The earliest evidence of glass beads were found in central, east and west Africa dating back to 1000 CE; but Africa as a whole has always used beads in their daily lives to trade, various events, rites of passage and celebration. Waist beads are a symbolic adornment signifying femininity , signs of success and affluence as well as spiritual well being.
African beads have always been personal. Women of various ages would wear them under clothing and would customize them to their liking or life situation. They symbolize various meaning such as fertility, empowerment, virility, love , spirituality, desires and wisdom. In weddings or youth ceremonies they played a big part in seduction and drawing in the attention of the opposite sex.
As we all know, Africa is huge and rich with culture, born of the humongous variations of tribes and regions and how they related with each other for centuries through trade, migration and colonization. All these factors played a part in how certain traditions were passed down to generations or shared with other tribes and ethnicities. Color representation in waist beads is an example of this. It would help to identify tribe and ethnicity without even speaking a word. It was and is a language in itself.
Waist beads are for all women, all shapes and sizes. Women can customize them to their desire and needs and wants to reflect their path in life or just preference. Gems, shells and crystals were popular then are more popular now to a diverse population of women. Adding them to your waist beads convey positive energy and healing.
Ready to embrace the beauty of African waist beads? Check out our shop for a variety of beaded belly beads at affordable prices.