Waist beads are accessories that were traditionally worn by Bantu women in Africa. Women typically wear these strings or cords around their waists and then tie them in front to cover themselves when they need to dress up, such as for church.
Most Africans and African-Americans throughout the United States still use waist beads as a way to signify that they are married. The beads or strings will indicate their partners’ names, which represents their commitment to them. Couples who choose this tradition may give one another additional sets of beads as symbols of their love and devotion.
To get started, all you need is string, beads – whatever type the wearer prefers – and a needle. You’ll want to measure about 18 inches or so of string and tie a knot at one end.
Thread the needle with the string and thread it through your beads, position them how you like and tie another knot on the other side. Cut off any excess and voila! You have your very own waist beads.
To wear, tie a knot at one end of the string and wrap it around your waist going through each bead as you go. Tie another knot on the other side when done. The beads will sit on your hips, making them great for women who want to cover up a little bit more while out in public.
This practice is very old and dates back to the first century, B.C. It is said that a king in Nigeria saw a woman wearing these beads on her waist and was inspired by it. So he ordered all of his brides-to-be to wear them before they got married as a symbol of their relationship with him.
This tradition later spread to the rest of Europe and then to Africa. Today, this practice is still alive and well in many areas such as Cameroon, Gambia, Burkina Faso, Nigeria and other places throughout the continent.
Some people wear these beads as a form of cultural expression; others wear them only during special occasions like weddings and even funerals, where it is believed that the wearer will be protected. They are also worn to keep evil spirits away if someone is feeling sick or possesses bad luck.
The beads may also serve as a way of communicating with the dead if a loved one has passed on and you want to communicate with them in some form. The waist beads may help with that.
Then there is a way of wearing these beads to signify your marital status and communicate that information to others in a subtle yet cool way. These strings of pearls, beads, shells or seeds will go great with any type of outfit. You can wear them around the waist or hip area depending on how you want to show off your style.
This is why waist beads are still very popular in many parts of Africa today, including Nigeria where there are several tribes that use them for this purpose. They can be bought at local markets or special shops set up for this very purpose. You do not have to get married to wear these though!
Why go through the trouble of buying them and tying them up around your waist when you can just wear a ring on your finger instead?
Waist beads work best for singles who want to tell other people apart from other girls or guys who are not married. They also go well with the African waist beads tradition of wearing them during special occasions such as weddings and funerals.
Then there are also those who wear them because they would like to keep bad luck away from their lives, which is another reason why some women opt for this tradition.
It basically all boils down to personal preference and what you feel comfortable wearing since these come in different styles and designs. You can get a little creative yourself with the different colors and designs or just stick to the simple black ones.
Some women prefer waist beads that have a round shape while others may like something more embellished. What matters is that these sacred objects will bring you good luck and give you the best protection you need from evil forces, which is very important if you ask us.
The best thing about these beads is that they can be worn by anyone and every time you want, whether during the day or at night. It does not matter if you wish to wear them with a simple outfit or an elegant gown – as long as your heart desires it, then go for it!
There really is no limit to wearing waist beads and women in Nigeria and Cameroon know this all too well. It has become a part of their culture and they will continue to wear them for as long as they can or until God tells them otherwise.
So this is how to make Waist Beads.
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