Delicate Murano Glass Bead with Hearts Pattern

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blue glass heart beadIf you are looking for a love token that’s just a little bit different, why not go for an exquisite glass bead to add to a charm bracelet or necklace? This bead is made from Murano glass with a simple wreath of blue and green hearts and is lined with a solid sterling silver tube for strength and longevity.

Quite small and delicate, it measures 7mm across and 14 mm high with a 4.5mm hole at the core. This heart bead is great value at $6.97 discounted from $24.99 on Amazon. Beads Hunter Jewelry Blue Wreath of Hearts Love Lasts Forever Murano Glass Bead with Solid Sterling Silver Tube .925 Stamped Wjqgb021

Fairtrade Heart Bracelet of Recycled Paper Beads

Heart bracelet from recycled paper beadsSuch a pretty bracelet with its colorful beads and wire heart detail, that it hardly needs the added incentive that it’s also about as eco-friendly as it gets.

The beads are hand-made from recycled paper sealed with non-toxic lacquer, the wire is re-purposed, and the whole thing is made in a Fairtrade project by women in Kenya and Uganda. Beyond that for each bracelet purchased a donation goes to a Children’s Hospital in Nairobi, Kenya. The ultimate in feel-good green living!

It would make a great little Christmas gift, perfect as a stocking stuffer or buy it for yourself. I’m tempted!

Buy directly from Acacia Creations for $14.50.

or if you prefer buying through Amazon, the same Recycled Paper Multi-Colored Heart Bead Bracelet is available there for $23.99.

Felt Heart Decorations from South Africa

Heartfelt- heart decorationsSimple, elegant, bright and cheerful these heart decorations are exactly what I’d make myself for a friend’s Christmas present. Hand-made by the ladies of the Heartfelt project, they are full of love, just as if you’d made them yourself  – giving the extra the joy of a hand-made gift.

To tell the truth, I’m a little nose out of joint here, as Heartfelt was the name I’d picked in the unlikely event that I actually got around to creating a business out of my own felt sewing projects. I never did and they have, so I wish them very well with their initiative and am glad that they have so many lovely products to be worthy of such a brilliant name!

Heartfelt are a community initiative in South Africa, creating employment in a poor rural area and bringing new skills to the community. They create all sorts of felt products besides these (think magnets, keyrings, toys and mobiles) so go and browse for inspiration if you are looking for a special and individual gift. The website has a proper shopping cart and converts prices into several international currencies, so makes online shopping very easy – a welcome change from so many small sites and a sign of an efficient business!

These felt heart decorations cost R29 (about $3.50)

African Beaded Heart Greeting Cards

Bead Heart greeting card from Rootz CreationsRootz Creations makes these wonderful greetings cards with a little beaded symbol in the front, framed by traditional iShweshwe African fabrics. They come in a huge range of designs including African animals and flowers.

This little pink beaded heart  on a red background, isn’t really my favourite colour combination, but a batch of these could be made to order in any colour combo you like, so browse the rest of the page and order a customised set.

Rootz is a work creation project for women in the Thousand Hills area of KwaZulu Natal and makes a real difference to the lives of families in the area. They sell through various upmarket gift and craft shops including the Shop at the Top of Table Mountain in Cape Town. Their website isn’t strictly an online shopping site and doesn’t display the prices, but you can put in an order or an enquiry from the site and I’d hate to let you miss out on their gorgeous productsrootz-greetings-cards

Vintage Glass Heart Beads

Japanese glass heart beadsThere is something about these vintage glass heart beads that you just don’t get from brand new ones however beautiful. They have a soft presence, a patina that speaks a little of their history.

They are Japanese in white glass with dots of colour and a metal loop to make them into pendants.

The glass heart beads cost $4 for two from The Sample Room on Etsy.

Venetian Glass Heart Earrings

Venetian Glass Heart EarringsToo rich and gorgeous to resist – these Venetian glass heart earrings just have to go with soft velvets, rich brocades, silks and satins… or just with a little black dress in sophisticated style.

They are hand-made with Venetian glass heart beads that have gold foil at the core and colored glass patterns in the next layer, set off by red Swarovski crystals and gold wire – jewels fit for  a princess.

As each heart bead is hand-made no two are the same. Each bead measures 13mm / ½ inch across and the earrings are light and comfortable to wear.

Heart Earrings cost $ 19.50 from Helen’s Adornments on Etsy

Pretty Blown Glass Heart Beads

blown glass heart shaped beadsPretty, hand-made, affordable and individual, these blown glass beads are full of possibilities: as little Valentine’s gifts for kids, craft materials to make your own heart jewelry, Valentine’s party favors , the list is as long as your imagination!

The heart beads measure 16mm or 2/3 inch across and come in packs of 5. With the feel of Venetian glass their rich swirls of colour and gold are perfect for making inexpensive gifts that don’t look cheap!

If you are giving them to your kids to give out at school, just make sure that their friends know they are glass beads not candy! Perhaps it would be a good idea to string each one onto red ribbon or gold thread to make little pendants and avoid confusion!

16mm Red with Gold Foil Small Heart Blown Glass Beadspacket of 5 beads costs $3.99 from Goody Beads through Amazon

Bead Heart Cover One Year Diary

one year diary with bead heart coverIf you’re looking for a gift that a teenage girl will treasure, how about this one-year diary with rich heart design bejeweled  cover?

The gorgeous colors and design of the diary add warmth and importance to the secret thoughts and desires she might write inside its covers and two keys keep the contents private  (note to moms – it’s not OK to keep the second key for yourself, however tempting!!).

It’s made by CR Gibson who produce quality stationery and measures 7 x 5 inches with dated pages, 2 days to  a page. The diary matches this beaded heart notebook, so they could both be given as a set.

C.R. Gibson Bejeweled Heart One Year Diary (D1-7822) costs $14.10  from Amazon

Beaded Heart Notepad

Beaded heart notepadI know several little girls who would love to find this gorgeous heart notepad in their Christmas stockings… and plenty of bigger girls who would also enjoy it as a thoughtful gift.

Made by CR Gibson, who specialize in quality stationery, it has a beautiful beaded cover that makes me think of Eastern maharajahs and opulence.

It’s only 4.5 x 3.5 inches in size, so is perfect to tuck into a purse, to capture any inspirational thoughts during the day, or even to scribble love notes upon! With 100 blank pages this heart notepad is functional as well as decorative and it is affordable enough to treat yourself, if you don’t think Santa will oblige!

C.R. Gibson Bejeweled Heart Die-Cut Notepad (NP-7822) costs $6.56 from Amazon

Bead Heart Keychain

bead-heart-keychainThere is something appealing about the intricate and detailed work that goes into beading. It conjures up visions of careful hand work, created with love… and that’s what you want for a special gift for your loved one – something that has love in its fabric.

This bead heart comes from Streetwires in Cape Town, South Africa, a group of artisans working with beads and wire to create everything from small bead pieces to huge works of bead art.

This bead heart doesn’t seem to be currently available from their US stockist, Global Goods Partners (though they do have some other gorgeous bead keychains, ornaments and earrings). It would be worth enquiring from them whether they can get hold of some heart keychains for you, or else place an order directly with Streetwires, though they may need you to order a certain minimum amount.

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