This is a 33" strand of imitation amber beads from Mauritania. These types of beads were made in Germany from Phenolic resin and were traded into Africa, generally ending up in Mauritania and Niger. The best part about this old plastic is the way it picks up a shine as it is worn -- and these beads are quite beautiful. The beads feature decorative holes through the center, making them especially interesting to design with. Women in Mauritania traditionally weave these beads into their hair.
To give a sense of size, the smallest bead on the strand measures 16/17 mm (diam.) x 10 mm (depth). The largest bead measures 35/33 mm x 18.5 mm.
Beautiful strand of "pillow amber" beads from Mali. This lovely strand features a variety of...