Italian Whiteheart Seed Beads – 7/0 Cherry Red


Antique Italian white heart seed beads – size 7/0 cherry red


These antique Venetian white heart seed beads are a classic cherry red. Whitehearts were used in the African bead trade, and they are often seen in old Native American beadwork as well. Because of how they were traded around the world, they’re often referred to as “trade beads”. Whether it is due to their history or their beauty, these old and uncommon beads are quite collectible.


✭ Material = glass
✭ Size = 7/0 seed bead, approx 10- 12 beads per inch when strung
✭ Quantity = 10 grams or 1 ounce

They’re a size 7/0 seed bead, and these beads’ average diameter is about 3.4 mm. There are about 10-12 beads per inch when strung. Their irregular size and shape attests to their handmade nature. This listing is for a 10 gram lot of beads, which will come loose in a baggie. I counted out a couple of grams and found that there are roughly 19 to 20 beads per gram, so a 10 gram bag should hold (VERY) approximately 190-200 beads.

Also known as “Hudson Bay” or “Cornaline D’Allepo” beads, this style was produced in Italy from the early 1800s to the 1960s – though this particular stock dates from between the late 1800’s – early 1900’s. The name “white heart” references the core of white glass at the center of the bead. Back then, red glass was made using real gold, so these beads were very expensive to produce. In order to conserve the red/gold glass, it was wound around a white core. When strung, the white is hardly visible – but if you lay the beads with the hole facing up, you can see the white at the heart of each bead. Over the years these beads have acquired a lovely translucent patina.

Because these beads were made by hand so long ago, you’ll notice some variance in the size and shape of the beads. This lack of uniformity is typical for antique handmade glass beads, and should be expected.

Additional information

Weight .3 oz
Dimensions 2 × 2 × 1 in

10 grams, 1 ounce (28 grams)