Tribal Inspiration for Jewelry

by Christine Rehkop.
(Ashland, MO)

Tribal Dance Necklace by Christine Rehkop  - featured on Jewelry Making Journal

Tribal Dance Necklace

I recently visited Branson, MO with friends, and found some wonderful vintage Peruvian beads that inspired me.

For the 1st piece, I used the Peruvian beads with some natural coral, dyed Howlite and silver accents, all strung on fine leather.

Although the photo pictures a wolf charm, I swapped that out for a turquoise tassel.

The 2nd necklace also inspired a “native” theme.

Tribal Inspiration for Jewelry by Christine Rehkop  - featured on Jewelry Making Journal

Along with the pretty black and white beads, I used silver Czech glass dagger beads, more dyed Howlite and silver accents, again strung on fine leather.

Christine Rehkop
Chris’ Closet

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  • Christine, I love Peruvian beads too! They were my very first bead stash when I first started out. I love how you’ve designed around the Peruvian beads here. Great designs and color palettes!

  • Swun Kou says:

    Love them too, both beads and designs.

  • Dianne Haselfeld says:

    Love the designs and colors. I have wanted to use leather in my jewelry making but have struggled with types and sizes. Can you tell me where you found leather that is so thin but strong enough to string these beads?

  • Christine Rehkop says:

    Thank you ladies for your wonderful comments! I managed to find other vintage Peruvian beads, can’t wait to create more new designs soon.

    Dianne H. – has a good selection of leather cord as fine as .5mm.

  • Rosanne Moore says:

    Thank you for reminding me of my Peruvian Pisac bead stash! I found the first ones about thirty years ago in a Memphis flea market. The internet has made it much easier to find sources and information about them. Most recently I have bought from Fire Mountain and an eBay seller who wrote a guide to how they are made (although the link didn’t work when I just checked). I haven’t done a bead cost comparison, but a lot of web sites are selling them. I noticed that the waxed cotton cord I used on my earliest large-bead necklaces cut a groove in the hole opening; if a bead is fired in an electric kiln the clay will probably be harder. I also found a very few Chinese blue/white and brown/white porcelain beads which copied the Peruvian motifs. Currently I like to use the smaller Pisacs to make myself quick stretch bracelets mixed with Czech glass, although bracelets can take a beating and the ceramic beads might crack.

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