To me, the words Africa and beads go together like Romulus and Remus, Baskin and Robbins or Damon and Runyon. In fact, I started working in polymer clay because I wanted to replicate millefiore African trading beads.
So last year, when I was lucky enough to travel in South Africa
I bought beads and bead work in dinky little stores, outdoor markets and anywhere else I could.
I found the beads you see above at a wonderful store in Capetown called Bead Merchants of Africa. The beads are are brass Abijas, blue glass, amber/copal, and millefiore trading beads. Most of these beads are not native to South Africa, but Bead Merchants carries everything!
I have designed a necklace with them and just need to put it together. Alas, it sits unfinished in my workshop! When it is finished, you’ll be the first to see it.