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Carnival glass jewellery

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Glass Jewelry79 of 201A collection of beads expanding from early 1900's to 1999!  Spotty glass bead necklace
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    Posted 5 years ago

    (8 items)

    I bought these two necklaces off eBay seperately last year. I don't know much about them. They are similar and I love them both.

    I was trying to research when carnival glass was used in jewellery in general. One blog I read said it was used in mourning style jewellery in the late 19th century and was used in jewellery till it lost popularity to AB glass in the 50s and has been revived since in the 70s and 80s. Does that sound about accurate? I didn't find any other sources of information on the jewellery side of carnival glass history.

    And specifically what about my necklaces? The one with the brass clasp has more scratches, I guess it was worn more. But the other one with the barrel clasp just looks a bit newer to me. Any clues in the age of these?

    Also they both have a clear bead line type thread. Does this help date them, or could they have been restrung?

    I really appreciate any thoughts on this :-)
    I'm looking forward to finding new leads to research!

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    1. Efesgirl Efesgirl, 5 years ago
      Your necklaces are not made from carnival glass. The beads are faceted rainbow hematite. These necklaces are modern pieces made after 1980 as they have a clear thread.
    2. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thanks Efesgirl, I didn't know about rainbow hematite :-) so that's helped identify these specifically.

      I'm still wondering about the carnival glass jewellery in general. What's the difference between the terms Aurora Borealis and Carnival Glass? Are they both terms that are legitimately used for glass jewellery? When I research I keep finding similar things labelled either or both. At first I thought AB was a coating that left the glass transparent, and carnival glass coatings were more opaque on an already coloured glass. But now I'm really confused.
    3. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thanks for the love
    4. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Another question, can you please enlighten me on the brass clasp (I'm trying to learn how to date these things)? I realise this necklace is modern, what date range does this style of clasp have? Same as the necklace, post 1980's?
    5. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thanks for the links Efesgirl
    6. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thank you aura for loving these :-)
    7. Efesgirl Efesgirl, 5 years ago
      The appearance of carnival glass jewelry and rainbow hematite is nearly the same. Hematite is a mineral and is weakly magnetic. Do you have a strong magnet for testing? Carnival glass will not react to a magnet.

      Aurora Borealis

      Created by Swarovski in 1956. It is a thin layer of metallic coating applied to the surface of the bead or stone which gives it an iridescent effect.

      Most AB jewelry is translucent. I have some necklaces posted on my page.

      Here is a close up photo of carnival glass beads for comparison against your necklaces:

      Carnival Glass
      Pressed dark glass that has been sprayed with metallic salts for an iridescent quality
    8. Efesgirl Efesgirl, 5 years ago
      Difficult to accurately date pieces of jewelry that have possibly been restrung without knowing if the original clasps have been used.
    9. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thanks so much Efesgirl you've been so helpful explaining the difference between AB and Carnival Glass and all the links were great to help me see examples.

      It's interesting because I always thought hematite was magnetic and thought that would be an easy way to quickly identify rainbow hematite, but apparently not so. One of the first links you gave me for modern rainbow hematite says it's non magnetic. It doesn't really matter though because the bead thread says it all anyway. And I have to admit when I first saw the necklace with the brass clasp I guessed (without much experience) that it might be 60s. But now I see it would be easy to reuse some old bits with new beads.

      Anyway it's all new to me, so thanks again for all your help
    10. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thank you kyratango and martika for the love :-)
    11. pebble pebble, 5 years ago
      Gorgeous pair of necklaces! This thread clears up a mystery for me too - I have a long string of these beads. They seem different to the plain black glass ones I have, heavier and smoother somehow, so this would explain it. Always learning something from here!
    12. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thank you pebble. I love these necklaces too and so glad I know more about them. It's really good to be learning from everyone's knowledge. Very helpful people here.
    13. Zilla Zilla, 5 years ago
      Thank you nutsabotas6

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