Bermuda is world renowned for its shipwrecks and, as a result, has also become quite famous for its sea glass — nature’s way of making treasure out of trash. Bottles, jars and other glass products thrown into the ocean are weathered by saltwater and sand, creating unique pieces. Some local shops, such as Kelly Diel’s Seaglass Studio, sell handcrafted jewellery and ornaments made from these gems. Diel, a native Bermudian who’s been crafting original pieces for 10 years, began by making sun catchers and wind chimes. “I started collecting sea glass because I really loved the way the sunlight shows through the glass,” says Diel. “You could take a piece of sea glass that’s brown, hold it up to the light and it’s golden amber.” Some of the best spots to find sea glass are Dockyard Beach and Alexandra Battery Beach. Dockyard Beach is reserved for local artists like Diel, but Alexandra Battery Beach is open to visitors. It’s not large, but the glass here is some of the oldest and most colourful. Its shores, shallow waters and sea caves harbour great treasure troves of the beautiful glass. Diel specialises in jewellery created from sea glass in rare and commonly found colours. One of her most prized finds was an orange piece — the rarest colour — the size and shape of a small egg. “I wrapped it in 14-karat gold-filled wire and added crystals,” says Diel. “It’s a one of a kind. No one will ever have another one like it — ever.” At her studio in St. George’s, she also sells decorative signs, mirrors and sculptures made from driftwood and other gifts from the sea. The artfully crafted items make for mementos that are quintessentially Bermuda.
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