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I love beautiful vases. I have a collection of them in the lounge room that catch the evening light through the window. Of all my vases, the most prized ones are the ones I bought in Venezia when I was there in 2010. To be more precise, I bought them on the beautiful island of Murano, which is a boat ride from Piazza San Marco in the centre of Venezia.

Murano was quite a surprise. I’d been told by a Venetian friend to avoid it as it was like a Turkish Suq. However travelling in late autumn I found it to be picturesque, quiet and simply delightful. To me it was like a smaller and slightly poorer cousin of la Serenissima – but one where you could feel comfortable and at home. The reason I travelled to Murano was to buy some authentic Murano glassware. In Venezia, there are shops everywhere peddling colourful “Murano” trinkets but I wanted to be sure I was buying something made locally, by an artisan and totally authentic.


I was lucky enough to be introduced to the manager of Schiavon Glass, Annarita Schiavon, a delightful and classy Venetian lady who took me on a tour of the Schiavon warehouse, which was founded by her father. She lead me through room after room of vases, glasses, chandeliers, jewellery – just when you thought you had seen the most exquisite piece, another appeared before your eyes. Not only were there modern pieces, but also delicate antique glassware. I settled on a set of three clean lined vases with gold leaf through them. I took a photo of them on the shelf before they were packaged to be shipped back to Australia.

Three Murano vases in the Schiavon warehouse waiting to be bought (by me!)

After shopping, we walked around the narrow calle (streets) and canals and marvelled at how quiet and peaceful the island was. We had a bit of lunch by the water and caught the ferry back to our little apartment in San Marco. I was terribly excited about my purchase. Now every time I look at my Murano vases on the shelf at home, I think of that glorious day on Murano.

As I am travelling back to Italy in less than a month, I will be returning to Venezia (perhaps to buy more Murano glassware) as well as staying at two agriturismi (agriculture plus tourism – a bit like vacationing in a farmhouse) – one in Veneto and one in Friuli. I look forward to sharing my experiences there with you. A presto!


  • sharon whitehead says:

    i really enjoyed reading this post and looking at your lovely photos . Your vases are stunning , i love their simplicity.My husband and I also went to murano where we purchased some lovely wine glasses and champagne flutes , we have had lots of enjoyment from them using them for any special occasions .

  • Thanks so much Sharon. I imagine you look at your lovely glasses and think of Murano. It is amazing how they ship them over and they arrive intact. I bought heavier vases rather than delicate glasses as I was concerned about them breaking….clearly I should not have worried!

  • clare says:

    I loved murano. All I could afford was a tiny piece of beautiful red glass that they put on a piece of string for me. I adore that little piece of glass. We walked around the island as best we could and stumbled across a primary school Christmas concert in an ancient church. They thought it was all normal and welcomed us to sit and listen. Ahh, Venice.

    • A beautiful story Clare – children singing Christmas carols – how spontaneous and lovely!

      • Ciao Catherine, so you are also Veneta. I will be publicizing classes on my Facebook page; they will start in either late August or early September. They will be small and very personal classes, probably held once a month. I am going to Italy in July and will be seeking new food experiences to share! Thanks so much for your interest – maybe we will meet one day, grazie mille!

  • While seeking Murano glass information online, I came across your post with some stunning pictures of the island of Murano. Murano vases are simply awesome and can lift any atmosphere with their beauty. Thanks for the info!

  • Feline says:

    I must say you bought unique Murano glass vases, I have some experience with this domain and I can tell you that what you bought is valuable! Well done!

  • Together with my wife, we bought a beautiful sculpture in Murano sometimes ago. It was the gift for our 5 years anniversary. In 3 months time we will celebrate 10 years anniversary and we are planning to go back to Venice!!! I hope we can find something special for this occasion as well :).
    Thanks for sharing your post!

  • Your vases look awesome! Could I ask you if they are made with gold infused?

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