Rainy Day Blues Trade Bead Necklace and Earring Set by Walker Goldsmiths is always fun to wear. These shades of blue Trade Beads are bright and sparkly. They are always attractive, kind of Bohemian yet historical and semi formal. Their history is fascinating. The center focus bead is an 1800’s Bavarian Cobalt hand faceted by Bavarian Cottage families. More than 200 yrs ago or earlier a family of glass workers made or bought the rough glass tubes beads, cut them into beads then hand ground the facets and polished the individual beads for resale to traders.
The glass technicians lay face down on a bench and pressed the beads onto a stone grinding wheel, with water running over the stone to keep the dust down they rotated the beads individually to create the facets on the beads. These early glass faceted beads would have been used in the African Trade and North American Fur Trade market, and can still be found today for sale by Bead Traders. The bright Cobalt Czechs are spacers to protect the antique beads.
The sky blue Padres have a different and unique history too. Padre beads are wound, opaque, light blue glass beads originally from Venice. Also reproduced in China and so many other places because their production technique is relatively simple. The Fur Trapper site gives wonderful info for further study. “Through Spanish and Russian traders, Padre beads spread rapidly into the Southwest and Northwest. In 1778, English explorer Captain James Cook made several references to the effect it was difficult to obtain supplies and furs from the Pacific Coast Indians without this particular blue bead. Padre beads were made in a variety of colors but blue and white were the most sought after by the Northwest Indians”. The name “Padres” come from the use by Jesuit priests who rewarded natives for memorizing prayers and scriptures with these beads as payment.
Rainy Day Blues Trade Bead Necklace and Earring Set by Walker Goldsmiths.
Priced at $ 275, free S&H in the US.