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Peruvian bead info
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Peruvian ceramic beads are famous worldwide with designs so intricate that many find it hard to believe that they have actually been HAND PAINTED.Sadly production of these wonderful clay beads are not as productive as they once were . Largely due to when the original clay source in the region of Pisac (the sacred valley) started to dry up. other reasons including global changes,coupled with the original skilled artist moving on to other professional careers and areas, and also cheaper copies made in the far east flooded the market.

The detail in many of these beads is exceptional and have been painted by the veteran artist from days gone by I am sure you will not find more detailed beads on the market today.


There are in general two types of bead available the Glazed and Unglazed (varnished) type generally only found in Pisac .Workshops can also be found in Lima although producing only the Glazed beads made in moulds. 


Production of these beads is very complex procedure and requires skill usually handed down from generation to generation. The Clay is mixed up to a paste and individually HAND ROLLED* into the required shapes, they are then placed onto a skewer and left to dry, after which they are then placed into a KILN for hardening. They are then removed and painting begins each artisan has a preferred way to paint, however the most common is leaving the bead on the skewer whilst the artist paints the designs. Once the paint has dried they are then coated with a varnish.

*(Although these days there are other less time consuming methods with the use of moulds)


The glazed procedure is similar to the unglazed except once painted the beads are then placed into a Kiln for a second firing leaving the bead with a harder glazed finish. 

etnico have been working closely with families in Peru for over 25 years and have selected the very best artisans to bring you this unique collection of Peruvian ceramic beads. each bead has been intricately hand painted and each bead has also been hand rolled in the traditional Peruvian way. We hope that you enjoy these classic beads .Unfortunately over the last few years this skill is being replaced with transfers which are placed on the bead, This is largely due to the influx of cheap beads on the market and people not wishing to pay that extra for the Peruvian bead, Many simply can not believe that these beads really have been hand painted, When you see the detail that these beads have it is easy to understand that .Over the years i have sat with these artisans in the back room of their house / workshop and helped paint and prepare the beads. And i can say that after an hour or two I am seeing double. and so you can only image how it would be to spend ALL DAY EVERY DAY sitting at the table painting. These guys really need respect they certainly deserve it.   

This is your opportunity to buy a piece of art from a fading industry

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Urubumba Valley

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