Recycled cycle beads!
Cycle Bead Necklaces, also known as Birth control chains or Fertility tracking beads are Natural family planning method for women with regular cycles lasting between 26 and 32 days.
You can use them to both plan pregnancy and avoid pregnancy, and most importantly, I think, is that they are beautiful way to mark the passage of time to become aware of your own rhythms, cycle and moods.
Although there are many app options available for this, isn’t there a certain charm to having a string of beads you can wear or hang by your bed? They would also make a wonderful gift for a young woman or someone trying for a baby.
My research is linked below – this might give you a better understanding of what they’re all about. Mine are made from plastic bottle beads and similar to design 5 by Fitch Fertility Center
In the end I chose a simple 3 colour scheme:
7 red = permanent marker
12 white = clear bottles
13 green = green bottles
They’re all threaded together so that each day you slide one bead down. At the end of the cycle you slide them all back up again.
I’ve found they work well. I thought they’d be irresistible to little fingers who would fiddle with them and loose the place, but this hasn’t happened either. If I’d have worn them round my neck I don’t think I’d have got away with it!
The string I used was natural fibres and these wore out after a few months so I would recommend a strong cord instead.