African Trade Bead Necklace Antique and Rare Beads #2
I've collected African Trade beads for decades.
have watched the growing consciousness among collectors and jewelry makers. In the 1960s, they were coming into the country, brought by African traders, predominately from Ghana. They were collecting the beads from many parts of Africa and I was thrilled.
Nowadays, the real trade beads are being valued, as they should, for their history and the artistry. In the days they were made, the artists in Murano, Waterloo, Bohemia, did not have access to the kinds of torches and tools that contemporary glass bead makers have.
I want to add that there are copies to be found and they are charming but absolutely not as beautiful as these, made in the 17th 18th and early 1900s.
I hope that my trade jewelry goes either to people who already know much about their history and travels, or are ready to Google "African Trade Beads" and learn the amazing stories and value of these little treasures.
One of the things you need to know is that the beads are generally sold strung on raffia, and with the same beads in each strand, so I have had to collect for many years in order to be able to offer such variety in each piece. The copper Hishi used to space the beads are made in Kenya and have a history all their own. The necklace is hand knotted wherever a bead had a hole large enough to accommodate the knot.
This necklace has no clasp. It is made to slip easily over your head.