I design bead jewellery, working with antique and vintage beads, mainly African Trade Beads from Mali and Ghana both in my own designs and in designs that I create from my client's own beads. Please see my bead restringing page if you are interested in this service.You will see a list of options and prices
You can view and purchase my jewellery from my etsy shop where you'll find one of a kind bracelets and necklaces using antique glass trade beads from Europe and Asia.
All of the designs below are for sale in my ETSY SHOP here
What are Trade Beads ?
In Africa, trade beads were usedto trade for slaves, services, and goods such as palm oil, gold, and ivory.
The term Trade Beads applies to beads made predominately in Venice and Bohemia and other European countries and traded in Africa and the Americas. Many of these beads were made in Germany, France and the Netherlands as well. Beads used in the African trade, the Russian fur trade and among Native American Indians for currency during the 1800s through the mid 1900s.
In Mali the ancient trading centerof D'jenneand the surrounding Niger River Basin is where most Islamic and medieval ancient beads have been foundD'jenne dates back to 250 BC. This Area of Africa relied on imports of glass beads as there does not seem to have been signs of local glass bead production. In Ghana today there are many workshops producing glass beads (using old bottles etc) and there is evidence that the Krobo peoples made glass beads for trade and adornment. In Ghana brass beads are made using the lost wax method ( originating in the Baoule tribe, prolific producers of brass ornaments and charms in the Côte d'Ivoire and Ghana.)
Glass beads such as sky blue Padre Beads became a big part of the regalia of American Indians .Trade beads were brought to them by Fur Traders during a period of 200 years. The beads had a great role to play in the lives of the Native Americans and their culture.
Can I buy your jewellery?
Yes I have a selection of my bead and textile jewellery for sale in my etsy shop - I do not sell my jewellery from this website.
Do you Restring Beads?
As well as selling my own African trade bead designs I am also able to offer a restringing and re-design service for those clients who would like me to create something original from their own beads.Through my own contacts I can source unique clasps and fastenings as well as different threads and silks to suit every type of design. I am able to source ancient and antique beads including African Trade Beads, Moroccan Amber Beads, Roman Glass Beads, and Middle Eastern Coral and Silver Beads.
I buy these rare and sometimes ancient trade beads mainly in Ghana where every town has its own bead market selling antique and modern glass, stone and metal beads. Ghana and Mali are the best places to find Trade Beads as it is the ports on the West Coast of Africa where most of the beads were bought in.
Many of the designs that you see here may be purchased directly from my etsy shop
Most of my designs also contain modern glass and stone beads selected to compliment the older more collectable and much more expensive ones.If you need more information on the beads I use please email me
If you are not 100% happy with your purchase you can return it for a refund please contact me firstname.lastname@example.org