Wear rose beads for a natural sweet-scented fragrance.
Enjoy this craft of years gone by, using roses from a special occasion, such as a wedding or a birthday. Alternate the earthy, handmade rose beads with other pretty beads, if you like. When not in use, store the beads in a drawer as a delicate sachet.
1. Dry the rose petals in a warm, dark, airy place until they are brittle. Pulverize the petals in a coffee or spice mill until they're finely powdered. In a cast-iron pot, blend the rose petal powder with enough rosewater to make a mash. Simmer on the stove for 30 minutes, stirring often. Add rosewater as needed to prevent scorching. Repeat the simmering process three days in a row, leaving the mash in the pot from day to day. The mash will gradually react with the iron and turn black. Place the mash in a glass or porcelain bowl. Blend in the flour to form a dough. If you don't shape the beads right away, cover the dough and store it in the refrigerator for up to three days.
2. To shape beads, pinch off bits of dough; roll them between your thumb and forefinger into smooth, pea-size spheres. Dab your fingertips with rose essential oil to intensify the beads' fragrance as you shape them. Set the finished beads on a large plate. String the beads onto 15-inch lengths of carpet thread, knotted at one end, using a darning needle. Push the needle through the center of each bead; slide the bead onto the thread. Tie strands of beads to the bottom of a hanger; knot each strand to secure it. Hang the beads to dry in a warm, dark place. Each day, gently slide the beads up and down each thread to prevent them from sticking to it. Beads dry completely in a week to 10 days. Restring on beading thread in desired length. Attach a clasp, or tie the strand with a knot.