Friday, November 14, 2008

The Hunt For Sea Glass, Craft Show Schedule

Tomorrow's craft show is at the Vincentown Fire House in Southhampton, NJ. The fire house is located on Race St in the Village of Vincentown. The show runs from 9am to 3pm.

For those that follow my sea glass hunting exploits, today should have been one of the biggest days to find sea glass. To recap...

Last night was the new moon and an important new moon. The moon is closer to the earth this month than usual and the tides were much more severe than usual. Last weekend, I found several decent pieces of beach glass and saw many shell beds in the surf...something that has been missing from the beach since late July/early August. So I had high hopes for this New Moon, which is also referred to as the Spring Tides.

I've been working overnight on my JOB, so my hubby made the trip to the beach, a few hours before low tide. He said he was disappointed by what he saw...a clean beach, with very little debris, such as driftwood, shells, etc. The one positive thing he noticed... with the exception of a few people surf-fishing, there were no footprints in the sand ( so no one was searching for glass)

Within minutes, he located a cobalt blue piece of glass. Not quite jewelry quality, but since cobalt is considered rare (about 1 in 5,000 pieces) he thought it was a good sign. 30 minutes later, he wasn't sure he would find much more than the cobalt piece and after 2 hours on the beach, he only had 5 pieces of beach glass... none being jewelry quality (but one was a nice shade of olive green)

So he turned around and began walking back, this time near the surf... and found nothing, not even shells in the surf and the peak of low tide was rapidly approaching.

He walked back to within a couple of blocks to where he had started his search and noticed something funny in the sandbar. The water was only a few inches deep and the waves were being wiped out well before they hit the surf, turning the ocean into a lake near the shoreline.

One half block from where his search began, he saw IT... a huge bed of shells lay exposed on the sand. The tide had pulled out so far, it had exposed the shell beds and without waves, there was not enough "pull" in the tide to bring the shells with them. Hubby walked back and forth as the current moved across this shell bed, moving the shells around for him (he said it was like mining for gold) and he was there to pluck the pieces of sea glass before the next gentle rush of water re-arranged everything for him again... and again.

In all, he spent a half hour walking back and forth over a 20-30 foot area, just plucking out the pieces. When things became slow, he decided to move on and walked another couple of blocks before realizing that the spot he found was the only giving up sea glass. He saw several spots with lots of shells in the surf, but the sand bar was deeper and not able to keep the waves back.

So back to his spot he went, hoping the conditions hadn't changed.

They did, but only slightly. Some of the waves were coming across the sandbar, but the stronger current brought up some bigger pieces that were probably sitting in the water earlier...pieces that the much weaker current couldn't move. He found a beautiful chunky green piece of sea glass, much too big for a piece of jewelry, but it's going to look great in one of my vases. It obviously been in the ocean for a long, long time. It's well weathered and probably the thickest piece of sea glass in my collection. They haven't made bottles this thick in decades and the color almost looks like a teal. There seems to be a lot of blue highlights in the green.

Overall, my hubby came home with about 50-60 pieces of sea glass, several great shells that I'll use as props in some of my pictures and a couple nice pieces of driftwood. Almost all of his findings for the day came from this one 30 foot section on the beach.

If I didn't have a show tomorrow, I'd be going back with my hubby to the spot, just to see what the stronger than usual high tides brought in... maybe I'll be out there with the family on Sunday, waiting on low tide.

Besides my show tomorrow, this is the remainder of my Holiday craft show season...

Nov 22- Bricktown High School- PTSA Holiday Craft Show 9am-4pm

Dec 5th- Little Egg Harbor- Holiday Craft Faire- 5pm-9pm

I'm looking into the possibility of one more show in December or doing a home show, but I suppose it will depend on how tomorrow's show and the Bricktown show does. Most of the shows seem to be well received by the public, but many of those people aren't spending much money (if any at all)

The results of a couple of the shows were less than expected (though one wasn't bad, but I'm still disappointed because the potential for a great show wasn't realized) due to the weather. A third was just an awful show. Not run well, very little variety and even though the turnout was stronger than last year, I believe both customers & vendors were disappointed with the show.

Here's hoping for a strong finish and great results for everyone doing shows this holiday season!

'til next time...