Beadshaper

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Saturday, May 8, 2021

PENDANT

Pendants were among the earliest forms of jewelry. A copper pendant believed to have been made in Sumeria, the first civilization, around 8700 B.C. has been found by archaeologists. In Babylonia around the 8th Century B.C. seals that were used to sign documents by imprinting in wet clay tablets were worn as pendants. The earliest pendants were made of stone, but later glass and gemstones were substituted. The Pharaohs in agent Egypt wore a type of pendant called a cartouche. The cartouche had a rectangular shape and had the name of the Pharaoh inscribed on it. It was supposed to protect him from evil. The ancient Greeks made gold pendants. The Greek necklace often featured multiple small vase-shaped pendants portraying figures of deities in Greek mythology. The ancient Romans also made gold pendants, but they more often consisted of one focal pendant. Sometimes a cabochon gem would be set in the gold pendant. Pendants were also worn in ancient India and ancient China.

The pendant pictured above can be found at ANCIENT AGATE PENDANT - Pendants and Focal Glass Beads (beadshaper.com)

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Friday, April 30, 2021

FANNY

The name Fanny or Fannie is of French and Latin origin. In Latin it means from France. In French it means free. It can be derived from the Spanish name Estefany (Stephanie) which means crown. Among American Jews in the early twentieth Century, it was an Anglicized version of Feygele (little bird).

There are a number of famous women who were named Fanny or Fannie. Examples were Fanny Brice (American comedian and actress), Fannie Davies (British pianist), Fanny Kekelaokalani (member of Hawaiian royal family of the Kingdom of Hawaii in the 19th century), and many others.

The picture above is of a handcrafted lampwork glass bead named Fanny Fish. It can be found at FANNY FISH LAMPWORK PENDANT (beadshaper.com)


Wednesday, April 28, 2021

ABSTRACT ART

Pure abstract art is art where there are no figures that look the way people and objects look to the human eye. Until the invention of the camera in the 19th Century, art was the only way that people could copy reality as we see it. Advances in art over time improved on this depiction of reality from the 2 dimensional drawings that existed from the time of cave drawings through most of the Middle Ages. With the coming of the Renaissance, artists developed the technique of drawing lines and varying sizes to give paintings depth. Sculpture was always 3 dimensional but achieved a maximum of realism with Roman sculpture which was later revived during the Renaissance. With the invention of the camera, it was no longer necessary for art to be realistic, because photography did that. This resulted in Impressionism in which paintings still depicted people and objects, but the artist was free to add his own feelings to the picture, not just what his eye saw. Colors were often more vivid than the actual colors in real life. Pictures improved on reality. Then in the early 20th Century, this freedom from realism developed various degrees of abstraction, culminating in art that was completely abstract where there were no recognizable figures and colors represented the artists feelings or perceptions like sound and touch that in the past were not represented in visual art. Some of the earliest abstract artists were Wassily Kandinsky, Pablo Picasso, and Henri Matisse. Abstraction has influenced new art including functional art for the past century.

There are abstract influences in modern jewelry design as you can see in the design of the silver foil strip on the cuff bracelet pictured above pictured above. It can be found in the Beadshaper Gallery at BRASS AND SILVER CUFF BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

Thursday, April 15, 2021

THE EARTH WOMAN SILENT FILM

The Earth Woman is an American silent film made in 1926. The film was produced by Dorothy Davenport and directed by Walter Lang. It can not now be seen because it has apparently been lost. The star of the film was Mary Aulden who played the Earth Woman. Other actors in the film included Priscilla Bonner, Russell Simpson, and Carroll Nye.

The copper cuff bracelet pictured above was inspired by the lost film. Although the film is lost, the bracelet can be found at EARTH WOMAN COPPER CUFF BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

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Saturday, April 10, 2021

CUFFS

Although cuff bracelets date back to ancient times, fabric cuffs began in Europe during the Renaissance for the purpose of preventing the edge of shirt sleeves from fraying.

The metal cuff bracelet pictured above can be found at GLAZE-LIKE COPPER CUFF WITH STONES (beadshaper.com)

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Tuesday, April 6, 2021

ORIGINS OF GLASS BEAD MAKING


Glassmaking is believed to have begun about 5,000 years ago in the Middle East, perhaps in Mesopotamia. Some think glass was discovered as a by-product of making metal which had originated in an earlier millennium. The earliest glass objects were apparently beads. Since then the art of making beads has been perfected. The contemporary lampwork glass bead pictured above was created by Rose. You can see more of her glass beads in her web site gallery at www.beadshaper.com/gallery 

Monday, March 29, 2021

JEWELRY METALWORKING

Metal working means shaping metals into useful objects (artistic as well as functional). The earliest metalworking was probably from around 5000 BCE and the first metals were probably copper and gold. Copper is more abundant than gold, but copper usually needs to be refined from ore that is not pure copper, and gold occasionally can be found as pure nuggets. Later copper was alloyed with tin and other metals to make bronze which is stronger and more malleable. Even later copper was alloyed with zinc to make brass which is smoother than copper or bronze.

The copper cuff bracelet pictured above can be found at CAPTIVATING COPPER CUFF BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

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Saturday, March 27, 2021

CUFF BRACELETS


Cuff bracelets date back to ancient times when it was often worn by nobility as a sign of social status. Pharoahs were depicted wearing cuffs in ancient pictures. Romans wore cuffs. In the Western hemisphere, Mayan Kings wore metal cuffs.
The copper cuff bracelet with a lampwork glass heart shaped bead pictured above was handcrafted by the Beadshaper and can be found at
HEART BEAD ON COPPER CUFF (beadshaper.com)

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Friday, March 26, 2021

BRASS


Brass is a metal which is an alloy of copper and zinc with a bright yellowish color and a smooth low friction texture. Brass was probably first made around 500 BCE. It is used in making various items including musical instruments, plumbing, and jewelry.

You can find a brass bracelet at BRASS AND SILVER CUFF BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

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Tuesday, March 23, 2021

AMAZON WOMEN

The Amazon women in Greek mythology were supposed to be a community of women warriors who only kept men around for breeding. They were said to live at the southern coast of the Black Sea. Interestingly, archeological excavations of ancient ruins in that area has indicated that there were some women warriors among the people living in that area in ancient times.

You can find the cuff bracelet pictured above at AMAZON WOMAN COPPER CUFF BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

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Wednesday, March 17, 2021

BLACK LIVES MATTER

The Black Lives Matter movement protests racially motivated killing of Black Americans. Such killings in many cases have been facilitated by the gun anarchy that exists in our country. The movement began in 2013 after the murder of Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman and the subsequent acquittal of Zimmerman.

The glass pendant pictured above is named Black Lives Matter. The light blue flowers and green stems represent life, and the black background represents Black Americans. The pendant can be found at BLACK LIVES MATTER GLASS PENDANT WITH BAIL (beadshaper.com)

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Monday, March 15, 2021

TURQUOISE

 

The color turquoise is the color between blue and green. A stone with that color has been known since ancient times. The ancient Egyptians mined it in the Sinai desert. The ancient Persians and Chinese also used it. It has been used by the Indians of Mexico and the US Southwest since Pre-Columbian times. The present day name of turquoise came into use 4 centuries ago and comes from the French word for Turkish. The pendant bead pictured above has the color turquoise but is made of handcrafted lampwork glass. It can be found at TURQUOISE GARDEN GLASS PENDANT WITH BAIL (beadshaper.com)

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Tuesday, March 9, 2021

OCEAN AND LAKE STONES

Millions of years ago of years ago, the earth began as gases spun off from the sun which cooled to form a core. As the earth cooled further, it formed an outer crust on which we now live. From time to time, gases would punch up from the core to or near the surface (like in volcanoes) and cool into rock. This could occur on land or under the water. Rocks could then move for various reasons (like water motion or earth movement) and break up into stones. In various locations this might result in underwater stones in oceans, lakes, and rivers or pile up on coastal land because of waves or regression of water.

The stones in the necklace pictured above are reminiscent of stones that one might see under the water or piled up on coastal land. That necklace can be found on the Beadshaper website at OCEAN STONES NECKLACE - Necklaces (beadshaper.com)

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Sunday, March 7, 2021

NINE

The number 9 is more than 8 and less than 10. Nine is the square of 3. That means if you multiply 3 times 3 you get nine. Nine is the highest single digit number. In some forms of mysticism 9 has been called the number of magic, of completion, of wisdom, or of heaven. Nine represents Brahma in Hinduism. The ancient Romans wrote IX for nine. Roman numerals like IX are still used today to number chapters in books.

You can find the mysterious handcrafted glass pendant pictured above at NINE - Pendants and Focal Glass Beads (beadshaper.com)

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Friday, March 5, 2021

BARBARA

The name Barbara is of Geek origin and means “stranger.” It was popular for newborns in America in the first half of the 20th Century but has declined recently. It is still popular for newborns in Eastern Europe. Some famous Barbara celebrities are Barbara Walters (born 1929), Barbra Streisand (born 1942), Barbara Eden (born 1931), Barbara Hershey (born 1948), and Barbara Bach (born 1947). A recent Barbara is a Hungarian model named Barbara Palvin (born 1993).

You can see Barbara Bluefish on the Beadshaper website at BARBARA BLUEFISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants. (beadshaper.com)

You can see her sister, Brianna Bluefish, at BRIANNA BLUEFISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants. (beadshaper.com)

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Wednesday, March 3, 2021

CLEOPATRA

Cleopatra VII was part of the Ptolemy royal family of Egypt during Roman times. The Ptolemies were descendants of Macedonians who ruled Egypt after the death of Alexander the Great. Cleopatra ruled Egypt together with her father, later her brothers, and finally her son. She was known for her cleverness and beauty. She cemented her rule over Egypt by having an affair with Julius Caesar resulting in a son who became officially her co-ruler. After Caesar was assasinated, she had an affair with Marc Antony resulting in more sons. Marc Antony and Cleopatra fought a war with Augustus Caesar over the control of the Roman Empire. Marc Antony and Cleopatra lost the war and both independently committed suicide. The son of Caesar and Cleopatra was later killed by the Romans which ended the Ptolemaic dynasty. Egypt then was incorporated as a province in the Roman Empire.


You can visit Cleopatra Carp on the Beadshaper website at
CLEOPATRA CARP - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Monday, March 1, 2021

GRETA

The name Greta is the diminutive of Margareta and is of German and Scandinavian origin. It means pearl. Famous women with the name Greta include Greta Garbo who was a famous Swedish American movie star in the 1930s and 1940s. A more recent personality with the name Greta is Greta Thunberg, a Swedish environmental activist born in 2003;

You can find a Beadshaper Fashion Fish handcrafted lampwork glass bead named Greta at GRETA GREYFISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Saturday, February 27, 2021

OCTAVIA

The name Octavia is of Latin origin and means the eighth. It was used to name the eighth daughter in the days when large families were popular. A number of women in Roman noble families were named Octavia, for example the wife of the emperor Nero. Nero later divorced Octavia to marry his mistress Poppea.

You can find a Beadshaper Fashion Fish handcrafted lampwork glass bead named Octavia at OCTAVIA ORANGEFISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads (beadshaper.com)

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Friday, February 26, 2021

NAOMI

The name Naomi is of Hebrew origin meaning pleasant. Naomi in the Bible was an Israelite woman who migrated with her husband and son to Moab. While in Moab, Naomi’s son married a Moabite woman named Ruth. After that, Naomi’s husband and son died leaving both Naomi and Ruth widows. When Naomi decided to return to Israel, Ruth being loyal to her mother-in-law, offered to go to Israel with her saying the famous phrase “whither thou goest.” Ruth later became the grandmother of King David, and Naomi was his great grandmother.

You can find a Beadshaper Fashion Fish handcrafted lampwork glass bead named Naomi at Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants. (beadshaper.com)

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Thursday, February 25, 2021

GARDEN OF EDEN

The Garden of Eden is mentioned in the Book of Genesis in the Bible as well as elsewhere. It is described as an idyllic place where the first humans, Adam and Eve, lived with immortality until they were tempted to sin by eating the forbidden apple and then became mortal. There are various ideas about where Eden might have been although one could say there is no specific location if one considers the story of Eden to be allegorical rather than historical. The ancient Hebrews probably placed it somewhere east of Mesopotamia although that is not clear. In relatively recent times the Mormon religion, which is very North American centric, placed it in Missouri. Wherever the location or if there was a location, the story of Adam and Eve and their expulsion from Eden was a way for the ancients to explain human mortality, a problem that has bothered people from before the dawn of history and even today.

You can find the floral garden pendant bead pictured above at http://www.beadshaper.com/detail?item_id=43062&category_id=1764

Saturday, February 20, 2021

BRIANNA

The name Brianna is of Irish origin. It means strong, virtuous and honorable.

The fashion fish bead pictured above is named Brianna Bluefish and can be found on the Beadshaper web site at BRIANNA BLUEFISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Thursday, February 18, 2021

GOLDFISH

Goldfish are yellow and orange mutations of carp that have been bred for at least one thousand years, beginning in China because of their attractive color. At first they were kept in ponds and later in glass containers for better display. Eventually a law was made allowing only Chinese nobility to keep yellow goldfish because they were considered more regal. Commoners were only allowed the orange variety. Therefore, the orange ones remained more numerous. Eventually in the 17th Century goldfish were exported to Europe via Portuguese travelers. Later in the 19th Century goldfish became popular in the United States and have remained so today.

You can find Gilda Goldfish, a handcrafted lampwork glass bead created by Rose at GILDA GOLDFISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Beads (beadshaper.com)

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Wednesday, February 17, 2021

CRAFT GUILDS

Colegia in Ancient Rome were associations of craftsmen who did the same kind of work and banded together to promote their common interests. The colegia were precursors of the guilds that came later in Medieval Europe. With the fall of the Roman Empire, Europe went through the Dark Ages of the early Middle Ages. During the later Middle Ages there was a resurrection of cities and with it a resurrection of crafts. The craftsmen in the various crafts banded together to form guilds which promoted their various crafts. Guilds often supported their members by keeping out unwanted competition, taking care of the families of members when the member became ill or died, and setting qualifications for members. One became a member of a guild by being in the family of an established guild member and by going through steps of learning and maturity, first as an apprentice and over years working up to the level of master craftsman. One such guild was the glass makers of Venice who protected their method of making glass for centuries. The guilds were usually protected by the local king or other nobleman or by the governing body of a town. The guilds were ultimately replaced by the guilds, associations, and unions of today.

The elegant bracelet pictured above is an example of jewelry craft created by Rose. It can be found at REGAL BLUESTONE BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

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Tuesday, February 16, 2021

ZOE

Zoe is a name of Greek origin which means “life.” The name was used by Hellenized Jews in Alexandria in the third century (which at that time was a Greek city) as the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew Chava (Eve) or Chaya (feminine form of male name Chaim or word for life). One Empress of the Byzantine Empire in the 11th century was named Zoe. Zoe became popular in the English speaking world in the 19th Century and has remained popular since then.

You can find a Beadshaper Fashion Fish handcrafted lampwork glass bead named Zoe at  ZOE FASHION FISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Monday, February 15, 2021

VENUS

 

Venus in Roman mythology is the goddess of love and beauty. She is the Roman equivalent of the earlier Greek goddess, Aphrodite. According to Roman mythology, she is the daughter of Jupiter, the king of the gods, and the ancestor of Romulus, the founder of Rome. As the story goes, she was married to Vulcan, the god of craftsmanship who didn't pay enough attention to her because he was too busy working, so she had an affair with Mars, the god of war. It looked like those ancient Romans had the same frailties we see in some people today and attributed those same frailties to their gods and goddesses.

Venus has been the subject of many works of art, most notably the painting "The Birth of Venus" by Boticelli (1445-1510). The most famous sculpture bearing her name is the Venus de Milo. However that statue was actually made by an ancient Greek artist depicting Aphrodite, but the later Roman name has remained the more popular one.


You can see Venus Fashion Fish at
 VENUS FASHION FISH - Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

 

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Sunday, February 14, 2021

RING PHILOSOPHY

Although a ring can be adorned with any shape to enhance its beauty, the part that makes it a ring is the circle that fits on a finger. The ring shape has great philosophical significance in representing time and existence. If time were linear, one could ask what existed before the beginning of time and what will exist after the end of time? If time were circular, then there would be no beginning and no end.

The ring pictured above can be found at SILVER PEARL RING - (beadshaper.com)

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Saturday, February 13, 2021

BRENDA

The name Brenda is believed to be a feminine form of the Old Nordic name Bredr which means torch and sword. It dates back to the medieval time when the northern islands of Britain were ruled by Norse Vikings. It also can be a feminine form of the Gaelic (Irish) male name Brendan.

The Fashion Fish pictured above is named Brenda. You can find her at Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Friday, February 12, 2021

DELILAH

Delilah was the temptress who caused the downfall of Samson in the Book of Judges in the Bible. In the story of Samson and Delilah, Samson was a leader of the ancient Israelis who were at war with the neighboring Philistines. Samson was known for his great physical strength. He was in love with Delilah, a very sexy Philistine woman. The leaders of the Philistines offered Delilah money to find out the secret of Samson's strength. After repeated questioning, he finally told her that it was in his hair which he would never cut. So, while Samson was sleeping, she had her servant cut off Samson's hair, removing his great strength. The Philistines were then able to overpower him, capture him, and gauge out his eyes, making him blind. And, of course, Delilah received her monetary reward. During his captivity, Samson's hair started to grow back. Samson was taken to the Philistine temple so the Philistines could make a spectacle of their success at a big event. But Samson, having grown back some of his hair, regained enough strength to grab the weight bearing pillars of the Philistine temple and pull them down which caused the temple to collapse, killing Samson and all the Philistine leaders along with Delilah. 

The Fashion Fish pictured above is named Delilah. You can find her at DELILAH FASHION FISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Thursday, February 11, 2021

HELEN OF TROY

Helen of Troy was a mythological beautiful woman whose beauty and desirability resulted in the Trojan War. According to the story, Helen had numerous suitors but married Menelaus, the Greek king of Sparta. Paris, a Trojan Prince, desired Helen and abducted her, taking her to Troy. The story varies as to whether Helen went willingly. Menelaus gathered up a large number of Greek warriors, putting together a fleet which sailed to Troy in Asia Minor (modern day Turkey) resulting in a war. The result of the war was that the Greeks won and Helen was brought back to Sparta.

The Fashion Fish bead pictured above is named Helen of Troy. You can find her at HELEN OF TROY - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants (beadshaper.com)

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Wednesday, February 10, 2021

BATHSHEBA

Bathsheba in the Bible was the mistress and later wife of King David. According to the story, Bathsheba was the wife of Uriah, a soldier in King David's army. David was taken with Bathsheba's  beauty and had an affair with her resulting in a pregnancy. David tried to get Uriah to go home to Bathsheba and have relations with her so he would think the baby was his, but Uriah being a good soldier would not go home. So instead David had Uriah sent to the front line and, as David hoped, he was killed in battle. David then married Bathsheba. The baby later died, but eventually Bathsheba gave birth to Solomon who ultimately became the King of Israel after David died.

The Fashion Fish Bead pictured above is named for Bathsheba. You can find her at BATHSHEBA FASHION FISH - Fashion Fish Lampwork - Handcrafted Lampwork Glass Beads, Pendants, (beadshaper.com)

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Tuesday, February 9, 2021

FLOWERS IN FASHION

Adornment with flowers goes back to ancient times. The ancient Egyptians  depicted some of their gods as wearing plumed headdresses. The ancient Greeks and Romans wore flowers in their hair as individual flowers and in garlands, especially at weddings. The art of wearing flowers in the hair also is found in the cultures of India and Polynesia. Artifical flowers go back to ancient times and were mentioned in the Bible in the chapter concerning King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba. Flowers were used to decorate churches in the Middle Ages in Europe, natural flowers in the summer, artificial flowers made by nuns in the winter. Flower making for hats and clothing began as a commercial venture in France in the 18th Century and then spread to Germany. 

Millefiore is a technique of applying small thin flowers to glass beads, pendants, and other glass objects. This technique dates back to ancient Greece, Rome, and Phoenicia. It was perfected by the Venetians in their beadmaking beginning in the Middle Ages. The word millefiore means thousands of flowers.
Harvard's Botanical Museum in the 19th Century commissioned Leopold and Rudolph Blaschka in Germany to make glass plants and flowers for the purpose of teaching botany. This collection was made during the period of 1887 to 1939. It remains today as a classic collection of glass plant models and is known for its exactness. In recent times the making of glass beads in the shape of flowers has become very much in style.

You can see examples at www.beadshaper.com/gallery?category.

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Monday, February 8, 2021

BLING

The word bling can be used to describe bright, shiny, or flashy jewelry. The term began with rappers, probably beginning in the 1960s, although more so in the 1980s. Some believe it originated with the Ultrabrite toothpaste commercial which portrayed brightness of brushed teeeth with a visible flash and a bling sound. Other historians trace it back to the admiration for bright jewelry in gold producing areas of West Africa. Today it is still used to describe exciting attractive jewelry.

For many colorful bling beads and jewelry, see www.beadshaper.com/gallery

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Sunday, February 7, 2021

FUNCTIONAL AND ABSTRACT ART

Most human endeavors, including art, serve some function. The prehistoric pictograms found on rocks and caves show people and animals and tell a story. Medieval European paintings showed people and events concerning religion. In the periods following the Middle Ages portraits of people who could afford to commission them were painted as well as pictures of secular as well as religious scenes. The invention of the camera took away the function of the painting as a means of visiually recording people and events. But it also freed the artists from strict adherance to realism. First came the Impressionists whose drawings still contained realism but without strict adherance to color and form. Later, in the 20th Century, abstract art came on the scene, where a drawing was appreciated for its beauty without depicting anything or not looking to the casual eye like what it was depicting. Then the camera itself became art with more realism.

Jewelry, dishes, vessels, and other objects with a function other than art itself have been adorned with abstract art throughout the centuries going back to prehistoric times as well as with pictures of people, animals, and plants. Architecture serves the function of providing shelter but also can be art. Images have been carved into the walls of some buildings while others display their beauty abstractly.
Art must have some kind of beauty to be art. Beauty can be pretty or it can at times be a harsh beauty, but it should evoke an emotion of some kind other than its pure function.
See 
www.beadshaper.com/gallery for examples of handcrafted glass beads and jewelry art that are functional and often abstract.
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Saturday, February 6, 2021

BEAD CROCHET

 

The word crochet comes from the French word for hook. Crochet is a method of weaving strands of material into patterns. It differs from needlework in that crochet uses one hook and needlework uses 2 needles. The earliest crochet-like work probably goes back to ancient times when a finger was used instead of a hook. Crochet was definitely known to have been done in the Renaissance times and became especially popular in the 1800s continuing to present times. Classical crochet uses yarn or similar fabric strands. Crafters began crocheting beads onto bags and clothing in the 1800s using yarn and other classical crochet fabrics. Recently jewelry artists have begun using silver and other precious metals to crochet beads into necklaces, bracelets, and other jewelry.

An examples of bead crochet jewelry can be found at Princess Bead Crochet Necklace (beadshaper.com)

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Friday, February 5, 2021

WHITE

 

The color white is the complete presence of the color spectrum. It combines all the colors except black which is the absence of color. A white object appears white because it reflects all the light back to the eye (unlike a black object which absorbs all the light). Various cultures today and in the past have assigned various meanings to the color white. A white flag represents peace and surrender. In ancient Egypt, white was a color of authority. In many cultures white has represented holiness and purity. Hindu holy people wear white. White was the color of the gods of ancient Persia. Brides wear white in western cultures to denote virginity. In the Jewish religion, white is worn on the High Holy days to denote the sanctity of those days. White has denoted direction in some cultures, to the ancient Celtic people it represented south, to the Chinese west, and to some of the native Americans east.

You can see a handcrafted lampwork white glass bead pendant combined with various colors at lampwork glass pendant,(beadshaper.com)

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Thursday, February 4, 2021

VIKINGS IN RUSSIA

Did you know that the name Russian comes from Scandinavia? During the Middle Ages, the Viking influence extended eastward into what is now the Ukraine. A Viking tribe called the Russ took advantage of disagreement between various local Slavic tribes and established a Kingdom centered around Kiev which ultimately grew into the Russian Empire.

Rose has a number of examples of Viking Knit jewelry on her website. One beautiful example can be found at SILVER VIKING BLUE BEAD WHITE DOT BRACELET (beadshaper.com)

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Wednesday, February 3, 2021

FASHION IN ANCIENT GREECE

Fashion in ancient Greece varied according to location and time period. The Greeks liked loose fitting clothing. During the earlier ancient times, women draped fabric around them. In the late period, women started wearing clothing made of cut pieces of cloth that were sewn together.The fabrics used were mainly wool and linen. Wool was more popular in winter and linen in summer. Wealthy people wore finer linen dyed different colors. For footwear, people generally wore sandals outside and went bare foot inside. The poorest people usually went barefoot indoor and outdoor. Jewelry was especially popular with wealthy people. It was passed on from generation to generation because of it's cost. Hair styles varied from short to long. Long hair was often braided. Light skin color was popular because wealthy women stayed indoors and were therefore pale from avoiding the sun. So, face powder that made the face look pale was very popular. Red iron oxide paste was used for lipstick. Red powder was used to give the cheeks a blush.

The luxurious necklace pictured above looks like it might have been worn by an ancient Greek woman but was actually handcrafted in modern times by Rose. You can visit it at Treasured Turquoise Silver Necklace (beadshaper.com) .

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Tuesday, February 2, 2021

PURPLE

The color purple is a mixture of blue and red. The earliest purple dyes came from Phoenicia about 4000 years ago and were extracted from certain shell fish. The purple dyes were very expensive because it took many shell fish to make a small amount of dye. Therefore purple became the color of royalty in various empires including ancient Egypt, then Persia, and then Rome among others. During the Middle Ages it was used in the cloaks of the highest clergy in the Roman Catholic hierarchy. An English chemist named William Perkins in 1856 developed a method for making synthetic purple dye from coal tar. This discovery made  purple products relatively inexpensive and therefore available to common people. 

You can find the color purple in a lampwork glass bead handcrafted by the Beadshaper at   PURPLE RIPPLE HEART GLASS BEAD (beadshaper.com)

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Monday, February 1, 2021

FASHION IN ANCIENT EGYPT

Ancient Egyptian women were concerned with being fashionable. Clothing was made of light weight materials because of the warm climate. They usually used linen which is a cloth woven from the fibers of the flax plant. Linen came in various qualities. The nobility wore the finer more see through linen. The more coarse less expensive linen was worn by commoners. White linen was bleached by the sun. Other colors were produced with dyes. Women wore long tight gowns that were draped around their bodies, often pleated. Colorful jewelry was popular. Jewelry was worn as necklaces, collars, bracelets, in the hair, and on clothing. Footwear consisted of sandals.The sandals of the wealthy were made of leather. Poor people wore sandals made of less expensive materials or went barefoot. Cosmetics were popular in Egypt. Egyptian women were particularly known for their eye make-up. Perfumes were also popular. The fashions of ancient Egypt have inspired fashion over the many centuries since that time and continue to do so even today.

The necklace pictured above is not Egyptian. It was made by Rose. You can find it at ANCIENT EXOTIC PENDANT NECKLACE (beadshaper.com)

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Sunday, January 31, 2021

GIFT GIVING


 The custom of giving gifts goes back to prehistoric times. In the ancient world gifts were customarily given to kings and emperors by lesser nobles to show their loyalty. These gifts (also known as tributes) were often not voluntary. Gifts were often given to the gods in the form of sacrifices. Gift giving among people of equal stature was also done, but in those cases a reciprocal gift was considered appropriate. This might have been the beginning of the concept of bartering which ultimately led to the inventions of money and trade. Gift giving became institutionalized in the festivals of the Romans and continued to the present time.

You can find great gifts for any occasion at www.beadshaper.com/gallery .

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Saturday, January 30, 2021

CARNIVAL

Carnival is a holiday that goes back to the Middle Ages. It began in Italy and quickly spread to other Roman Catholic communities, first in Europe and then to Europe's colonies. In that way it became popular among Roman Catholic communities and other Christian communities around the world. It is a celebration before the period of Lent. Roman Catholics do not eat meat during Lent and temporarily give up other pleasures during that time. Carnival gives an opportunity to party to excess before the start of Lent. It involves wild music, dancing, and extravagant costumes. The word Carnival comes from Latin and means leaving meat. The most famous carnivals are those in Venice and Rio de Janeiro, but carnival occurs in many other cities as well. The Mardi Gras in New Orleans is an American example of Carnival.

The word carnival in the U.S.A. and Canada describes traveling amusement parks that go from city to city. The origin goes back to the traveling shows of the 19th Century. However the beginning of the modern carnival was the World Columbian Exposition in 1893 in Chicago where the idea of a carnival with rides began. Since then carnivals and amusement parks have been part of the North American culture.
See 
www.beadshaper.com/gallery

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