Where does Pandora glass come from?
We source our glass from the world's most renowned producers. The glass we use today comes exclusively from Murano in Italy. Some of our earlier jewellery designs featured a combination of Murano glass and Reichenbach glass, which comes from a tiny town in Germany that has produced glass for over 140 years.
Our glass charms are made from glass imported from Murano, an Italian island in the Venetian Lagoon. Murano glass is famous for its vivid colours and superior clarity and transparency. The Murano name is trademarked – only glass created on this island can be called Murano. This region’s ties with the glass industry go back hundreds of years. Venice became a hub for glass production in the 8th century, and the city’s glassmakers moved to the nearby island of Murano in the 13th century. Many believe this move was meant to keep the glassmakers away from the public eye and protect the secrets of their amazing glass.
Most popular glass jewellery
How is glass jewellery made?
Raw glass goes through a complex process called “lampworking” to turn it into beautiful charms. This ancient art takes a steady hand, an eye for detail and lots of practice. Artisans need months of training to create our simpler designs. Learning to make our more detailed charms can take up to a year of training.
Each charm is unique and has slight variations in shape, colour and size. These differences represent the high level of craftsmanship and care involved in making glass jewellery by hand. Let’s take a closer look at how lampworking is used to create our charms.
Step 1: Glass rods
Glass rods are heated over a torch flame, which turns them into molten glass. The molten glass is then wrapped around a coated steel tool called a “mandrel” to create the base charm, ready to be decorated.
Step 2: Annealing
The next step is called “annealing”. This is the process of heating and cooling the glass to stop stress points from developing, making sure the charm is extra durable.
Step 3: Metal core
The final step is fitting a hand-finished metal core to hold the glass in place, so the charm can easily slide onto our bracelets and charm holders. The metal core is often crafted with intricate details – like hearts, stars or words – that are just as important to the design as the Murano glass they hold.
What do we do with leftover glass?
Nothing goes to waste: glass waste at our crafting facilities in Thailand is recycled into new glass products.
Pandora glass charm designs
Our craftspeople are skilled in all kinds of glass-making techniques, which creates endless possibilities for your charm bracelet. Below are some of the methods we use to create our array of charms.
This technique means that colourful patterns and motifs are created inside a glass rod, then revealed when the glass is sliced. We can create practically any motif you can imagine with this technique, from simple designs to detailed portraits.
This marble effect creates a captivating glass charm. It’s formed by wrapping molten glass around a steel rod to make a bead, then rolling it in golden-coloured “frit” (small pieces of granulated glass). When the charm is heated, the frit melts and spreads to create a beautiful marbled effect. Clear glass is layered on top, then a tool is used to create air bubbles before a final clear layer is added to seal in the design.
Murano glass is ideal for creating nature-inspired charms, like flower and butterfly motifs. This intricate process shows craftsmanship at its very best. It involves using special tools to shape ultra-thin glass rods into miniature motifs.
4. Illuminating effects
Dichroic and fluorescent glass combine to create a fairy tale feel. Dichroic glass is two-toned with an enchanting colour-changing effect that looks different depending on the angle, while fluorescent glass brings a subtle glow-in-the-dark effect.
With a total of 70 facets, these glass charms catch the light beautifully. A faceting machine is used to cut the facets along the surface of the glass to create an angular effect.
6. Ocean-inspired texture
Three colours are layered together to create a glimmering sea-like effect, capturing the beauty of ocean waves. The trick to getting this rippled texture is rolling the glass along a grooved mould while it’s still warm.
7. Heart-shaped stones
Heart-shaped cubic zirconia stones are embedded in the glass by hand for this charm design. Making sure each stone is spaced evenly and facing the right way takes next-level hand-eye coordination.
Dichroic glass is used to create a soft iridescent effect, made when thin layers of glass are fused with metallic oxides. This all takes place in a vacuum chamber using a high-voltage electron beam!
How to style glass charms
Whatever your personality and style, there’s a Pandora glass charm to match. If you love minimalist style, clear or iridescent Murano glass designs will add subtle shine alongside a few sterling silver charms.
If you’re more of a maximalist, you can mix and match glass charms in different styles and colours to create a bold, bright bracelet styling. Why not add some dangle charms for an added dimension?
Looking for new ways to wear your Murano charms? Check out our charms guide to get inspired.
How to clean glass jewellery
Want to know how to clean your glass jewellery without damaging it? Here’s how:
1. Dip a soft, lint-free cloth in warm, slightly soapy water
2. Wipe the cloth gently over the glass
3. Wipe the glass again with a damp (but not soapy) cloth
4. Pat the glass with a clean, dry cloth
5. Apply a dab of mineral oil for extra shine
6. Polish the glass with a soft, lint-free cloth for day-to-day care
With all the hard work and skill that goes into each Murano glass charm, they make an extra special addition to your bracelet or charm holder. Explore all our charms to find your new favourite Murano piece.