Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Chevron Beads

I got me some chevron beads!  I first found out about chevron beads when I was researching African trade beads. It's a type of bead that was used in the African trade market. 


Here are some Wikipedia facts about them.  The first chevron beads were made towards the end of the 15th century. Most of the Venetian chevron beads made for export to West Africa and to the Americas have layers in red, blue, and white.  Venetian chevron beads have been traded throughout the world, most heavily in West Africa, where they were first introduced by Dutch merchants.  Chevron beads are very popular collectors' items and they are still highly valued in present day West Africa, where they continue to be worn for prestige and ceremonial purposes, and occasionally buried with the dead.

I found the beads in the antique store where I got those marbles that I paid $30 for that are actually worth 99 cents.  But let's not talk about the marbles.  Ack.

Anyway, the store is a hoarder's delight.  It is jam packed full of stuff . . . left and right, up and down, every nook and cranny is just loaded.  You could stand in one spot, without even moving from that spot and spend half an hour just looking. 

I spotted the chevron beads in a small cup in the front of a display case.  I asked George, the owner, if I could see them.  Let me tell you something about George.  In a word, he is gruff.  He does not take kindly to going out of his way to retrieve something for you for nothing.  He says,  "Are you gonna buy some or are you just gonna look at um?" So I say, "Well, how much are they?"  He says, "25 cents to $2 each bead, depending on the bead." I say, "I'm gonna buy some." 

After making his way around piles of stuff to get to the back of the display case, I see his arm snaking through to the front to grab my cup.  He hands it to me.  Yay!!  I pick out what I think is about $20 worth and show them to him.  He counts them and says something like, "$400."  Whaaaa???   I say, "Didn't you say they were around 25 cents each?"  He says, "Oh no, not these beads.  These beads are special. They're $5 each."  Oh Gawd.  So, I picked out four and say, "Okay, I can only get these then."   They're tiny.  But I really like um.

You can check out similar beads on eBay here.


Erick said...

Wow, nice beads. Kind of expensive though.

jalna said...

I agree Erick. But they're old, that's mostly why I like um.