What is the meaning of Mardi Gras beads? Certainly, they are a universal sign that a great party is about to start, and they are one of the most enduring symbols of Mardi Gras. The beads themselves have a meaning that shifts depending on what you are looking for from Mardi Gras. They can represent good luck, they can represent the spirit and color of Mardi Gras or-depending on your age and inclination-they can be used as a bartering tool for a glimpse of bare flesh.
The Evolution Of Mardi Gras Beads
The beads were only one of several different types of "throws," or cheap items tossed by members of krewes from Mardi Gras parade floats. All of these throws signified good luck. However, the beads did not become popular until the early 20th century.
While beads were never made of expensive materials, the beads of the past were of higher quality than the cheap plastic used today. The original beads were made of glass, but the glass was considered dangerous, so the krewes started tossing out plastic beads instead. These plastic beads have continued to follow various bead trends. Today, clear beads are not popular, but long beads are.
While the beads themselves do not have a specific significance, their colors do. The colors of Mardi Gras are purple, green and gold. Purple refers to justice, green indicates faith and gold means power. You can get plastic Mardi Gras beads in any color, but you really can't go wrong with purple, green and gold.
Getting Mardi Gras Beads
Today, Mardi Gras party beads are often considered a way to convince a woman to doff her top, particularly in the French Quarter. However, the meaning of the beads has nothing to do with nudity, and you don't have to go topless in order to get a strand. A little begging, pleading and yelling "Throw me something, mister!" should suffice. Krewe members also tend to favor children when throwing out beads. However, both children and adults should be careful when getting beads during a Mardi Gras parade. The parades are crowded, and everyone wants those beads as much as you do.
Why not make up a Mardi Gras hostess gift basket in Mardi Gras colors complete with some Cajun food, several jazz CDs, and a generous handful of Mardi Gras beads?
Masks, beads, crowns and parades make for a memorable Mardi Gras experience. The Mardi Gras colors of green (symbolizing faith), purple (justice) and gold (power) allow you to incorporate a lot of crafts into a Mardi Gras theme. There a lot of crafts you can make using these things for either Mardi Gras decoration, or just for fun.