Murano glass is not merely a commodity like diamonds, silver, or gold. It is an expression of style, beauty, quality craftsmanship, and tradition that can pride itself on long history and unique heritage. Made in Venice from as early as the 7th century and organized as an official craft since the 1200’s, Murano glass in its simplest form is born in special furnaces by melting silica with certain minerals till liquid state, shaping them up to form a required object, then cooling it down. The basics of the craft were learnt by Venetians from the ancient Romans as well as the Middle-Eastern cultures after the conquest of Constantinople. But over the years many secrets of the craft were lost and had to be re-discovered, making Murano glass masters not only artisans, but patients researchers, experimenters, chemistry wizards, and artists. To become worthy of their respected name, the glassmakers studied the craft for years working alongside their fathers to perfect the chemistry and timing of the process, be precise with very simple instruments and create beautiful shapes. That is why most Murano glassmaking firms have been owned and operated by the same families for centuries.
The objects created by Murano glass masters in the early years of the craft were mostly utilitarian yet very expensive and affordable only to successful merchants and nobility. As the appeal of these objects grew and they became more widespread, Venetian masters started to create other types of objects which were more of a fashion statement than a useful household article. Among vases, figurines, and beautiful table centerpieces, eventually some artisans started to create Murano jewelry. Some of the earliest mentions of this go back to the late 1700’s when famous German poet Goethe who traveled to Venice was surprised to see Murano jewelry available for sale there. However, it was not really until later in the 20th century that Venetian jewelry became readily available on the market. In the 20th century most Murano masters were busy with the attempts to revive the stagnant glass-blowing industry and give it its former luster, and to achieve that they focused on participation in prestigious international exhibitions, where artworks such as vases and decorative tableware were represented. As the world gradually became re-acquainted with Murano glass and realized it value and uniqueness, jewelry-making started to prosper on Murano as well, presenting a way to own and wear a unique artistic object at a fraction of the cost of museum-worthy Venetian art glass.
Today’s fashion with its emphasis on unique, hand-made, colorful accessories serves as a perfect backdrop for wearing Murano jewelry. At the time when every type of jewelry is available from diamond extravagance to plastic minimalism, traditional and gorgeous Venetian jewelry graces the necks, wrists and ears of both the world’s elite and regular people with appreciation of Italian style and Murano tradition. The great abundance of accessories for every budget and taste makes people that want to stand out look for something artistic, hand-made and one-of-a-kind. Thus, people buy Venetian jewelry not only because of its exquisite hand-made beauty, but also because of the rich history that surrounds Murano glass and the special mood that these accessories create, evoking the magical images of Venetian palazzos, canals, and gondolas.
While authentic Venetian jewelry is popular and well-known these days, it is by no means available on every corner. However, for those with a desire to buy any of these special pendants, necklaces, earrings, bracelets and other jewelry pieces, there are options for every style and budget. From small elegant studs to opulent beaded necklaces, from traditional classic shapes to Art Nouveau and minimalistic designs, Murano offers amazing variety of unique and colorful hand-made jewelry. And if you don’t plan to visit Venice any time soon, you have a great option of buying authentic Venetian jewelry online from a reputable local importer of these pieces. Whichever option you choose, you are guaranteed to enjoy your very own piece of Venice for years to come and get many compliments every time you wear it.