First of all, I have one more class at Grand River Beads on July 2nd. We’ll be doing washi-paper beads, and making earrings or bracelets. Then, the last week of July I’ll be reprising my kid’s classes at Stamplistic, offering Polymer Pendants and Shrinky Charms (bracelets and zipper pulls) for their camp. Please visit their websites for more information or to register!
Now, if you can’t make my class (awww!), why not do your own paper beads with your kids, grands, or neice/nephew(s)?
- old magazine, color comic pages, left over scrapbooking paper
- white glue
- scissors, paper trimmer, or paper shredder
First off: cut the paper- (I like to use old glossy magaizines, recycling is cool)- into strips. I like to start kids on basic “barrel” beads, which means that the pieces are cut into uniform strips of anywhere between 1/2 to 3/4 inch. If you have a paper shredder that cuts into strips, you can save a lot of prep time. Or, you might want to make this a math activity for your kids, and have them measure the paper into on inch increments, draw the lines with a ruler, and then cut them with the scissors.
Squirt some white glue onto a paper plate, and add a few drops of water to thin it down a little. To begin making beads, roll the paper around the toothpick a couple of times, then start to add glue to the strip. (You don’t want to glue the paper to the toothpick!!) Keep rolling as tightly as you can, as straight as you can, until the paper is all rolled up. Make sure the “tail” is securely glued down. Place the toothpick in some floral foam to dry, if you have it, or put it on a glass plate.
Let the beads dry completely. you can either leave them as is, or brush them with a little clear nail polish to make them sturdier and more water-repellant.Â It’s safest to leave them overnight.
- String on stretch cord to make necklaces, anklets, or bracelets. Accent with some wood or plastic pony beads.
- Make zipper pulls or keychain fobs for the boys.
- Glue them onto paper mache frames for interesting room decorations!
- Use them as a sculptural element for collages…. get creative!
For other shapes of beads, visit the Paper University.