Monthly Archives: September 2011

More on Sealing

It is another rainy day here.  Of course that reminds me of the correct sealant for paper beads.  Mod Podge dries hard.  However, I still prefer several applications.  What happens to the bead after the Mod Podge dries is somewhat of a secret kept by many paper bead makers.  Some bead makers may not even use Mod Podge, but something else.  As you experiment, look for something that is non-yellowing.  One product I use is good old-fashion craft varnish.  Make sure you read the label before you buy.  It may not work for paper projects.  Do your homework and research!  The global environment is a concern, but lets face it, causing an environmental hazard inside your home is of the utmost importance.

All of these variations in approach are what makes each bead unique.

Make it Yours.

Janet (janettalk)


Another Mistake When Wrapping Beads

I have never asked other bead makers, but I am hoping this is a common problem, and not just me.

Can you see what is about to happen with this bead?  Do you know what I did?

I let the glue seep inside the bead so that the inside of the bead and toothpick bonded.  Sometimes you can save the bead, but most of the time you can’t.  I kept pulling just to show you the final outcome.

Isn’t that just sad?  I threw it away.  Sometimes you have to look at your loses, learn, and move on.   That sounds good, but sometimes it is irratating!  If I have two beads that are basically a match, and I have a gluing accident, my earring plan will be wiped out. (I don’t mass produce.)  If you are paper-bead making, just beware.

Happy Beading,

Janet (janetttalk)

Paper Beads: Another Way

As I said earlier everyone has their own way.  I do not paint or color my beads.  (at this moment anyway.)  But I found an artist who makes beautiful beads and adds more color to the original paper.  She also seals her paper differently from what I read.  She has several colors, but I chose pink so you could see what I am writing about.  Beautiful, right?

If you are new to paper beads : Note her beads were made from a rectangular piece of paper, not a triangle.

Paper Beads - Pink Script mini bag

You can see other of Gillian’s pieces at:

Gillian’s shop not only has paper beads, but her own artwork.  Visit her shop at the above address.

I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I never thought of adding gold to the end of each bead.

Note:  I feel it necessary to say I am in no way financially attached to this shop.  I am simply offering ideas and examples of creative people.

Janet (janettalk)

Sealing Beads

I begin my bead sealing with the “ever-popular” Mod Podge.  This also takes a while.  Letting it dry in-between coats is essential.  Keeping up with what you are gluing is a task.  I’m sure there are some sophisticated ways, but not me.  I use a styrofoam cone that I marked horizontally with masking tape.  As I coat, I move the bead up the cone.  I hope that little hint helps.  If you use this method, you can start beads at different times, but still know where you are in the gluing process.  Again, give it time.  This can’t be rushed.

Paper Beads – Oops

Just a quick note.  If you are wrapping beads, maintain the same pressure until you reach the end of the paper.  Don’t let go.  If you are using, for example newspaper, this is an exasperating problem. I can’t tell you how many times, in just a flash of a second, everything came undone and I had to start again.


Back to Paper Beads

I’m back to the instructional part of paper beads.  These are pictures I took.  I’m not happy with my camera, but we aren’t going to “go there” at the moment.

Strictly speaking, you only need 3 components to make  paper bead: Paper, glue stick and toothpick. (Remember that everyone does this their own way. You can use something other than a toothpick.)

Carefully, you simply begin to roll the paper, large end first.  Once you finish rolling the paper, glue the tip to the paper bead.  As I have mentioned before, remember to mark the triangle on the wrong side of the paper.  If you look, you can see where I made my line before cutting.

Once you are at the end, glue the tip to the bead.  I’d like to say you’re done, but you aren’t.  Coating the bead is next.

Okay.  The above is fairly simple.  Anyone can do it.  I wish that were true.  If you are making earrings, you need two triangles that have the same beginning width. I can’t tell you how many times I thought I had this right, but it didn’t turn out that way.

What is on the paper that “shows” is important.  Look at my finished bead above.  Now below are beads I made from the same paper, including the new bead.  I like the variation in the bead representing paper, but I prefer they are somewhat alike for earrings.  The second and third bead from the left would not make a good pair of earrings.  Practice and patience are key.

I said this earlier in a post, but I’ll say it again.  There are more important things in the world than paper earrings.  This is something I began to do to help me through a difficult time and I enjoyed making jewelry with the beads.  Even if this isn’t for you,  find your own “therapy.”                              -janettalk

Next: Other problems in making beads.

Paper and Recycled Items

I began recycling paper less than a year ago.  As I have researched, I am surprised at the number of people who recycle using paper.  What people create from “used” paper is fascinating.  Note: Just to be clear, please know I am not financially tied to the artists below.  I am trying to open a world to recycled paper and other recycled elements.

Isn’t this classic car paper purse just wonderful? Heather has made other purses from magazines, but this “classic car” bag just struck my fancy.

Recycled magazine wallet

How about using paper coasters from ? Look at this in detail.  The top looks so even.  It must have been a very slow process….or she knows what she is doing!

Light and Dark. Set of 2 Upcycled Magazine Page Coasters

This bowl is quite beautiful, and very unique.  The creator uses paper pulp from recycled newspaper.   I’m not familiar with the process, but Linda uses the medium beautifully.

Recycled Paper Pulp Collage Bowl Blue and Orange

Obviously I am an etsy fan, (I have my own shop) but there are other places where you can make purchases, or even start your own recycled paper project.

I also found corporations who make countertops using recycled paper.  After reading information from several companies, I want to look at these counter surfaces. It is an intriguing idea.

More later on other people who recycle using paper.  I encourage everyone to buy products made by people who individually create each piece.  There is a ground swell of very talented people who are passionate about their medium.  Your purchase would most likely be unique; and in this world of mass marketing the idea of owning something different is, well, special.