Natural beads are among the most beautiful treasures a beader can have in their stash. Materials such as wood, bone, seeds and shell have been used for making beads since the art was first created. We modern beaders have the pleasure of purchasing them in endless variations, including the versatile and gorgeous Tagua Nut and other trendy ‘new’ substances.
While most shops carry a selection of natural beads, making your own can be a very rewarding experience. Creating a piece of jewelry or art work from materials found in your own neighborhood is a wonderful way to experience nature, to recycle, and to explore creativity.
Nuts, seeds, and even berries make great beads, not only because they are abundant, but their unique colors and textures are so beautiful. Once these tasty morsels have been dried, they can be drilled and lacquered, and transformed into one-of-a-kind baubles.
One of the most interesting materials for homemade beads is the potato. A fun craft project for families, making potato beads can also be a great way to create your own hand carved beads without worrying about using heavy tools. Try this project from Family Corner: Faux Turquoise Potato Beads.
Beads sculpted from flower paste are not something you see in your everyday bead shop. If you happen to have a lot of dried rose petals around, you can use them to create pretty and fragrant natural beads.
If you enjoy wire wrapping, you can also use tougher materials in beadwork. A wire-wrapped sea glass tutorial can easily be adapted for nuts, stones and other natural found objects. Try this project from Sea Glass Journal: Wire Wrap Sea Glass Pendant.
Remember to get out and explore nature, and see the beauty in the little things.
Copyright 2009 Inspirational Beading