African Amber, Berber Strand 21 Inches Long with 29 Mostly Larger Beads


Regular price $175.00

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  • Strand of Berber Amber from Morocco, 21 inches long with 29 mostly larger beads. Bead sizes range from 28 to 35mm diameter
  • Only one available, but there are others in this Moroccan series. This strand, along with AFO-165 feels older to me than many of the others.
  • Highly valued, as it is all over west and north Africa, Amber has a special place in the Berber culture of Morocco's Atlas Mountains, were it is treasured for its beauty and and near-magical medicinal properties. Strands are traditionally given by a man to his wife upon marriage, and worn on special occasions thereafter.
  • Far less expensive than the antique African Amber from Mali and west Africa, these resin beads also have a greater range of colors, from dark red through to light amber, as well as more varied shapes, and sizes.
  • They have an individually handmade feel - more as if molded from a soft material than carved from a hard one - and I'm inclined to believe the trader I bought them from, who says that they are locally made. I haven't seen anything quite like them in any of the other amber-loving regions of the world I visit.
  • Transparency varies from bead to bead, as do shapes, which are generally oblate, but far less uniform, and more "organic" than the African Amber from Mali and most faux versions
  • Back in the early 1970's when I was last in Morocco I saw Mali style African Amber and some obvious plastic imitations in Berber necklaces, along with some real copal. 
  • The strands I'm offering here seem to be a somewhat more recent iteration of the the flamboyant Berber jewelry that has endured for centuries, and shows no signs of fading away. I hope to learn more when I revisit Morocco this fall.
  • Large African beads as home decor accents is a trend I'm seeing more and more, and nothing lights up a room like a strand of these snaking across a coffee table or hanging on a wall....add a stack of books about African art, a hammered brass bowl, and maybe a plant...Whatever you do with them enjoy!