Discover Ghana Tours

Text Box: The Ghana Experience—Discover Ghana Beads
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Glass Bead Making is a traditional craft in the Krobo region of Ghana. These well known ‘Krobo Beads’  take their name from the Krobo mountain and the beads are still used today in the traditional festivals of the area 

We Use Recycled Glass

The glass used to make them comes from recycled bottles, plates and window glass.

The basic colour comes from the original glass collected and variations can be made by mixing the different colours of glass. 

The bead making is therefore environmentally friendly and also provides an income for the local people














3 The glass is the fired in the kiln



Discover Ghana Beads

Tortibo Village houses

Discover Ghana Beads All beads are individually, hand made by traditional craftsmen in the rural village of Tortibo which is in the Krobo region, near to the famous Volta Dam. In fact the villagers were resettled when the dam was built and the valley flooded. The village is very poor and does not have running water or electricity. 

We have built the kilns in the village to encourage the bead making as a source of income for the villagers.


We also organise a ‘Day in the Village’ for visitors who can beads and also producing tie-dye material.

If you would like more details of Discover Ghana Beads please visit our website 

Tortibo Village



spend the day making their own

Students being shown how the moulds are filled
Copyright Caroline DyalClay moulds
Copyright Caroline Dyal

The small clay moulds shown are filled with powdered glass  and the bowl has the glass fragments used for making the translucent beads

The clay moulds are coated with Kaolin to stop the glass from fusing when its fired

To make the holes in the centre of the beads, cassava stalks are pushed in and these burn when the beads are fired in the kilns

How Discover Ghana Beads Are Made

1 The glass is either broken down into small fragments to make Translucent Beads

                                                                    Or ground into a fine powder to make the Powdered Glass Beads                                                                                         which can then be painted








2 The glass is put into clay moulds

Discover Ghana Beads bracelets 
Copyright Caroline Dyal

Students from Farnborough Sixth Form College stringing Discover Ghana Beads during their day

 in Tortibo Village  

Strinigng beads
Copyright Caroline Dyal

Photos by Caroline Dyal

Firing in Kilns

Glass beads  take longer to fire and are placed into a very hot kiln for about 35-50mins. The powdered glass is fired at a  cooler temperature for about 20-30 mins and after painting, it is replaced in the kiln to fix the paint.

Finishing the Beads

While the glass is hot, an awl is used to make the central hole in the bead. The bead is the replaced in the mould to cool slowly for about 1 hour.The beads are then washed and polished by hand They are rubbed on a smooth stone with sand and water

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Discover Ghana painted beadsKiln for firing the beads
Copyright Caroline DyalLoading the kiln with the moulds
Copyright Caroline DyalDiscover Ghana Beads
Copyright Caroline DyalFarnborough 6th Form Students in Tortibo villageCaly mould
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