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Louise Bitsoie - Navajo
Authentic Ghost Bead Necklaces

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Paula says - "These beautiful Ghost Bead necklaces are made by Navajo Louise Bitsoie. She gathers the seeds from juniper trees from the Grand Canyon area on the Navajo Reservation. She collects the berries (seeds) after they have dried and ants have eaten one end of the seed. She makes a hole in the other end of the seed using a hot needle. She then hand strings them with various colors of glass beads. She said they are worn to ward off evil spirits and to bring tranquility and protection to the wearer.

"These necklaces are beautiful and full of life. They are made for wearing but when you are not wearing them, you can hang them in your bedroom, office or on the mirror of your truck or car to bring you peace and harmony. What a great gift to give or to receive!"

Native American Navajo Ghost Beads

Single Strand
NGB-100 - $18 to $29

Navajo Juniper Berry Ghost Bead Necklace

Medallions with Jaclas
NGB302 - $36

Are they Juniper or Cedar Berries?

Juniper berries have long been a Navajo medicine for treating such things as diabetes. Juniper berries (seeds) are also used to make ghost bead necklaces. Juniper is a broad category of trees, some of which have common names that include "cedar", such as "red cedar" that is widely used to make boxes and line drawers. This can be confusing because a true cedar tree comes from a different family of trees. So you will see ghost beads referred to being made from cedar seeds, juniper seeds or juniper/cedar seeds. If you want to be technically correct, they should be called juniper seeds or berries.

Questions or more details, write

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The Legend of Ghost Beads
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Ghost Beads are dried juniper berries.

The juniper berries are collected after ants have found the berries on the ground, nibbled off one end eaten the inside of the berry. The berry is then hollow and dry. Sometimes the berries are lightly smoked to further preserve them. A hole is made in the other end by the artisan and the dried berries are strung in accordance with the harmony of nature.

Ghost Bead necklaces are made by Navajo and other tribes. They are thought to represent an interconnection of the earth, trees, animals and humans and they bring peace, harmony and safety to the wearer.

They are a southwest tradition to protect one from evil spirits, ghosts and nightmares.

Click here to print this Legend for a gift card.

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