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Buying Genuine Murano Glass

 By Natasha Sheldon

Murano glass ranges from necklaces and earrings to paper weights, glass vases and table wear. But how can you be sure you are buying the genuine article?

 

 

 

(picture credit: Warburg c/o Wikimedia Commons)

For many people, a visit to Murano is completed with the purchase of a piece its famous glass ware. All over the island are outlets selling pieces to suit every pocket- from small traditional styled perfume bottles and lamp work bead jewellery to stunning sets of contemporary wineglasses and ornate chandeliers.

 

But not every piece of Venetian glass on sale is the genuine article. To ensure a genuine purchase, look for the Murano mark of excellence and shop from a recommended outlet.

 

Murano Best Buys: From Glass Jewellery to Chandeliers.

 

The range of Murano glass on sale is impressive. Styles range from the traditional to contemporary, with everything from small gifts to impressive show pieces.

 

  1. Venetian glass ornaments. These include glass stoppers, traditional coloured glass perfume bottles , paper weights of millifiori, engraved and coloured vases, clocks and Christmas decorations
  2. Glass Jewellery. Using glass beads of various types, Murano glass jewellery ranges from earrings and rings through to glass necklaces and pendants.
  3. Sculpture. Murano glass sculptures range from small pieces for the home to monumental show pieces, such as the glass ice star created by Simone Cenedese which is on display in the centre of Murano’s main island.
  4. Glass table wear. Including glasses, bowls and vases, Murano glass tableware can be made from coloured or clear glass, engraved, embellished or plain. Designs again range from the traditional to stylish contemporary ranges.
  5. Chandeliers. Age old styles can be purchased as well as stylish modern innovations.

 

    Vetro Artistic Murano.

     

    Murano may be the centre of Venetian glass making but that does not guarantee that every shop on the island stocks the genuine article. Many shops sell cheap imported copies from places like China. Some many bear signs guaranteeing their goods, but once inside, it is difficult for visitors to judge whether or not they are buying genuine Murano glass.

     

    Fortunately, the glassmaking community of Murano have come up with a mark of excellence which highlights genuine glassware.

     

    The Vetro artistic Murano mark is found on all genuine glassware. Its motif is in dark red or blue and represents a glass making tool on a plate. It includes the words ‘vetro artistic Murano’ in gold leaf. Each stamp includes a code of manufacturing which is individual to the certified producer of the piece. (See http://www.muranoglass.com for details).

     

    Recommended Galleries.

     

    The Vetro Artistic Murano mark is only awarded to shops and outlets who sell glass that conform to the standards of the Muranese master glassmakers. The following are amongst the galleries and shops that are approved by the scheme:

     

    1. La Fenice (Fondamenta da Mula, Murano. website http://www.vetrerialafenice.com/vetro-di-murano-catalogo.php. Specialises in traditional and contemporary styles of glass including wine glasses, vases and perfume bottles.
    2. Tommasi and Figli. ( Rivalonga Conterie,Murano. Website: http://www.tommasi-store.com/catalogue/jewelry/index.htm. specialises in Murano glass jewellery
    3. Simone Cenedese (Fondamenta Vetrai, Murano. Website www.simoncenedese.it). Offers a beautiful range of contemporary styled glasses, ornaments and lighting.