How to Make Paper Beads
Paper Bead Tutorials
Paper beads are the perfect example of an eco craft. This can be a great project for kids as they will have the chance to learn something about saving the environment (one bead at a time) as well as for adults as you can easily make stunning jewellery pieces.
There are many different shapes of paper beads and I will show you how to make some of them. I am sure when you will learn the basic technique behind making a paper bead only your imagination will be the limit.
I let the paper inspire me. When I see a paper (magazine...) and I love the colors on it I use it for making a paper bead. If there's enough of it you can easily make a whole jewlery set.
How to Make Paper Beads
What you will need to make your paper beadspaperskewer, toothpick or anything simmilargluescissors or crafts knife (adults only)Optionalgloss varnish colors (you can color the beads so they will all be the same) jewellery making suppliesYou can use all kinds of papers, you can use old newspapers, posters, wrapping paper (love it), origami paper...
While I would never recommend this for kids if you are planning on making paper beads yourself and don't have a craft knife I think it is well worth considering.
If you do a lot of paper (and other) crafts you will love the crafts knife. It's super handy for paper beads as you will be able to cut it in seconds. This knife will be also great with various other crafts, especially the ones that require a lot of detailed cutting (if you ever tried to make a paper craft 3D project you know what I'm talking about)
Making Paper Bead Stencils - Basic Paper Bead
I like my paper beads even so I draw the shapes with a pencil (on the back side) before I cut them. For a simple round or oval bead you will need a long triangle. I usually make my beads out of old magazines, store newsletters and commercials but here I used a plain white paper.
When you decide on the width of a bead divide it in half and you will get the unit that you will use to help you make the stencil.
Step By Step Instructions - In photos and words
- Cut the paper strip with either craft knife or scissors
- Take the skewer or a toothpick (the thickness of it will be the diameter of the hole) and start wrapping the bead around it - wider end first.
- Continue wrapping the bead adding glue here and there (there's no need for the glue to be applied to the whole paper strip).
- When done you can leave the bead on the skewer for a while for the glue to dry. When it dries take the bead off of the skewer.
Make your beads last (and shine) - Making them water resistant
Glossy varnish won't only protect the beads it will also make them look more glamorous. It will make sure they won't scuff and will protect them if you get caught up in the rain.
I usually use polymer clay glossy varnishes as they do a great job, are safe to handle and don't smell as bad as some other ones.
I apply about 3 layers on each bead.
Some ideas for the bead shapes - Be creative
As I already said there are lots of different bead shapes you can do with paper. These are just a few basic examples.
In order to make a round paper bead you will bead you will need a long strip.
A simple necklace anyone can make - Super easy project
I made this simple necklace (and a pair of matching earrings even though I actually don't have holes in my ears) out of 3 pages from a children's magazine. I used a flexible cord, crystal beads which I put in between paper ones and that's basically it.
I really love how it turned out, the colors are great. It's a perfect piece for the summer.