Monday, July 12, 2010

More on Paper Beads

Paper Bead Art 

By: Diy maven Mar 13, 2007

When we were kids, my sister Joyce and I rolled paper beads; little did we know we were doing something girls a hundred years earlier had done. Although Joyce and I made funky necklaces with our beads, our Victorian counterparts used the fruits of their labor to fashion curtains for doorways. Nowadays, I like to use paper beads to create 3D art, including greeting cards.
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Here's another take on this fun craft:

i rolled my beads onto a piece of wire, as you can see from the pic. you want to roll from the wide side, as tightly as you can, ending with the teeny skinny side and make sure that that end is glued down well. i put about a dozen beads per foot long piece of wire. they will come off pretty easily. i tried using wooden skewers coated in vaseline, but the beads stuck to that. no good. so that is it. you could leave them at that point as is,paper beadsthis is what they look like unsealed... or seal them with mod podge, as many coats as you want. or you could paint the beads, add sparkle or ink or whatever you like. at that point, scrap paper beadsi antique some of my beads, jacquard has really great sparkly pigments that can be put right onto the bead, or, in my favorite way, added to UTEE which is thick embossing powder and then the bead can be rolled in it and heated or heat the utee in a pot and dip your beads in. the more coats of this you put on, the thicker. this stuff is amazing. use different finishes to make the beads look like metal, gems, or pearls, even...pearl paper beadsthese are a bit lumpy and bumpy, but you get the idea. head over to my flickr bead set to see some of the other ones, and new things will be added all the time.
once you are done, you can sand the edges a bit, or sand the whole thing for another look altogether. the options are endless. make small beads that are more plain, or big ones to use as pendents, and make them into any shape. if you wanted to just layer them, you can cut out a form and go from there, or decoupage over something and drill a hole later. so many options! oooh, and photos! you can make a photo bead or pendant. i am going to!

don't be afraid to try different things. this is inexpensive and fun. anyone can do it, and it is a great project for little kids. for those of us that save every little scrap, this is perfect. i am planning to try yarn and fabric, but keep an open mind and have no fear!
a couple of tips: use either a non-stick cookie sheet or some waxed paper so you don't get glue and paper and gunk all over your table or whatever you are using. also, if you use the utee, it can burn you, so be careful with it. baby wipes are a great thing to have handy so you can get the glue and smutz off of your fingers in between beads, as well as cooling off your fingers if your drip hot stuff. roll a really long bead and after it is dry, cut it into several smaller beads with a utility the entire tutorial
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