Paper beads are fun and easy to make. They’re the perfect project for kids or older people alike. The best part is that paper beads are extremely affordable to make and they can even be a great craft for recycling!
These simple DIY paper beads are a great project that you can make today.
All you need to make these necklaces is a glue stick, tooth picks and clear nail polish. You will also need an old magazine that you plan to recycle.
To start you need to cut paper from the magazine into long tapered strips. Today I’m just showing you how to make really simple beads. To do this you simply need to cut the paper into really long strips that start at about 1/2′ wide and tapers evenly into a point. I didn’t even measure for most of these beads, I just eyeballed the measurement.
If you want to go into more complicated beads than you will need to do more precise measurements and use multiple strips of paper, which we will cover in a few weeks. But let’s just start with simple beads and master those before we move on.
A word about the paper you’re using: You do need a thicker paper such as magazines or junk mail. If you want a bead that is primarily one color you need to look for paper that is mostly that color. It’s really fun to experiment and play around with the different color combinations. What you think it will look like probably won’t happen but you’ll be amazed by all the really neat beads that come from what looks like a boring strip of paper.
Start with the side of the paper that you want to use facing down. Place the tooth pick on the wide end of the paper and slowly start rolling the paper around the toothpick.
Keep rolling the paper around the toothpick. It should be easy and fast.
Once you get about two inches left, run the glue stick over the end and finish wrapping it around the toothpick.
You might have to hold the end for just a minute to keep it tacked down.
Then your bead looks finished but it’s not quite done yet!
First slightly push it up the toothpick to make sure it’s not stuck. Be gentle, you just need to know that it can move. It works best if you just use the edge of your nail.
Now that you have a ton of amazing beads you want to keep them looking that great!
Some people dip the beads in polyurethane to preserve them but we’re doing it the simple way remember? So dig in your huge bucket of old nail polish and grab clear top coat nail polish.
While the bead is still on the toothpick, give the bead a quick coat of clear nail polish. Make sure that you don’t paint the toothpick because it will seal the bead to the toothpick. Let the first coat dry for a few minutes and then do a second coat.
When you’ve done two coats of clear nail polish, you’re ready to use your beads!