Everyone has a special memory of walking down the beach staring down a the edge of where the water meets the sand and finding that perfect piece of polished glass at our feet. Many people have a hobby of collecting sea glass and making jewelry or other diy projects with it. Making jewelry with authentic sea glass can be a very time consuming task as searching for two identical pieces of sea glass is like looking for two needles in a haystack. Highland Ridge cultivated sea glass makes this process simple and easy with the end result being just as stunning and unique as the natural thing. By starting with standardized colors and sorting it by size Highland Ridge cultivated sea glass can offer high quality pieces of cultivated sea glass that is much easier to make jewelry from. Our process is lengthy and complicated but Highland Ridge is very proud of the superior cultivated sea glass that we are able to produce. Each piece of jewelry made with our cultivated sea glass brings back those fabulous memories we all share as a child finding that perfectly time honored piece of polished glass in the gentle ocean waves.
The process of creating Cultivated Sea Glass™ is lengthy and time consuming. Our sea glass is literally harvested at the completion of natural processes. This cultivation process takes months to complete which may seem like a long time but when compared to decades in the ocean its actually a relatively short transformation.
Cultivated Sea Glass™ is Jewelry Grade. Thru natural processing of uniform material what emerges is high quality and easy to work with because of the uniformity of color and sizes. Jewelers large and small love working with Cultivated Sea Glass™
It all starts by using real glass. Our glass is infused with metal oxides and sulfides when it is still in a molten state then cooled to create a uniform color that is infused in the glass. This glass is then carefully broken in a random manner and the broken glass shards are screened so that the largest ones are broken a second time. At this point the broken glass is sorted by size and using gloves so as not to get cut when handling these glass shards, we place each individual piece of glass on our highly specialized converted CNC Milling machine so that it can be individually drilled. After being drilled, these jagged shards of glass are placed in our proprietary cages that hold the glass when it is placed in natural wave action so that nature can finish the job.
Traditional sea glass that is found on the beach takes decades to form because the ocean shoreline is constantly changing. In order for a piece of broken glass to transform into sea glass it has to be at just the right place on the edge of the beach where the energy from the wave action is highest. In nature what happens is this piece of glass is pushed up on the dry part of the beach or deeper in the water where it might sit for days, weeks, or years before continuing its transformation at just the right spot on the waters edge. Our proprietary cages take the guesswork out of the equation by keeping the glass at just the right spot where natural processes can transform broken glass into a masterpiece in months. In the end only 64% of the glass that we start with is actually transformed into Cultivated Sea Glass™. The rest is lost during the process of rounding edges and corners. What remains is only the best beautiful rare specimens of jewelry grade sea glass.
Our process of cultivating sea glass is a long and lengthy process that involves both highly refined machines and the natural wave action found on the beach. With the help of a Chemist and an Aerospace engineer Highland Ridge has been able to create a cultured Sea Glass that is extremely unique and exhibits all the same properties as the pieces that have been in the ocean for decades. Our process is slow and takes months to take a rough piece of glass and transform it into a natural masterpiece. By speeding up the chemical process and the natural wave action that is normally done by the ocean our state of the art jewelry shop is able to create a very unique product that many say is even better than the real thing. Highland Ridge is happy to share our time honored cultivated sea glass with the world thru our Sea Glass Jewelry and Sea Glass Supplies for your DIY Sea Glass and Beach Glass projects.
Highland Ridge only works with Cultivated Sea Glass™ because of the ability to get uniform color and size from a natural processed sea glass. It is cultivated because it is harvested. We love sea glass and want to share it with the world.
What is the difference between Cultured Sea Glass and Cultivated Sea Glass™? We get this question all the time as both are man made products. There are many people that culture their own sea glass by taking colored glass and putting it in a rock tumbler. There are Chinese companies that use giant cement mixers to make huge batches of cultured sea glass. Cultivated Sea Glass™ is actually harvested from natural processes making it very different than cultured sea glass.
Cultured sea glass that is made in huge batches is typically painted with a translucent paint after being tumbled. This paint creates a frosted look and coloration to the glass, but is often only temporary. What happens to painted glass when worn as jewelry? Everyone knows the answer, the paint wears off. Assuming the paint is safe for your health, you end up with a piece of clear see thru glass hanging around your neck. Because anyone with a rock tumbler can make cultured sea glass, large producers are forced to make glass as cheap as possible. Typically what you will find with cultured sea glass is a pretty low quality product.
Cultivated Sea Glass™ is made by an entirely different process. The frosting look comes from months of natural exposure to random sizes of grinding medium. The next time you are at the beach look around, you will see sand, pebbles, rocks, and probably boulders all in different areas. At the waters edge you will see a mixture of pebbles and sand. When producing Cultivated Sea Glass™ the same natural process is used. This is perhaps the biggest difference in what creates a higher quality jewelry grade product. When you load a rock tumbler with sand, rocks, and glass the end result is 100% sand with a couple rocks. All the glass as it is completely tumbled away. We harvest sea glass from natures natural processes after seeding it with broken glass months prior, the result is stunning and we are proud to call it Cultivated Sea Glass™