“The Revival of Love Beads: Creating Bohemian Jewelry for Today’s Spirit”

Bracelets made with Love Beads

In today’s era of fast-paced trends and ever-evolving styles, there’s a charming resurgence brewing in the world of jewelry—the reawakening of love beads. These colorful, symbolic glass beads, once emblematic of the free-spirited 1960s and 70s, are making a captivating comeback, sparking interest among vintage jewelry enthusiasts and passionate crafters alike.

Love beads weren’t just accessories; they encapsulated an entire cultural movement—a celebration of free love and a bohemian ethos. Today, they’re not just about nostalgia; they’re a symbol of counterculture and self-expression, appealing to the free-spirited souls eager to infuse their style with a touch of history and meaning.

For those enamored with the bohemian vibe and seeking to evoke the spirit of the peace movement, this post dives deep into the world of love bead jewelry. From selecting these beads with intention to crafting romantic pieces and exploring the profound significance behind these colorful treasures, we’ll journey through the art, history, and techniques that define this unique craft. Whether you’re a seasoned jewelry maker or a beginner seeking to infuse your style with a hint of the past, this post is a guide to embracing vintage love beads or the love bead look and channeling their essence into contemporary necklaces, bracelets, anklets, chokers, & belts.

Crafting Romance with Beads

Love beads just have a way of sparkin’ romance, you know? When I string together those colorful glass globes, I can’t help but feel the flower power. It takes me back to a time when free spirits wore their hearts on handmade hemp chokers, before the internet hooked everyone to their phones. 

Nowadays we’re all so disconnected, swiping left and right for love. But vintage love beads represent a time when people weren’t afraid to wear their feelings. The hippies used to gift these love bead necklaces to their lovers – can you imagine a more thoughtful present? Each bead hand-picked and threaded by your sweetheart? Talk about crafting romance!

I think we could use some of that analog affection today. I carefully choose beads with each customer’s aura in mind, then accent them with charms that symbolize what they want to attract. Be it luck, health, fortune or friendship. My pieces aim to inspire old school romance. Maybe they’ll even inspire someone to craft their own loving bead gift! Love beads are having a revival, and I couldn’t be more thrilled! 

Selecting meaningful beads and colors

  • I handpick each glass bead to create harmony and symbolize the wearer’s essence 
  • Earthy tones like amber and jade promote grounding and self-love
  • Bright colors like ruby and sapphire enliven the spirit
  • Metallic beads attract prosperity and fortune
  • Mixing and matching creates a symphony of personal meaning

Stringing beads with intention

  • I infuse my thread with healing vibrations before stringing.
  • Carefully alternating bead colors and sizes is an act of mindfulness  
  • Leaving spaces between beads gives them room to shine
  • Knotting between each bead secures their purpose and position  
  • Final knot sealed with lavender oil to inspire inner peace

Gifting handmade jewelry

  • Seeing someone’s eyes light up when they open my one-of-a-kind piece is magical
  • Including meaning cards explain symbols to more fully appreciate your creation
  • Filling out gift message infuses personal flair  
  • Mailing in eco-friendly packaging reduces footprint
  • Following up makes sure they feel the love!

The Art of Beadwork

Far out, I just adore the whole artistry behind old school love beadwork and managing it in this modern time! To me, selecting and stringing the perfect beads is like painting a folksy portrait of the wearer’s soul. I carefully curate each component – colors, shapes, textures – to reflect their personal style and energy. 

Like when my friend Willow was feeling ungrounded, I chose earthy jasper, smoky quartz, and carved bone beads for her necklace. Strung ’em together with hemp cord for an earth mama vibe that would help connect her to nature’s rhythms. Or when my friend Dakota was itching to get his business going, I wired strong hematite beads with citrine shards to manifest prosperity.

I just got so into beadworking as a form of self-expression, you know? Same way the flower children used to make and gift  love bead necklaces. Every knotted choker told a boho story. That handcrafted attention is something sorely missing today, wouldn’t ya say? Now we just click and purchase – no connection involved! 

But I intend to keep the loving beadwork legacy alive. I use traditional techniques like wire wrapping, knotting and macrame to interlace personal symbols into one-of-a-kind pieces. Then I gift ’em to friends or sell at craft fairs with beautifully letterpressed story cards. Protecting that human connection through my hippie style jewelry! Anyone can buy a basic bead necklace online. But soul-infused love beads? Far out, that’s where real magic lies! Far out, I’m so jazzed to keep the groovy art of love bead making alive!

History and cultural significance

  • Love beads originated with hippie subcultures in the 60s/70s
  • Handmade glass beads symbolize free spirit, individuality and peaceful vibes
  • Strung on leather, hemp or suede, they expressed bohemian style and values  
  • Trading necklaces represented free love and connection
  • Vintage love beads now carry powerful nostalgia 

Popular beading techniques

  • Wire wrapping frames and links beads using sculpted wire
  • Macrame knots beads into complex woven patterns
  • Stringing is direct but allows personalized spacing
  • Multi-strand designs create visual interest
  • Mixed media like charms and chains

Creating unique beadwork gifts

  • Choosing materials and colors that symbolize someone’s essence
  • Infusing wire wraps and knot work with healing energy  
  • Designing custom clasps with initials or symbols
  • Including meaning card to share bead message
  • Wrapping in natural fabrics and handmade boxes
  • Photographing finished pieces on models

It’s way more mindful than buying some mass-produced accessory online! My one-of-a-kind beaded creations tell boho tales.

Beading for Beginners

Crafting your own boho love bead jewelry is an incredible creative journey that channels the old-school artisan spirit. The hands-on process, using basic techniques like stringing and wire wrapping, allows beginners to tap into their inner creativity. I always suggest starting by finding inspiration in vintage beadwork magazines from the 60s and 70s—absorbing the earthy macrame styles really sets the tone. Then, exploring a bead shop with an open mind helps you intuitively choose beads without overthinking it. Remember, your first necklace might not be flawless, but the effort you put in as an artisan means so much more than a factory-made piece. Once you have your beads, let your creativity flow! Experiment with different sizes, shapes, colors, and accents like charms or glass shards. There are no strict rules here, just pure self-expression! Don’t worry too much about perfect techniques—a basic knot or twist can go a long way. And wearing your boho beadwork with pride is the ultimate reward! Crafting a love bead piece, mistakes included, holds the unique imprint of your energy and spirit. That positive vibe spreads love and connection, making beading a journey of personal growth rather than chasing perfection. So, ignite that creative spark and start stringing—it’s simpler than you might think!

Must-have supplies and tools

  • Glass beads in fun colors, wood beads for texture  
  • Hemp, cloth or leather cording for stringing
  • Wire cutters, pliers, crimp beads and pins
  • Beading awl to pull cords through beads  
  • Bead mat or board to contain those tiny pieces!


Basic stringing and knotting

  • Prep cords by sealing ends with clear nail polish
  • Thread on beads, alternating sizes and shapes
  • Space beads out aesthetically along the cord
  • Secure between beads with simple overhand knots
  • Finish with crimp beads and clasps for closure, or simple knots

Simple starter projects

  • Power crystal bracelet with meaningful charms
  • Essential oil diffuser necklace
  • Pet memorial keychain with color theme  
  • Mantra bead strand for meditation practice 
  • Suede anklet with metallic accent beads

The basics go a long way in beadland! Having the right supplies frees up creativity so you can string, knot and craft wearable hippie magic.

Express Your Love Through Beading

Aww, beads just have a way of capturing pure love and connection, you know? When I’m crafting my bohemian jewelry, I infuse each piece with good vibes to spread around. It’s like sharing healing hugs through beadwork! People think hippie culture is all about free lovin’, but those handmade love bead necklaces represented much deeper bonds. 

Like when my friend Willow was moving across the country, I made her a long distance love bead bracelet. Used rose quartz, jade and lavender beads on a soft suede cord for emotional balance. Accented with little metallic bird charms to symbolize free spirit. And I put extra work into a custom tree of life clasp, with our initials carved into the focal bead. Whenever she feels lonely out west, rubbing that bracelet is gonna remind her of the enduring sisterly love I wove into every knot and charm.

Or when my son Tyler aced his big job interview, I surprised him with a “prosperity please!” bead necklace made with tiger eye, citrine and peridot. Enhanced those money manifesting properties by chanting abundance mantras during the entire beading process! Seeing him rock that vibrant piece as he nails promotion after promotion fills me with pride. 

So next time you are crafting jewelry, infuse meaning into the materials and intent into the process. Let loving energy flow through your hands as you work. Before you know it, those boho beads gonna shine bright with cosmic connections you sparked to life! I just love infusing spiritual bonds into boho beadwork!  

Custom love bead bracelets

  • Select birthstones or colors symbolizing the relationship’s essence
  • Story bead holds miniature photo or scroll message  
  • Distance hearts meet in the center as a focal point 
  • Inside jokes can inspire charming danglers
  • Finished on wrist with adjustable macrame knot  

Spelling names and words

  • Alternate letter beads with mini glass spacers
  • Engrave initials or phrases on glass blanks
  • Wire wrap text beads for dimensional flair 
  • Establish color theme for each word or name
  • Add sequins between letters for sparkle

Adding charms and pendants

  • Curate charms related to hobbies and interests
  • Feature family member birthstones  
  • Symbols like hearts fit between focal beads
  • Custom laser cut wood or metal pieces
  • Suspend swirling wire pendants along strands 
  • Engrave dates, lyrics or sayings on flat charms

Infusing these personal details into beadwork deepens the connections vibrating within every boho love beads bracelet!

Thoughtful Handmade Bead Gifts

Nothing beats a thoughtful handmade bead gift straight from the heart! When I’m crafting jewelry to give friends and family, I channel mad cosmic energy into those love beads. Infuse ’em with healing vibes and symbols that amplify the receiver’s dreams and personality. The looks on their faces when they unwrap such a personal piece? Priceless!

Like for my best bud Meadow who moved abroad, I created a wanderlust macrame bracelet. Used aventurine, hematite and lapis beads for courage, grounding and wisdom – perfect for solo journeying! Added a stamped compass charm, and when she comes to visit we add a new dangler with the city name. 

And last birthday when my son Tyler started his dream project, I surprised him with an engraved founder’s leather cuff. Alternating beads spelled out “Born to Create” in his favorite colors, with a custom planet charm for creative flow. He felt so seen and supported! Now he wears that meaningful beadwork to every big meeting for a boost of mojo.  

Bottom line, a handmade bead gift beats factory accessories every time. The cosmic energy woven into boho jewelry has real manifestation power! So when gifting your loved ones, infuse each knotted bracelet or necklace with symbols and dreams to lift their spirits. They’re gonna feel that loving devotion radiating from every bead!

Boho beads lend themselves to so many thoughtful gifting moments!

Make jewelry for any occasion

  • Birthday strand with crystal beads in their favorite color
  • Valentine’s choker with complex wire wrapped heart  
  • Custom pet tag when they adopt a fur baby  
  • Congrats tassel bracelet for new jobs or milestones

Infuse pieces with meaning

  • Use azure beads and sea charms for ocean lovers 
  • Yellow jasper and sun charms for sunny personalities
  • Pink rose quartz beads to attract self-love  
  • Lakeside blues with stamped canoe pendant

DIY gift idea on a budget

  • Upcycle broken vintage jewelry for eclectic pieces
  • Thrift store bead hauls offer hidden potential  
  • Basic hemp cord allows focus on bead curation
  • Sale bins and secondhand shops provide variety
  • Cool glass and carved beads at flea markets or bead expos.

With some creativity, beads make great customizable and meaningful gifts for all budgets!

Bead Stringing 101

Hey friends, stringing beads is such a soothing way to tap into free-spirited creativity! The hands-on arranging of colors, patterns and textures channels some sweet hippie focus. And with basic materials and techniques, beginners can totally rock DIY boho jewelry. Allow me to break down Bead Stringing 101! First up, curate your vibrant glass globes, carved wood shapes, or upcycled plastic pieces. Go by size, color or just whatever tickles your chakras! Then prep your cording – soft suede, hemp and macrame all give off earth mama vibes. Secure cording ends with tape or nail polish to prevent fraying. Time for the best part – stringing sequences! Alternate beads creatively as you thread them along the cord. Contrast big chunky beads with small spacers. Cluster focal pieces. Leave alluring gaps! Remember, there’s no wrong way to groove here. Follow inspiration and avoid overthinking. Let those cosmic beadwork muses shine through! To finish, secure bead groupings with basic knots, crimps or wire. Then add clasps and fastenings so you can rock the boho magic! Optional extras like feathers, crystals or charms add funky embellishment. And voila – channeling spiritual style through tactile hippie crafting! Bead stringing taps our primal creativity in such a centering way. The repetitive motions promote a meditative mindset too! So grab some far out materials and awaken your inner artisan. Let those glassy globes transport you back to the peace and love era…one knotted strand at a time. Bead on, babies!  Peace and Love 

Types of Beading Wire

  • Soft Flex Beading Wire: A flexible and easy-to-work-with wire that’s perfect for delicate beads and designs.
  • Tiger Tail Beading Wire: A strong and durable wire that’s ideal for heavier beads and designs.
  • Accu-Flex Beading Wire: A memory-wire that holds its shape well, making it great for creating intricate designs.
  • Sterling Silver Wire: A beautiful and high-quality wire that can be used for both beading and wire wrapping.
  • Copper Wire: A versatile wire that can be used for beading, wire wrapping, and even metal stamping.

Securing Ends with Crimp Beads

  • Choose the Right Crimp Beads: The size and type of crimp beads will depend on the thickness of your beading wire.
  • Crimp Beads for Soft Flex Wire: Use crimp beads that are specifically designed for Soft Flex wire, as they have a wider opening to accommodate the nylon coating.
  • Crimp Beads for Tiger Tail Wire: Use crimp beads that are slightly smaller than the diameter of your tiger tail wire, as this will ensure a secure crimp.
  • Crimping with Needle-Nose Pliers: Use a pair of needle-nose pliers to crimp the beads. Simply fold the wire over the crimp bead and squeeze the pliers tightly.
  • Crimping with Crimping Pliers: For a more professional-looking crimp, use a pair of crimping pliers. These pliers have two jaws that crimp the bead in a specific shape, ensuring a strong and secure connection.

Achieving Perfect Bead Spacing

  • Use a Beading Board: A beading board is a great tool for achieving consistent bead spacing. The grooves on the board help to keep your beads in place while you string them.
  • Use Bead Spacers: Bead spacers are small beads that can be used to create even spacing between your larger beads.
  • Use a Ruler: Use a ruler to measure the length of your bead strand and mark off the desired spacing intervals.
  • Use a Beading Mat: A beading mat is a non-slip surface that can help to keep your beads from rolling around. https://beadkids.com/shop/beading-tools/bead-design-boards-2-pack/
  • Be Patient: Achieving perfect bead spacing takes time and practice. Don’t get discouraged if it doesn’t come naturally at first.  
  • Peace and Love
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