This idea of making paper beads came to me* because every year we throw away tons of brochures, flyers and other outdated publicity.
Nonetheless, we already reduced theses junk wastes by presenting only one flyer per site, provider, producer… but that’s not enough. So, why not give a second life to these pages by turning them creatively into paper beads? It gives you the opportunity to spend a nice moment of creation – alone, with your family or with friends, it can also be a great idea when the kids are annoying themselves. And with newspapers you can make home-made recycled paper.
To get a good start with this workshop
- Magazines, journals, junk mail, …
- A pair of scissors
- A ruler
- Wooden barbecue skewers
First you trace triangles on the page: leave 1,5 cm from the top of the page, than place a mark every 3 cm. At the other end, there will also be 1,5 cm left. And on the lower part of the sheet, you start at the edge and mark every 3 cm.
Example: I took this brochure 2019 of the Du Rhône aux gorges de l’Ardèche Tourist Office. Of course, we suggest you read it before cutting it in pieces. Its precious recommendations about places to visit, people to meet give your stay in the South of Ardèche an air of slow tourism.
When you have traced your lines linking the points, your cut the triangles that will serve to make your beads. The 1 st and the last triangle are not usable.
Make your first paper beads
Now it gets more complicated! The youngest will have to wait until the beads are ready so they can thread them and make a necklace or mobile.
You now roll the paper triangles around the toothpicks. It’s important to start correctly so that the paper is tightly rolled around its axe, as well as straight, perpendicularly from the toothpick.
To vary the motifs, you can alternate with the backside of the triangle. To finish your bead, you glue the end of the triangle.
«Voilà», your bead is ready, you can start a next one, and the next, as often as you want to, and depending on the creation you want to make. I would love to make a curtain for the door of the reception, but that will need a whole lot of beads. .. I think I’ll rather start with a lampshade!
Alternative: giant paper beads
It is also possible to double the dimensions of the triangles to make giant beads: 3,5 cm from the edge, then mark every 7 cm. Making giant beads goes faster; in this case you use the barbecue skewers. Of course you can use even wider dimensions and make even greater beads, that would be really gigantic.
I’ve use the cover of the brochure to illustrate the tutorial, but I don’t recommend you to do so! You’d rather use finer pages, they are easier to be rolled on the little sticks. Depending on what effect you want to create, you can choose coloured magazines or on the contrary use the white pages of a more serious magazine.
Waiting for the season to start, Jess made a beautiful pair of earrings.
We hope to see you this summer to make your own creations during a workshop at Domaine de Briange.
*but also thanks to a friend of mine who runs a restaurant in Hyères Au fil de l’eau. Each time we meet, she comes up with a new idea! And the last time we met, she was making a curtain of paper beads as decoration of a small window.