Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Recycle old paper into beads

Looking for another project to recycle old book pages, newspaper or used wrapping paper. If so , I have one for you today. Have you ever made paper beads? I have ... about 20 yrs or more ago. Wow do I feel old just saying that . Here is a pair of earrings I made today out of an old book page I had laying around and some hematite beads.

Here are the steps to follow to make the beads.

Print out a template on card stock or you can make one by hand if your good at that sort of stuff (figure 1). The widest part at the bottom should be no wider than 1/2" (this is what determines the width of your bead).
Use pencil to trace your template out on the paper your going to use (the thinner the paper the better the results)(scrapbook paper might not be a good option) newspaper and thin gift wrap(usually the inexpensive kind)works best.(be sure to use a spray matte sealer on your paper if you are going to use news paper or you will have ink everywhere) Your paper will look like figure 2 after you cut it out.

Now take a hollow center Q-tip and cut one end off (you can use a coffee stir that is hollow like a straw in the middle if you don't have Q-tips with hollow centers). Using a white glue or decoupage, attach the strip of paper around the stick of the Q-tip. Start with the wide side of the strip, wipe the back of the paper with a thin layer of glue as you go. Keep the strip centered in the middle as you wrap around the stick. When your done , brush some glue or decoupage around the whole bead. It should look like figure 3. You can cut off the other end of the Q-tip and stick it in foam core, until it dries (see figure 4). (this is handy if you are making a lot at one time).
When the beads are dry, cut the ends of the Q-tip flush with the beads on both sides. There you have your paper bead. The bead when dry is hard and more durable than one might think These make lovely necklaces, bracelets and earrings. They can add a personal touch to your homemade jewelry. How about saving the wrapping paper scraps from a daughter or granddaughters first birthday and using them to make a necklace or bracelet out of them to put away for her when she is older.
I am sure all you creative people out there can find many ...many ways to use them:)

Don't forget to come back on the 1st for my first monthly "button Swap" party

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