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You can view our web site at www.UniqueAfricanArts.com or call us toll free: 1-866-291-9449 for more information You can also browse products from our other store CJBeadstore.com We have a few products from CJBeadstore.com listed below this box.
CJBeadStore.com Products

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Brass Beads

Archive for January, 2010

February. A month of Savings!

sky1This February we will have our annual Black History Month sale. All beads and home decor items will be discounted.
We still have the shipping discount of free shipping for orders of $100 or more.

All paintings will be 45% off.
The sale will start tonight.

Don’t miss the great savings!

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Clay and Stone Beads

Strand of Carnelian Agate beads

Strand of Carnelian Agate beads

Are you looking for beautiful natural stone and clay beads for your designs?

We have a wonderful selection in our store. UniqueAfricanArts.com
We have Carnelian Agate, Bauxite beads, old Mali Clay beads, Spindle Whorl beads, antique Mali stone beads, and ancient Mali African Quartz beads.

These would be perfect to use in bracelets, earrings, or necklaces.

The Carnelian beads are sold in strands of necklaces measuring the length of 22 inches consisting of beads that are 6-10 mm average size.

You can visit the Clay and Stone section of our site by clicking here.
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New Arrivals Swarovski Crystal Beads

Swarovski Green crystal faceted beads 18x9mm

Swarovski Green crystal faceted beads 18x9mm

Looking for beautiful Swarovski Crytals for all of jewelry needs?
We have many varieties to choose from.
We have faceted round 8mm, faceted drop 15×9 mm, faceted drop 18x9mm, round smoke topaz 8mm, golden shadow 8mm and many more.

Simply visit our store link by clicking here.
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How Krobo Beads are Made

This is explanation of how Krobo beads are produced.
Krobo beads are produced from powder glass. That is glass that has been crushed to a pulverized state. The materials used for this are old bottles. Some craftsmen purchase bottles and some find old discarded bottles and various scraps of broken glass.

The photo below shows the glass in a pulverized state.

Bucket of crushed glass

Bucket of crushed glass

The use of various colors depends on the color of the bottle. For instance, brown bottles are from beer and medicine. Indigo is one of the more rare colors but they are still obtainable. The craftsmen layer the various colors of glass in a disk shaped mold that can be seen below. This mold must first be dipped into a special solution so that the molten glass does not bond to the mold itself. Once the mold has been prepared, it can be filled with various colors of crushed glass.

Artisan dipping the ceramic molds into a special solution so that the molten glass does not bond to the mold.

Artisan dipping the ceramic molds into a special solution so that the molten glass does not bond to the mold.

Mud kiln used in the fire process

Mud kiln used in the fire process

Next, the molds are filled with glass and a Cassava stalk is inserted into the middle of each hole containing the glass powder. During the fire process the Cassava stalk is burned away leaving a hole in the center of the bead.  The kiln used in this process is made of mud which has been collected from mounds created by ants. They also use old car parts. The labor involved in the total process is very intensive to produce the beautiful Krobo beads that we all know and love. These kilns usually last for 2 years.
Red hot molten glass in the mold
Red hot molten glass in the mold

Once the glass has become red hot it is removed from the kiln and given to an artisan to shape it while still in the mold. Special tools are used to achieve this step of the process. The tool is inserted into the hole of each bead and it is rolled around at t rapid pace while still hot to perfect its shape.  This technique has been used for many centuries in Africa. A short video clip of this process can be seen below.

To buy some of these beautiful beads visit our store at www.UniqueAfricanArts.com
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Krobo beads a source of wealth

Krobo beads being baked in mud oven

Krobo beads being baked in mud oven

Krobo beads are produced in an environmentally friendly way. Old broken bottles and shards of glass that would normally be discarded have been recycled into beautiful high quality glass beads. The makers of Krobo beads offer a diverse pool of creative designs that can be used to create unique pieces of jewelry. 

Sometimes the bead makers get their inspiration from the designs of the antique trade beads that were used as currency during the African trade period. That being said, you can get a similar look and style of the more expensive trade beads at a more cost effective price.

To see our selection of Krobo beads click here.

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Glass Waist Beads

Wooden female sculpture adorned with waist beads.

Wooden female sculpture adorned with waist beads.

Beads were and still are very important in African Culture. In many instances they are used in rights of passage ceremonies for young girls entering into woman hood. Beads were also used to denote a persons status and social position in African society. They were also used as currency.

Let us look at the Waist Beads as they are used in Africa. Waist beads have been and still are used throughout the African continent.

Traditionally, waist beads are worn under the clothing of Women in Africa. This practice dates back for centuries. In West Africa women wear them to help formtheir shape. Young girls will have them lengthened as they grow.  They are also worn by married women to arouse their husbands during times of intimacy.  It is considered a taboo for a woman to let a man other than her husband touch her waist beads.

Buy some of these beads by clicking here.

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African Ancient Islamic Beads

ba220513These beads are known as Ancient Islamic Beads. They are also called Roman beads.
They where found in Ivory Coast West Africa. They where used in the African trade during the 1800′s.
During the trading period of the 1800′s these beads would have been traded for items such as gold, Ivory, spices,  and passages into certain parts of Africa where foreigners where not permitted to travel.
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Krobo flower design beads

bkrobo20091Beautiful fancy flowers decorate these Krobo powder glass beads.

You may ask, “What are powder glass beads?”  They are recycled glass bottles that have been pulverized into powder and poured into a disk shaped ceramic mold. The next step is to fire them in a mud oven until the powder glass fuses together to form a new bead.

To see this process in motion see the video below.

 

These beads are mearsure 11×11 mm diameter, 27 inches long necklace.

Click here to buy some.

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New arrival EUROPEAN SEED GLASS TRADE BEADS

seed20036These are fine authentic European Matched Glass seed beads. The beads pictured here are emerald translucent seed beads which were made in Europe during the mid 1900′s. The colors are rare.

These would be ideal for jewelry design. The length of this strand is 24 inches long. The average size of each bead is 5mm.

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Krobo Beads

20272_222024229091_22983494091_3100955_2809097_nUniqueAfricanArts.com

 These are authentic Beautiful fancy Eye West African Trade bead. These beads are made from powder glass. Each Bead was hand made in the Kroboland in Ghana West Africa. These pieces were then hand strung. 100% hand made. These beads mearsure 14×13 mm diameter. 28. inches long necklace.

 

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