I’ve been using the Redbalifrog Sunflower a lot lately and wanted to also showcase the newer Surya the Sun bead. The Sunflower reminds me of Turkey, where we saw fields and fields of them! But Surya the Sun is based on the Hindu God and so not exactly appropriate for Turkey necessarily, so I was racking my brain how I could link them together. The ancient Spice Road saw trade between Turkey and India and I have textiles from both regions that are in similar colours so that was the inspiration for my bracelet. 

Let’s get a look at the fields of sunflowers first. Again, sorry that these are photos of photos-Turkey was just where we visited just before Syria. 

There were so many fabulous things to see there and we travelled around for almost two weeks. One of my favourite ancient sites was of Ephesus with the Library of Celsus.

Another fantastic site is Pamukkale, which means ‘cotton castle’ in Turkish. It looks like snow, right? But it is a sedimentary rock called travertine. You walk down a path, using your bare feet and as the water trickles down alongside you it’s the most wonderful feeling as the rock is very soft and gentle. It’s a very otherworldly place and I’ll always remember it!

We spent a few days on a gulet, a traditional Turkish boat and it was marvellous! Way better than being on the felucca in Egypt. We had a bed and bathroom and the food was fantastic and we all played parlour games in the evening. The gulet would drop anchor so we could swim for hours and an ice cream boat would come by! It was truly heavenly! I still have the captain’s business card if anyone wants it. During trips I save ticket stubs and other paper souvenirs and then I use crafting mod podge to mount all of them on a frame backing so I can hang them up. We’ve never been able to afford real artwork because of the trips, so I have a bunch of these collages hanging around the house. 

Of course, the thing to do in Turkey is buy a carpet. It’s a whole ritual unto itself. In the shop, you will be offered some tea and rugs will be brought out for you to see. I had my heart set on a silk rug and they brought out rug after rug. Finally the man said, “Madam, I think I know your taste!” With a flourish he unfurled the carpet that we then negotiated to buy (I hate that part!). 

Here it is up close. It is meant for the floor but we have it hanging on the wall. 

Now, quickly over to India as it is a predominantly Hindu country (although Bali is also mainly Hindu but Indonesia as a whole is predominantly Muslim). On our first day in India our tour guide took us to a couple of temples from different religions. His thought was that to understand India we needed to catch a glimpse of the religious diversity. First was a Sikh temple where the members were helping to build an addition. If you haven’t been to India, it really is incredibly overwhelming but very worth it!

We also went to a Hindu Temple. These were both in New Delhi. 

Near Jaipur we went to a place where craftsmen were doing woodblock printing on textiles. 

We bought a bedspread and I thought the colours reminded me of our carpet. 

Finally, here’s the bracelet! All the silver is from Redbalifrog

Below left to right are Lotus Flower, Rope, Trollbeads Gold Silver Trace, Tree of Life, Magic Monkey and a Pandora Blue Fascinating Iridescence. 

Below left to right after the Blue Fascinating Iridescence are Sunflower, a Spiritbeads Citrine Facet from Star Bijou, Surya the Sun and a Faceted Carnelian, also from Star Bijou. 

Below left to right after the Faceted Carnelian are Ganesha, Fern Leaf, Trollbeads Gold Silver Trace, Rope, Phoebe the Moon and the Lotus Love Lock. 

The face on Surya the Sun is different on each side. Here is one side. 

And the other side. 

Hope you’ve enjoyed a rather loosely themed look at these two beads. They also work really well on the Redbalifrog leather straps and that’s where I often use the Sunflower bead. Hope everyone is having a good summer so far!

Disclosure: For this blog I may receive some items as promotional samples.