The rough and tumble of the online Murano glass market has never been more brutal as Chinese imports positioned as Murano glass have overrun REAL Murano glass. Certainly, there are some novice sellers who truly don't know they're hawking cheap Chinese junk, but increasingly, there are Murano glass sellers who KNOW they're selling frauds, and, in fact, are importing them directly from China themselves.
While I couldn't possibly have the time to point out every one of the Chinese frauds that have innundated the market, there are some that are so common that they need calling out.
The Flavio Poli Fraud
Most Murano collectors have run across this one--the "Murano" sommerso teardrop sculptures, often being attributed to Flavio Poli. Flavio Poli was the head designer at Seguso VDA in the mid-century period and perhaps the most famous name associated with sommerso/submerged glass> and these CURRENT (NOT VINTAGE) pieces are amongst the worst offenders.
A quick eBay search on past auctions of this piece (click here) will give you an idea of how rampant this scam is. Note that some of these even have fake Murano labels--keep your eyes out for these labels as other Chinese pieces sport them as well. First, let's dispell the 'vintage' claim that often accompanies them. These teardrop sculptures are so new, a simple Amazon.com search will bring up a bunch of them. And they are so obviously from China that a quick search of Alibaba.com will bring forth these pieces in myriad colors. In fact, while you're on Alibaba.com, throw in various glass search terms to see even more familiar Murano glass frauds.
Stay tuned for more glass talk! And--if there's a topic you want to learn more about, please feel free to let me know in the comments or at firstname.lastname@example.org. Until then, happy hunting!