Well, my guru beads arrived from Potala Gate and I was really impressed with the quality of the stones and silk tassels I ordered, the prices were good and the delivery was fast. After some dithering I swapped out the spacers on my sandalwood mala for some of the silver beads I found and used a shell guru bead and cup. I am very VERY happy with this mala now- it’s just right (and I’ve discovered that I like the natural sandalwood scent much more than oils, which I haven’t worn in years due to sensitivity to strong smells).
Unfortunately, as I started my amethyst wrist mala I realised that I chose beads that are too large:
Same number of beads, vastly different size. I’m now unsure what to do- it’s not long enough to wrap my wrist twice. I may try and find enough beads to rethread a 54-bead mala. At that size it might be long enough for a necklace. However, I really wanted an amethyst wrist mala (27-bead) so I may start hunting for another semi-precious bead source; the local craft stores may be convenient and inexpensive, but their options are fairly limited. There are one or local two beads shops I will check out, but I know that at least one has closed- darn economy.
I am really enjoying making these however, and I’m only kicking myself that I didn’t start making these *before* the holidays so I could give more as gifts. I think that I would like to make a green jade wrist mala for myself as well, but clearly I still have a few lessons to learn. I think I’m slightly addicted so I expect there will be many more to give away.