What are Whitewood Beads?

Whitewood Beads
Whitewood Beads

Whitewood refers to one or more species of trees which have white or light colored wood.

On the market, Philippine whitewoods can include:

  • Igem Wood (aka Saru)
  • Hambabawood
  • Mangga-Mangga wood
  • G’melina (white teak, also Germalina, Gmelina) – This is a common, fast growing whitewood, that has a wide variety of uses
  • Wild mamalis wood (pangantuon, pangantun)

Where do your whitewood beads come from?

Our beads are cut from the wild mamalis, or pangantuon, wood from the Philippines. This is a high quality whitewood. It is the most expensive of the whitewoods, but has the smoothest texture, and is capable of producing beads with a nearly flawless finish. The beads are commonly bleached and washed thoroughly to produce a uniform finish. Next, they are allowed to air dry, a process which can take some time. Finally, the beads we carry are tumbled and finished by hand to preserve the white color. The end result is a wood bead that is very smooth, feeling almost like porcelain.

Are whitewood beads eco-friendly?

Programs such as Go Green Philippines have been working to ensure the sustainability and renewability of the natural resources of the Philippines. Pangantuon trees are one of the resources targeted in these efforts because its high quality wood is exported in the form of beads and jewelry and helps to support the Philippine economy. There are are lots of pangantuon trees where every time a tree is cut down, another tree is planted in its place. In this way, the wood is available for various uses and the effect on the environment is reduced!

Copyright 2013 Beads and Honey, LLC – All text and images.

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