Saturday, July 31, 2010

Beach Glass Tutorial

As promised, here's the tutorial on making your own beach glass!

Start out with plain glass. I used beer bottles, because of the color variety. Smash them up one by one inside of a bag to whatever size you want your finished product to be. This will probably make holes and glass splinters in whatever bag you use, so I layered up four plastic shopping bags and smashed mine inside of those on my driveway with a large hammer. You may also want to wear safety glasses just in case. 

I used one of these Rock Tumblers that I had lying around. This one's made for about half a pound of glass, grit, and water, so I used the following:
1/2 of a glass beer bottle
5 heaping tsp playground sand
Fill to the top of the glass with water

Of course, if you have the special grit, you can go ahead and use that, but since beach glass isn't smooth, I found the playground sand worked perfectly, and is a lot cheaper.

After about 3-4 days of tumbling, I got this pretty authentic looking beach glass. Obviously, the longer you leave the glass in there, the smoother / more worn it will look. You'll have to change out the sand every few days though, as the particles will get smaller and less abrasive.

But if you don't want to go through all that trouble, you could always just buy a bag of these at your local craft store :)

These are two pendants I made as gifts while trying out different wire wrapping techniques. Also a pair of earrings that I made before, if you're looking for ideas. 

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