Wood beads have been considered personal favorites by many jewelry enthusiasts. For one thing, the organic appeal of wood beads sparks their creativity. For another, they bring up ancestral memories and look great when paired with other natural materials.
In this article, we highlighted the types of natural wood beads that come from the Philippines. These beads are made from local trees, cut and polished, and shaped to perfection.
Magkuno. Known in the Philippines as the ironwood, Magkuno is considered a very hard tropical wood and is the hardest wood in the world. The beads are in rich, chocolate brown tones — perfect for bold designs. They are hard yet have a super smooth finish with a nice wood grain.
Palmwood. New to palmwood beads? These beads are cut from one of the few varieties of palm trees including coconut and date palms. The wood has a lovely, parallel black grain markings. One look and you’ll have the impression that the beads are decorated with a paintbrush.
Patikan. Patikan is a particular variety of hard palmwood. The features have dark markings of palmwood. The wood becomes darker as the tree ages. These beads are great when creating men’s jewelry.
Graywood. Lightweight and has a smooth finish with a tight wood grain, graywood beads are made from the Philippine Kunawom Tree. Its scientific name is Sporobolus Vaginiflorus. When exposed to light and heat, the beads turn to a subtle, smoky gray sheen. If you want to incorporate more neutral tones to your creations, graywood is your best bet as its tone is subdued and lets other brightly colored components shine. Keep in mind that the holes in the beads are a bit smaller compared to other wood beads so you need to be careful when choosing the size of the cord.
Bayong. Bayong is durable and long wearing. Most beaders prefer Bayong because of its sturdy quality. Its natural color is a warm-red brown and features a fantastic and vivid wood grain pattern. When the beads are exposed to the light, you may see a shoft sheen from the wood.
Did You Know?
The largest wood bead is actually lighter than a gemstone bead of the same size. As such, wood beads are great additions to a design when you want to add visual weight but without the extra weight. Since wood beads come in different colors, they look fantastic when paired with metals. You can also try pairing them with bones, shells, and other natural materials to boost their organic appeal.
The great thing about wood beads is that plenty of them have big holes so they are not only great for creating jewelry but also, for crocheting, macrame, and other artsy projects.
We hope you learned a thing or two about wood beads in this article. Stay tuned for part 2!