Bombona: Tagua’s Spunky Cousin

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Bombona also known as Pambil, comes from the Iriartea palms in South and Central America. A cousin to Tagua, Pambil seeds also come from palm trees in the rain-forests of Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, and Columbia. In fact, native tribes of the Amazon basin manufacture lances, bows and even blowpipes from pambil.

Iriartea

You can also eat the palm heart of this species. The palm heart is the soft section at the bottom of a new leaf. The fruit of this species feeds many animal species which contributes to spread the seeds. Furthermore, Bombona harvesting is a source of industry for the many of the indigenous people of South America, providing a source of income for many families.

Harvesting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Like Tagua nuts but smaller, Bombona resemble brains, with color and texture variations that add visual interest and depth, especially when dyed. Additionally, Bombona or Pambil are super light weight, despite how dense they appear.

One of the most interesting features of this seed bead is it’s unique texture and shape. In fact, no two beads are exactly alike, as each seed displays subtle variations in size, texture, and color, creating pieces as unique as the wearer.

 

Hot Pink Bombona BeadsNatural White Bombona Beads

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These beads are great for statement necklaces that show your beauty and “brains.” Not to mention the ecological savvy that comes from knowing where your jewelry comes from and how it’s made. So, be bold, be different, ‘bead’ you!

Pachiuba necklace

 


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Need a Glamorous Clutch? DIY

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Are you looking for the perfect little clutch or handbag? Tired of combing the stores for something unique and glamorous that won’t break the bank? What if you could make the perfect bag yourself? All you need is the right tools, some imagination, and the ability to sew.clutch

Tools:

  • Fabric for the outside of the bag
  • Fabric for the lining
  • Metal Clasp and/or chain
  • A Rotary Cutter
  • Grid Ruler
  • Iron
  • Sewing machine
  • metal clutch frame (etsy)
  • double sided fusible interfacing
  • Coordinating thread
  • Fabric Glue
  • Fusible Fleece

Suggested Fabric and Chains

If you like the look of the above clutch, you might like using our fish leather and chains.

chain 2chainblue fish leather

 

 

 

 

Directions

1: Start by cutting 13-by-13 1/2-inch pieces from outer fabric, lining fabric, and heavyweight fusible stabilizer. Cut a 10 1/2-by-13-inch piece of fusible fleece. Fuse heavyweight stabilizer to wrong side of outer fabric using your iron, then fuse fleece to center of stabilized side of fabric.

2: Fold right sides of outer and lining fabrics together, sew 1/2-inch seams along both 13 1/2-inch edges.

3: Turn sewn pieces so right sides are facing out, and press seams flat with your iron.

4: Fold in half, matching seams at top, with lining on inside. Sew a 1/4-inch seam on outside raw edges, then trim seam allowances to 1/8 inch and snip in at the corners. Turn again, so outside fabric is on the inside. Sew 1/4-inch seam along edges, creating a finished French seam, then turn right side out.

5: Fold the corners down; mark and sew a 2-inch gusset on each. Trim corner to 1/8 inch. Turn again so lining faces out; sew a 1/4-inch seam along gussets to finish seams. Turn the purse skin right side out.

6: Apply a bead of fabric glue to metal frame. Center over top seam, carefully insert fabric in metal frame, and secure in place with tape. Allow glue to set for several hours.

7: Remove tape, tuck outside corners behind frame, and snap closed.

8: To add a chain, you can either sew the chain directly into the lining at the corners, or you can sew in a jump ringlobster claw and use a lobster claw to adhere the chain to the ring, so that the chain is removable.

 Jump ringsFinished Product

The finished product is a cool new clutch similar to the one pictured above. With practice and patience you can create a whole new handbag wardrobe to accompany any outfit. You can customize your handbag with gems, beads, or any other embellishment you choose. The only limit is your own imagination.


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Boho Headpieces: DIY

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Do you love the romantic draping look of a headpiece? Are you envious of Boho princesses HairChain1like Nicole Richie? Did you know that those ornate headpieces are easy to make yourself? That’s right, you can create your own custom headpieces, using chains, charms, and beads.

layered tassled chain-headpiece

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get the Look

Here are some sample items to help you get the look. First you’ll need chain for the diameter of your head and a piece of chain for the middle part, as well as any additional chain for layering.

These chains work well layered or by themselves as a head piece. gold rhinestonegun metal chaingold rolo chain

The first step is wrapping the chain around your head leaving one or two extra links for draping. Then measure from the front of the chain to the back of the chain vertically for the center piece. Draping chains requires leaving a few more links in the chain each time you add a layer. Use simple ring jumpers to adhere each layer.

jump rings

Beading

If you’re looking to make your headpiece beaded, you’ll need some long head and eye pieces for cascading beads. These will allow you to add cascading beads and a centerpiece for your head piece.

Antique brass head pingun metal eye pin

Next you’ll need some beautiful new beads. Any beads from Tagua to glass will be beautiful additions, and the only limitation is your own imagination. Here are some great bead suggestions to get you started.

tagua pendant turquoisemoon light rounds

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re feeling particularly edgy you might try our skull beads .

skull beads

Center Piece

Finally, you’ll want to work on your centerpiece. Not all headpieces have centerpieces, but if you want one, you’ll need a great pendant or large bead or coupler. Here are a few suggestions.

coconut blue web pendantCopper leaf charmNunn-design bird connector

 

 

 

 

Headpiece Heaven

With practice, and the right materials you can make your own fabulous Boho headpieces like the great headpieces worn by celebrities and made by jewelry design houses like House of  Harlow.

Vanessa Hudginsbeautiful headpiece

 


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Acai the Wonder Fruit

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acai-berry-branched-paniclesAcai pronounced Ah-sī-ˈē, is known world wide for it’s antioxidant rich fruit, which grows on acai palms (Euterpe oleracea) in Central and South America. Acai got its name from the Portuguese adaptation of the Tupian word ïwaca’i, meaning fruit that cries or expels water. The fruit grows in panicles (hanging branched bunches) of 500-900 berries, making acai a plentiful, and renewable resource for indigenous people in the Amazon.

Not Just for Fruit

What many people don’t know is that acai berries have seeds andraw beads those seeds make excellent beads. The beads that come from acai average between 6-8mm in diameter. Once harvested, the seeds are drilled and polished. Because these beads are organic and natural, size and shape varies from seed to seed, making each acai bead slightly different, with beautiful variations that make each bead unique.

Good for Your Wardrobe, and the Economy

Acai beads are all hand made and hand drilled, by skilled artisans, creating many jobs due to the high demand of acai world wide. In fact, harvesting and preparing acai beads is a source of industry for the many of the indigenous people of South America, providing a source of income for many families, strengthening the economic prosperity of generations to come.

industry

Thus, it’s clear to see why acai beads are truly special.

bright acai beads


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What’s Your Style

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Style is a choice. It is a reflection of who we are and what we think. We use fashion and style to define ourselves, and our own unique personalities. Some of us are Bohemian flower children, others are classically beautiful, some are sporty, some are preppy, and some of us are just plain wild. Whatever your style, there’s a designer who represents you, and a bead style or leather that suits you.

Bohemian Rhapsody bohemian-clothes

Bohemian style is hippie chic. Prints, flowers, and flowing fabrics represent the boho lifestyle. Inspired by the fashion of the 1960′s and 1970′s as well as the Romani or Gypsy culture, clothing is typically made from natural fibers, and is made for comfort and movement. Outfits typically include layering, loose peasant blouses, maxi dresses, and headbands or hair ornaments. The key words when talking about Bohemian style are versatile, relaxed and natural. Designers like Nicole Richie and Nicole Miller and stylists like Rachel Zoe represent this style. Accessories are also worn in layers and include, chains coins, beads, leather, feathers, bone, and wood. Get the look with necklaceour chains, beads, and fasteners, and check out our scarves.

 

 

 

chain 2bamboo beadsred beads

 

 

 

 

 

silhouette-n-17_look_femme_details

Classic Beauty

When one thinks of classic beauty women like Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly come to mind. This style is elegant and feminine. Designer Christian Dior captures Classic Beauty with his structured pieces in silhouettes that magnify the feminine shape and define the waist. Classic beauty is glamorous, but in a way that says beauty not flash. Accessories are simple and often make a statement.

classic beauty

Get the look with our Tagua Nut beads and Faux Suede cords, and create the statement piece of your dreams.

 

 

cord

clasps

White Tagua Nut Beads

 

luxe-sport-at-Alexander-Wang

 

 

 

 

 

Sporty Shorty

The sporty look is active, and on-the-go. These women aren’t afraid to sweat and need clothes that move with them, and their active lifestyle. Designers like  Tommy Hilfiger, and Alexander Wang offer sporty style. The sporty woman is a little bit tom-boy and a whole of fierce. Accessories are simple and don’t impede the sporty woman’s ability to get moving. Swapping out sweat bands for a leather cuff work well for the sporty woman.

leather cuff

 

 

 

 

 

Get the look with one of our killer leather straps and fasteners.

Leather straps

silver buttons

 

 

 

 

 

Fall-2011-New-York-Fashion-Week-Betsey-JohnsonWild Child

The wild child likes to take risks with fashion, and isn’t afraid of animal prints and neon colors in various fabrics including fur, polyester, leather, and even tulle. Creative goddess and designer Betsy Johnson personifies the wild child look.

In terms of accessories anything goes from an unusual hat to a bold piece of jewelry, to spikes. The wild child is truly avant-garde, and isn’t afraid to experiment with colors, textures, and beading.

 

 

This amazing piece by Sherry Hutchison Serafini exemplifies the wild child sense of style. Get the look using our chains and fish leather.

eye piecefishchain

 

 

 

 

 

What’s your sense of style? Are you Bohemian, Classic, Sporty, or Wild?


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Extra, Extra, Read All About Us in Jewelry Stringing Magazine

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Like many of you, we at Nature Beads love our beading and jewelry design magazines, drawing inspiration from the colorful beadwork and artistic designs within their glossy pages. So we are honored to have some of our unique products featured in the Summer 2013 issue of Jewelry Stringing Magazine!

Jewelry Stringing Magazine

Among the items featured are our distressed and hand tooled dyed flat leathers on page 43. We’ve also got our faux suede leather laces in blue, pink, and green, on page 53. All, our leather is 100% made in Central Florida, USA and we totally believe in the circle of business. Our leather is ECO Friendly, vegetable tanned and dyed with natural dyes is CHROME FREE. Additionally, our faux suede cord is very soft, flexible and the dye does not come off in your hands by touch. You can find each of these pieces on our website at www.naturebeads.com. Jewelry Stringing Magazine ‘s Summer 2013 edition is on stands through August 19, 2013.

 

Items on Page 43 “Get the Look” include our Distressed and Hand-tooled Dyed Flat Leather Straps.

Two Toned Blue Flat Leather Straps 10mm Hand Tooled 10mm FLAT LEATHER, Hand Cut & Hand Dyed

 

 

 

 

 

Items on page 53 “Get the Look” include our Faux Suede Leather Laces.

Green Suede Leather laces

Guava Suede leather lacesBlue Suede Leather Laces

 

 

 

 

 

So, make sure you pick up your copy of Jewelry Stringing Magazine to get in on all the latest beading and jewelry design news, and be sure to check us out on their “Get the Look” sections.


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Gaga for a Man in a Suit, Gucci does Men’s Wear Right

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We at Nature Beads know a thing or two about fashion and style. Both Men and Women deserve to look their best. We pull inspiration from the great designers including Lanvin, Gucci, Versace, etc. and we are obsessed with Gucci’s fall collection for men. Their use of color for men this fall includes muted shades of green and cranberry reds in fabulous coats and jackets that really make these men pop on the runway.

milan-fashion-week-gucci-fall-2013-mens-collection-17

beadsTell me this look isn’t smoking hot! We love the fur trim, the lush shades of red, and the slim fit of the grey pants. We’re so inspired by this look that we’ve already begun using these color palates in our beads

We’re also loving Gucci’s suits for Fall 2013. Mixing textures is big this fall, mixing wool with satin and suede with fur. We love the textures and slim cut of this suit, with its impeccable tailoring that really fits and flatters. We’re inspired by textures too, and are loving our fish leather products right now.

milan-fashion-week-gucci-fall-2013-mens-collection-37Blue grey fish leather

 

 

 

 

Let’s talk fashion. What designers get your motor running? Tell us what you think. Are you as gaga for a man in a suit as we are?


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Who is Lilian Weeks and Why Choose Nature Beads

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TAGUA NUTS SOFT-3There are many jewelry component companies in the US, who ship natural beads from around the world but none understand the products and ecology behind them quite like Nature Beads founder Lilian Weeks. Having studied biology and aquaculture in college, earning a degree and even teaching local fishermen responsible fishing methods, Lilian understands the need to protect and preserve natural ecosystems. A born explorer and lover of adventure Lilian grew up in the Amazon, and developed relationships with local artisans, while in college doing research. Her fascination with native artwork and jewelry grew as she encountered unique adornments made from natural substances such as wood, seeds, feathers, and even fish scales.

From Hobby to Career

Needing some extra money for books, college expenses, and of course SHOES while studying, Lilian ACAI BEADS-1began making and selling her own jewelry to friends. Through trial and error Lilian developed her own methods, creating pieces that came from the inspiration gained from her surroundings and the indigenous people she met in local villages. This ignited a passion that would lead to the creation of Nature Beads. But first, Lilian would meet her Prince Charming.

New Beginnings

In 2006 Lilian met David, fell in love, and moved to the United States, to begin her new life as a jewelry designer and business owner. Bringing native beads, tools, and jewelry, Lilian started her website in 2006 experiencing slow growth initially. However, designers soon discovered Lilian’s unique products, loving her South American influenced jewelry components including Tagua nuts, Tagua beads, Tagua slices, Acai beads, and sea glass pendants, among other unique product lines like fish leather.

fishleather banglesFrom Humble Beginnings to Nature Beads Owner

In March 2008, Lilian was featured in Bead Style Magazine, and has been in many other magazines since. Today Nature Beads inspires jewelry designers and artists to create the custom designs of their dreams, using naturally sourced products from artisans and craftsmen and women that Lilian maintains relationships with abroad. In fact, Lilian seeks out the finest Tagua and Acai from those artisans she knows and trusts to provide the highest quality beads and jewelry components on the market. Thus, Nature Beads continues to grow, serving our artists and friends with pride because we know our stuff, and we provide the best beads in the industry. We continue to grow and look forward to the chance to serve all your natural jewelry and beading needs.


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We LOVE Fashion Fall 2013

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At Nature Beads, we LOVE fashion! We are obsessed with what’s hot, and what you’re going to want to wear, so today we’re letting you in on the hot colors for fall 2013. Designers are loving shades of grey, ivory, nude, khaki, and chocolate for neutral bases this year. We’re loving the contrast of vibrant colored beads and pendants in shades like cranberry, peacock blue, and even orange against these neutrals for a pop of color.

IvoryGreyFashion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

chocolate brown

Designers are also using color this year in unexpected ways. Muted shades of green and pink are still hot, while vibrant colors such as yellow, fuchsia, tangerine, cobalt, and peacock are on trend for this fall. We like the idea of mixing contrasting colors using our accessories for visual interest like wearing  rust colored beads with our fuchsia outfits.

hmyellowblazerOrange-and-Purple-4

peacock blue


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Can’t Get Enough of that Beautiful Stuff

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We can’t overstate the awesome talent that is Sherry Hutchison Serafini! Her designs are not only beautiful, but original, unique, and incredibly special. With beads, chains, and fish leather, her creations awe and inspire. Isn’t this necklace dreamy?

fish leather


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