I LOVE making crafts that re-purpose old magazines, like these DIY sticker decals and these fun envelopes. My kids (and a couple of socially distanced friends at the pool) had a blast making these DIY paper beads out of magazine paper. The fact that the kids wanted to make these bead bracelets (rather than swim in the pool!!!) on such a hot day is very telling!
DIY Craft Camp for Kids (Part 2!!!)
Since our previous DIY Craft Camp was such a success, we have decided to do an encore (part 2) this week! Here are all of our previous (free!) virtual camps, in case you missed any:
- “Back to Basics” Life Skills Camp
- DIY Craft Camp
- Cooking Classes for Kids
- Science Experiments for Kids
- Kids Entrepreneurship
- World Traveler (Kids Geography Camp)
Don’t forget to join our Facebook group to see our live classes and follow us on Pinterest, so you won’t miss a thing! You definitely need to follow Hannah at Inspired Sparks too, because she is posting all kinds of awesome videos to teach kids about science, crafts and cooking.
DIY Paper Bead Bracelet – Materials List
Good news! The supply list is pretty short for these DIY paper bead bracelets, and most of the supplies you probably already have at home!
- Glue (We used the glitter glue from this huge Amazon sale! Make sure you are in our Facebook group so that you don’t miss out on any of the hot deals that we share!!!)
- Magazines or fun printed paper
- Elastic cord or string (if you want to make the beads into a bracelet)
- Pen or pencil
If you want your DIY paper beads to hold up longer (and to be waterproof), you will need a sealant. My favorite options that are non-toxic and safe to use around kids are Mod Podge and Triple Thick Glaze. I especially love the Triple Thick Glaze because it is a spray and super easy to apply.
How to Make DIY Paper Beads from Magazines
First, let’s make our DIY paper beads and then we will talk about how to make the beads into fun bracelets or necklaces!
1. Make dots every 3 cm on the back of your magazine paper
Either a pen or pencil works perfectly for this step. Draw small dots every 3 cm along the long side of your magazine paper (as shown below.) Make sure that you are doing this on the back of your paper, so that the lines and dots won’t be visible on your final DIY paper beads!
2. Make a dot 1.5 cm from the top (along the other long edge of your paper)
On the opposite long edge of your paper, draw a dot 1.5 cm from the top (like in the following photo.)
3. Draw dots going down your paper every 3 cm, starting from the dot you made in step 2
Now you are going to draw dots every 3 cm, starting from the dot that you made in step 2. Basically, one long side of your paper will have dots every 3 cm from the top, and the other long side of your paper will have dots every 3 cm but starting from 1.5 cm (instead of from the very top.)
4. Connect the dots to form triangles & cut them out
Connect the dots across the sheet of paper to create lots of triangles (as shown below).
Then, cut all of the triangles out.
5. Take a triangle strip of paper & roll the short edge around your straw once
Starting with the shortest edge of your triangle, wrap it around your straw once, as shown below.
6. Apply a thin line of glue
Place a little bit of glue on the back side of the paper (as shown below), so that the bead will adhere together. Make sure that the glue does not go on the straw itself, because you don’t want the bead to be glued onto the straw! Another helpful tip is NOT to put too much glue near the edges, because the glue will spread as you wrap the paper. If a little bit “oozes” out though, don’t worry! Just wipe it with your fingers. The kids really liked the extra glitter that “oozed” out since we used glitter glue, so we didn’t even wipe it away!
7. Keep rolling the bead tightly around the straw, applying glue every so often
Continue rolling the paper around the straw to form your bead. Place more glue on the paper as you continue wrapping the bead around the straw. When you reach the end of the paper triangle, make sure to put glue on the last couple of inches of paper.
8. (Optional) Apply a sealant to make the beads waterproof and more durable
If you want to make your beads last longer, this is the perfect time to apply Mod Podge or Triple Thick Glaze. Either way, we have to let the beads dry, so we may as well let the sealant dry at the same time!
9. Let the DIY bead dry on the straw & then remove it
We let the beads dry on the straw overnight, but it definitely didn’t take that long. They were easy to slide right off the straw too. Out of curiosity, I tried to remove one bead right after it was finished (and while the glue was definitely still wet.) Honestly, it worked just fine that way too! However, since we made the beads at the pool, it was easier to keep them on the straw for transporting purposes.
How to Make DIY Paper Bead Bracelets
Obviously, you can just string the beads onto elastic cord or string to make a traditional bracelet. However, you know we like to go big around here!!! So, I taught the kids how to make a thick style bracelet (as seen in the following photo.) Here is how to make DIY paper bead bracelets that look like this!
1. Calculate how much elastic cord or string you will need
Here is the calculation that we used to determine how much elastic cord or string to use. Remember, it is MUCH better to have too much string (which you can cut off at the end) than it is to run out of string (because then you have to start over).
Measurement A – Lay your beads out and measure them like in the following photo. Then, double this number to calculate measurement A. In the photo below, our beads are 3.5 inches. We double that, so our measurement A is 7.
Measurement B – Measure the height of a single bead, multiply that by the number of beads that you have and double it. Our beads are 1 inch tall. There are 12 beads. So, measurement B for us is 12 x 1 x 2 (or 24 inches.)
To get the final length of string, add measurement A + measurement B + 10 inches. So using our example, we cut a piece of string that was 71 inches (7+24+10)
2. Fold your string in half and tie a knot
Take the string you cut in step 1, and fold it in half. Tie a knot to form a loop at one end (as shown below.)
3. Place your bead onto one string
Put your first bead onto one of the strings, like in the following photo.
4. Insert your other string from the OPPOSITE end
Take the other string (that your bead is NOT on), and insert it into the opposite end of your bead.
5. Move the bead to the end, making sure it is centered
Carefully move the bead to the end of the bracelet, and make sure that the knotted loop is nicely centered (as shown below.)
6. Keep adding beads, repeating steps 3-5, until you are done
Continue adding more beads and repeating steps 3 through 5 until you have finished your bracelet.
7. Tie the end off in a double knot
Once your bracelet is complete, tie the end in a double knot. Don’t pull too tightly, because remember, these beads are made out of paper!!!
8. Put your bracelet on & beam with pride!!!
Look at how gorgeous this bracelet turned out!!! The kids were so excited by the final product!
How to Make DIY Paper Bead Bracelets from Magazines
I can’t wait to see how your paper beads turn out!!! Please share a photo of your DIY paper beads and bracelets in our Facebook Group! I am always so inspired by all of our amazing members!!!
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