Related Articles


Related Categories


Recently Added


'Cinnabar' Bead Source.

Q: I'm looking for a source for 'Cinnabar' (and here, I'm talking about the lacquered wood) beads; online would be great, but I'd be happy to get a catalog, too. I'm especially interested in different shapes and colors (black, cream, etc.); while I do like the 15mm red rounds, I'd like to see what else is out there. I don't want to wait around for someone to list things on eBay or any of the other auction sites.

A: I talked with 'Fire Mountain Gems' and they don't know what the beads are actually made of...*sigh*. They say they are laquered and "Cinnabar Style". I asked if they were wood covered with laquer and then carved. The woman I spoke with went and asked someone else because she didn't know. When she came back on the phone line, she said they had no way of knowing. She also thinks laquer and resin are used interchangeably. I didn't think this was going to be sooooo complicated! :) I have the other type of Cinnabar beads, but would be interested in finding a source (bulk) for the wood ones if anyone knows of a place these can be obtained. I have 'sacrificed' many a 'Cinnabar' bead to seek if wood lurked within! No luck yet! Well, now I'm not so sure whether the couple of 15mm 'Cinnabar' beads I already have are wood or resin, but I don't want to "sacrifice" them to find out, but I like them, regardless, so I guess if they turn out to be resin, its okay. Especially since I basically just make jewelry for myself and don't sell it (yet). While 'Fire Mountain' does carry these beads, they are exhorbitantly expensive. I was just looking at that particular item in shock in the catalog today, LOL. I have been using the black laquered ones ever since they first starting showing up at bead shows, and you can get a whole strand of them for $8. A whole strand, not one or two beads. Check out your local listings and see if there is a bead show coming your way. Would a hot needle test work on these beads? Heat a long darning needle, touch the point inside the hole of the bead. The smell of the heated area (don't burn it, just heat it) would smell like plastic or gas if it is any type of polyester resin or plastic. It should smell like wood if the core is wood, or like burning lacquer (kind of like pine tar).