Monday, September 14, 2009
Purpleheart Bangle Bracelet
This is another one of my favorite woods because, as the name implies, the heartwood of purpleheart is a rich, exotic purple, and I absolutely love it. When first harvested, it is a dark brown but quickly changes to the beautiful dark purple it is popular for. Further exposure to light will return it to a more brown color, although the purple will still be quite evident, giving it a mixture of the two colors. Purpleheart’s unusual natural coloring makes it highly sought after for specialty uses, some of which include wood sculptures and carvings, billiard accessories, and of course, my bangles and other jewelry.
The Amazon Rainforest produces much of the purpleheart used today, although it can be found in Central America’s tropical regions. This wood is straight grained, dense, very hard, and difficult to work, as it is easy to burn if not careful when sanding. Purpleheart takes a beautiful finish, water based finishes are best for retaining the color, but for wearing against the skin, I chose to use a teak oil for the above bracelet. I think it is a better alternative in combination with skin oils and PH's. Please feel free to comment, comments are always welcome.