Display – Face Beads by Lissa Underhill

Mistress Lissa Underhill, Hartshorn-Dale

EK Wiki: https://wiki.eastkingdom.org/index.php?title=Elysabeth_Underhill

Face Beads started to be made in the 7th century BC, when according to Glenn Markoe in Phoenicians (p. 156-7), “demon masks, animals, and male and female heads began to appear. It’s probably more correct to call these figures pendants, rather than beads, as Markoe notes that they were often found on necklaces as special talismans (perhaps these are another variant of “evil eye” beads, as are the stacked dots beads on the necklace above). Markoe says that these beads were likely made at multiple workshops along the Phoenician coast, in areas such as Cyprus, the Egyptian Delta, and Carthage. The pendants started small (3cm) but later grew up to 8 cm in height. These beads traveled widely and have been found throughout the Mediterranean, and in Russian and Europe.


Corning’s Glass museum notes that these beads were made using the technique of core forming. Core forming is a process where small dried balls of clay, dung, and straw were wrapped around a mandrel. The bead was made on that “core” and the core cleaned out once the bead cooled. This results in a hollow bead. It is also easier to make larger beads using core forming, as less glass is required due to the large core. cmog.org/video/core-formed-vase-technique

6 thoughts on “Display – Face Beads by Lissa Underhill

  1. You are so very talented and seem to be able to make glass do what you want with out back talk. Lol Thank you for sharing with the Kingdom

  2. I am a lucky recipient of one of your face beads! I treasure it! It is an amazing piece of art! As for the hollow beads, that’s really interesting about using the clay core!

  3. This is amazing. I got to see one of your beadwork courses at Pennsic last year and it was amazing to watch you work. I can’t imagine making something like this myself – thank you for sharing your talent with us!

  4. WOW …. this is my first time even hearing about face beads. you do amazing work. Thanks for giving me one more rabbit hole to look into !

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