The most common symbol found in many hilltribe silver pieces is the chakra flower, often labeled simply as ‘flower print’. It looks like a dot surrounded by 6 dots of the same size and has been used repeatedly throughout traditional Hill Tribe Silver pieces.
The artisans call this symbol the ‘Pod Duang’, although this is a misnomer since ‘Pod Duang’ actually refers to Siamese Bullet Money. The symbol is one among several dozen unique patterns that have been officially identified on the ancient coins. However, it is believed that the six dots surround a single dot originate from the Rattanakosin period in Thai History.
Just like Shiana’s hilltribe silver, the Pod Duang (Bullet Money) was created with .999 fine silver. They were popular from 1569 to 1767 in Siam and looked like a bar that was pinched, forming a hole so that it could be strung up and easily carried. As beaders may have already guessed, this also naturally made them popular as jewelery.
Originally, most modern Hilltribe silver jewelry pieces were made to copy ancient styles for the purpose of being sold in antique shops alongside authentic pieces. Strung up bullet money bracelets and necklaces were certainly among those items. Many stamps of ancient symbols were recreated for this purpose but the reason the 7 dots seem to gain more favor was for two reasons: one, it was a rare and sought after symbol by collectors and two, it represented the 7 chakras on the human body.
By stamping this on their silver the Karen artisans are not only hinting at the link between their new silver pieces and the ancient silver work of a bygone era, they are also blessing it with the chakra symbol for balance and prosperity.
We loved the symbol and thought it captured the spirit of hilltribe silver perfectly, so much so that in 1999 Shiana used it as part of our logo as the decorative portion of the peacock’s feathers:
We hope you enjoyed that little bit of history, it was certainly a lot of fun tracking down the source of the symbol. Take care and happy beading!
It’s been known to ward off bad luck, vampires, and werewolves, but carrying silver is not all superstition. In 400 BC, Hippocrates talked about the antimicrobial benefits of silver, and for centuries humans used the metal to prevent infections in wounds and keep food and water fresh. We know today that nanosilver is used in the same way to keep bacteria off everything from our laundry machines to socks, but the reason behind silver’s “magical” properties have never been fully investigated.
A recent study published in Science Translational Medicine is now shedding some light on the matter. The research states that adding silver to antibiotics makes it thousands of times more effective. Not only that, but silver has been shown to weaken bacteria that was previously immune to antibiotics.
Silver worked in two ways, first by degrading bacteria’s protective layer. This allows the antibiotics to more easily penetrate the bacteria. Secondly, it leads to the creation of molecules that kill bacteria such as oxygen.
We think the ancients were on to something when they used pure silver coins to keep their water clean. And while wearing silver may not cure all that ails you, it’s always good to know that your jewelery is doing double duty.[Source – Scientific America]
Shiana’s New Pricing Policy
Shiana’s prices are now displayed in full retail. This is to support our customers, resellers and designers who need to show their own customers an item’s value directly from our website.
Prices are The Same or Lower
You will receive the same Shiana prices from our previous site (or lower) when you meet the minimum order amount. Customers benefit from a full 50% off our listed prices by purchasing just 100 USD in one order. This means getting 200 USD worth of items, for just 100 USD.
Further reductions in price will be available by meeting discount minimums as follows:
- 200 USD – 50% off – Pay only 100 USD
- 1000 USD – 50% off + additional 5% off your order – Pay only 475 USD
- 4000 USD – 50% off + additional 10% off your order – Pay only 1800 USD
Bulk Ordering for Further Reductions
Customers who usually buy our x10 Bulk Order Sets will be happy to know we have not forgotten to include these in the new site. When selecting the item’s finish, you will also get the option to select the finish with a x10 quantity when available. Items purchased in bulk will get a the bulk discount, and a further reduction when your entire order meets the minimum discount level.
To Better Serve You
Discounts will automatically show up in your shopping cart before checkout. No need to apply coupons or remember values. For more information, questions or comments please do not hesitate to contact us. Thank you!
We received these beautiful nuggets of peridot some time ago and couldn’t wait to do something fun with them. In this example, we added oval jump rings between each stone. Use oval jump rings instead of round ones to compliment the ovoid nuggets and also show some randomness in between. When strung with stretching tendon, the bracelet is a light accessory perfect for every day wear.
For further customization, add charms to the links in any combination and you have a very unique charm bracelet.
The purer the metal, the slower time has an affect on it. This has been true in metallurgy since the copper, bronze, and iron ages. Pure iron is much more resistant to rust, and likewise, pure silver is more resistant to oxidization.
That said, the patina on silver is some of the most visually beautiful things to witness. Of course, similar to watching the grass grow, silver doesn’t incur patina in the blink of an eye. But left to its own natural devices, as the tones darken, the patina’s hue goes from light brass to bright gold, then dark copper with blue orientation, maturing to burnt sienna or velvety ebony. For sterling silver, the process may take a few months, but for fine silver (especially ones without any soldering) the process may take years.