identify Murano glass. Counterfeits are often made in China and passed off as original. These pieces are usually made quickly, using lower quality material and are not uniformly shaped. The only authentic pieces are those created on the island of Murano. Other collectibles that imitate the style, but are created in other places are merely reproductions. So shop with care.
Since each piece is crafted by a master, these items offer beauty and elegance to the collector. If you are a collector or considering getting into collecting, you may want to consider investing in Murano glass.