Welcome to Mermaid's Purse Blog. This is for all Mermaids on land or sea who Love, Love, Sea Glass. These translucent baubles are yesterdays items transformed to true treasures of the sea. The allure of Sea Glass is in the history, science and appearance. Check back often to learn as I learn about Sea Glass. We'll journey together over shores and time, tides and currents, searching for the perfect pieces. Fair Winds and Calm Seas. Deborah Leon.....artist/collector

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Sea Glass Jewelry gets nod from Coastal Creations & Design

Coastal Creations & Design

March 23rd, 2010

Big Write Up on Mermaid’s Purse

Sea Glass Jewelry

South Bay, California Girl gets Noticed

Coastal Creations & Design

Seaworthy Products for Those That Fancy the Sea

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Original Sea Glass Jewelry Creations by Daniel Renee & Deborah Leon

One of the great things about writing a blog like Coastal Creations and Design is the ability to attract wonderful folks that share the same common interests. As fate has it, we recently received a few favorable comments to a current post from two very talented artists, and both create exceptional sea-inpired jewelry from beach-combed sea glass. So I checked out their websites and Wah-lah! . . .the inspiration for another coastal creation. (See what writing a nice comment to our blog might bring you!)

Click : Coastal Creations & Design to read more.

It is a thrill to be recognized for my artwork in making Sea Glass Jewelry. Being paired up with Danielle Renee is most impressive and an honor. In this emerging niche of Sea Glass Jewelry which is very competitive, it’s great to be recognized with a stamp mark of quality.

Thank you to all my clients, followers and visitors. It’s fun sharing and creating for you.

Fair Winds and Calm Seas,

Deborah Leon artist/collector



Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Sea Glass..The Right Drill Bits




Drilling Sea Glass for Jewelry is a knack but with the right drill bits that knack is made a little easier…in fact, a lot easier.


As you see in the pic, the shape may seem confusing to most of you. It’s not sharp and pointed at the end with graduated spiral edges. My drill bits are barrel shaped. WHY? We are grinding Sea Glass NOT cutting it.

Using this type of drill bit reduces the shattering of Sea Glass. The time to make a hole in the Sea Glass is much quicker also.


To get the cleanest and straightest dill holes, I always start with my smallest drill bit. It’s the size of a needle and is the one I use the most. After the 1st hole is made I graduate to the next drill bit til the desired size is achieved. Yes, it means changing the drill bits about 5 times….but that’s the nature of getting the best hole without cracking the Sea Glass.

When drilling your piece of Sea Glass, set it in the water with your piece of wood or sponge underneath ( be sure water covers the surface of Sea Glass ). Many use a marker to mark both sides of the Sea Glass to assure a straight line. I eyeball it unless the Sea Glass is so dark I can’t see through it.

Starting at a low speed ( #2 on my Dremel dial ) to minimize the vibrations, I drill 1/2 to 3/4 way through the Sea Glass, turn it over and drill from the other side.


Good lighting and glasses for safety are a MUST!

GOT QUESTIONS? SEND A COMMENT! I’ll answer your questions.


TO GET YOURS: Fill out form at top, right corner of this PAGE . SUBMIT…you’ll receive a confirmation email. CLICK the link….you’re on your way to the world of Sea Glass with Mermaid’s Purse.

Fair Winds and Calm Seas,

Deborah Leon artist/collector



Friday, March 12, 2010

Sea Glass Hunting & Making Friends

One of the best parts of looking for Sea Glass are the people I meet along the way. This Monday was no exception. After a few times you begin to recognize the other collectors, exchange names and compare finds.

Bruce appears to be a regular, a Manhattan Beach resident who walks the beach because it’s therapeutic for his back, and it turns out he and his wife are nutty for Sea Glass.

Tim Harris hit the jackpot finding a decent sized piece of cobalt blue Sea Glass.
Running into each other Tim just couldn’t contain his excitement and had to do a little show and tell about his cobalt blue find. His excitement infected me to being totally thrilled for him. Sooo…he agreed to a mini photo shoot. Sweet! Happy Hunting Tim, here’s to finding a Ruby of the Sea the next time. :)

Continuing my journey and picking up trash that has been tossed ashore by this years storms, I run into Moms playing with their kids, I offer trash bags and ask if they can do a little cleaning while playing. They are very obliging. (I always carry extra trash bags to hand out )

My last unexpected meet on this expedition was a delightful, sweet woman by the name of Robin. We talked about our finds, etc. and upon learning that I do this for my business she insisted that I take her finds and she hung out for a while to help me look for more Sea Glass. Robin…thank you…so generous and gracious. Enjoy the rest of Spring Break with your daughter and family.

Hunting for Sea Glass is so much more than just the find to make jewelry. It is the Sum and Total of the whole experience, delightful people, salty air, song of sea birds, the ebb and flow of the tide, wet feet, sun upon my face, cleaning my favorite place, and for a moment in time…being in communion with the creator of all creation.

Fair Winds and Calm Seas,

Deborah Leon artist/collector



Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Sea Glass Drilling..Button or Sponge

So It may not be clear to every one why you would use a bowl with water for drilling Sea Glass…When I first heard of this, I was completely skeptical. Won’t I get an electric shock? Then I reflected to the days of home remodeling and my husband cutting tile in water. I reasoned…..I guess I’ll be okay.

The water reduces the heat from the friction of the drill bit and piece of Sea Glass. Keeping it cool is a must!

Wood Button Vs. Sponge.

These two tools are set in the water with the Sea Glass atop. This helps to reduce the impact of vibrations by absorbing much of it.

First I’ll start with the wood button when beginning the hole in the Sea Glass. It’s a firmer, more stable surface for starting the hole.

Then I’ll switch to the sponge to finish the job….it’s softer and absorbs more than the wood button.

Some pieces of Sea Glass shatter easier than others depending on the color of Sea Glass. I find the light blues are extremely sensitive to vibration and can shatter easily. This is such a bummer….the light blues are definitely in the rare category, hard to find and after getting almost to the end and holding your breath for it seems like an eternity just for it to shatter…..well….it doesn’t make for a happy artist. :(

Stay tuned as next I’ll talk about the Dremel. I love my Dremel!

If you haven’t yet, you need to get the Mermaid’s Purse Newsletter. It is filled with information about the world of Sea Glass. The 5 Part Series on Sea Glass is getting rave reviews. Only SUBSCRIBERS GET THIS , and it’s completely FREE.

Use the form at the top right corner of this page. Your a click away.

Be sure to confirm the email from Mermaid’s Purse. The Newsletters will start coming.

Til we gather again,

Fair Winds and Calm Seas,

Deborah Leon artist/collector



Friday, March 5, 2010

Sea Glass, Mermaid's Purse talks about Drilling

Because you asked...Here it is!

Mermaid's Purse talks about Drilling Sea Glass

The second most asked question in my business after…where do I collect my Sea Glass? Is…..

How do I drill the Sea Glass?

In this Post we will start with the tools.

I have found that not all tools are created equal. In fact it took a lot of research, experimentation, practice and patience.


1. Hand Drill: I prefer the Dremel400 XPR, it is light weight, fits my hand well, has 5,000 – 35,000 RPM, 10 speed settings, can be used with a drill press if desired, has endless number of attachments for every job.

2. Collets of various sizes to accommodate the different size drill bits.

3. Drill bits for making holes in glass. This part is huge! You are not cutting Sea Glass, you are grinding Sea Glass. I tried the others that are shaped with a point and spiral (INFERIOR). I order my bits from a wonderfull company call Rio Grande item # 349016. You just have been given the biggest tip for drilling.:)

4. A container for water…most use a plastic container. I feel most comfortable with this shallow finger bowl. A piece of sponge or wooden button is what I use to set the Sea Glass on top of while drilling in the water.

5. Glasses for protection and fine visibility. Many recommend safety glasses or goggles with a larger shield…these make me uncomfortable. A pair of glasses with larger lenses work out just fine for me.

Just a reminder, the items listed are tweaked to my preference. You too may have to experiment.

Next post well start talking about how to use our tools.

I know you may have questions..please feel free to comment and I will respond.

If you haven’t yet, subscribe to Mermaid’s Purse Newsletter to get the 5 part series on Sea Glass. (upper right corner of this page)

Til then,

Fair Winds and Calm Seas,

Deborah Leon artist/collector



Tuesday, March 2, 2010

New Sea Glass Collection - West Winds



Mermaid’s Purse is adding a new collection called:


This line of Sea Glass Jewelry is meant to be more budget friendly so all Mermaids and Mermen can enjoy accessorizing with these incredible sea beauties.

I’ve heard over the past year how much someone loves my pieces but that it was a bit out of reach due to the fact that the existing collections are all set in sterling silver and many rare colors are used.

Sooo…I’m in process of designing pieces using leather and less sterling silver. I’ve been learning how to do Celtic braids and knots with leather. Looks very cool! The color of Sea Glass used will be the common and uncommon colors. None the less beautiful, just easier to find.

WEST WINDS….The name came about while watching the Olympics one evening with great friends and during commercial I asked my friends to throw out ideas for names. Several good suggestions but this is the one that stuck. Turns out it is the name given to a home in Manhattan Beach that my friends just inherited.

I love the name WEST WINDS!!! Makes sense too, seeing that the storms generated that bring Sea Glass to me are North Western, Western or South Western. So there you have it…The WEST WINDS Sea Glass Collection.

Designing and making right now…be watching for pics! You’ll be able to shop soon!

Fair Winds and Calm Seas,

Deborah Leon artist/collector