Based on what I have seen and read in other places, I recently sealed my beads differently. I dipped my beads in watered-down glue.
The supplies I used:
Small disposable plastic cup
Approximately 10 inches of tigertail
One medium size jump ring
Glue (I am a fan of Mod Podge.)
Something to stir with
-In disposable cup, water down glue into something close to a slightly thin cake batter
-Make enough so that bead will be covered by glue
-Tie jump ring to one end of tigertail
-Put one bead on tigertail (jump ring is stopper) and slowly lower into glue
-Leave in long enough to get thoroughly wet, but not soaked
-Since I was experimenting I used two slightly different methods of finishing
1. Let the bead drip for a bit and then carefully place on wax paper
2. Let the bead drip and then very lightly take a wet paper towel remove excess glue and place on wax paper
Either way, I kept the beads moving after they were dipped. The little rascals will glue themselves down to wax paper if left alone.
The outcome was good either way, albeit messy. I ended up with glue on my hands and nails. With practice and more of a factory-line approach, this may get better. However, knowing me, it is going to be messy no matter what.
The sealant from this dunking still needed more layers according to my own sense of appropriateness. Initially, I tried this dipping method because I thought it would be a better way to seal the paper inside the wrap. It is. However, I have torn that theory to bits when I started to add more layers of sealant via a brush. Again some smaller beads would stick to the toothpick. Beads could easily have had their “insides out.” (See pictures from my blog, September 26, 2011.) Grrrrrr.
I’m thinking the best way to seal paper beads using this method is to either submerge, dry, submerge, dry, etc. Or, make dipping the last step.
We learn as we go.
When it comes to paper beads I am a “work in progress.” I wanted to make small paper beads to use in place of metal spacer beads. So far so good. When I started, the aggravation began. Maybe others find them easy, but I have to say, thusfar, they deserve the Most Difficult Paper Bead award.
The beads are so small that gluing/sealing them was an almost impossible task. The paper would stick to the toothpick, glue and varnish would be all over my fingers, counters were not safe. They are now complete. Fin-a-lly.
Have fun with your own projects,
Before I added my last post I knew trouble was ahead. How could my paper beads follow Janna Syvanoja’s beautiful work?
I am avoiding that and instead adding the work of Holly Anne Mitchell.
Based on a search of the internet I believe that the above necklace is probably her most famous piece. However, the paper bead necktie below may be my favorite. It is so creative and detailed. It must have taken a tremendous amount of time. Before this, I never thought of using paper beads for neckties. (and I am confident this is something I will not try!)
I would be remiss if I didn’t include the link where I first read about Ms. Mitchell. She was written about in Michigan Today, University of Michigan.
Copyright related issues are always a concern. I am not asking to copy their work. It is my own curiosity. I’d really like to know how Janna Syvanoja makes those smooth cuts and folds for her paper jewelry, and how Holly Mitchell added the tube beads to the above necklace.
[I have to ask, do these two ladies humble you as much as they humble me?)
The new year is around the corner. I’m weighing what is next for my recycled paper beads. As I have said before, there are a lot of more important things in this world than recycling some paper each year. But this is something I enjoy. The creative aspect and thinking through a project is good for me. (And I hope you.)
A fairly large map was in one of the magazines my Dad gave me. There is a lot of black. I’m considering making many black beads of different styles. One issue is making a bead in black can go wrong so easily. I simply can’t always see the lines as I put the thin, black paper on a toothpick.
I look at this paper and see so much potential. I also see questions. Will I be able to create something unique? Will anyone be wearing this paper in the next year? How much time will it take to make interesting (dare I say beautiful) beads from such a large piece of black paper? And the true ultimate question for all of us, What Will 2012 Bring?
Christmas is just a few days away. In a word: Yikes!
There is so much to do, that I have been a delinquent jeweler and blogger. I am trying to clean and organize my house for guests and the paper beading supplies that I have in abundance are a real clutter problem. How do you organize?
Honestly, I don’t think it is possible. My best guess: I organized loose paper (C)by color and magazines (B) got their own box. The long strips of paper (A) that have been cut are the problem. There is no way to make it neat. Or even “neatish.”
Now I have to figure what to do with this since I organized? Hmmmm.
It is ironic that I began paper beading to use some of the paper lying around to make something beautiful from “pre-enjoyed” paper. But now I have an even larger collection of paper because of paper beads.
Think creatively, (even about storage)
This is a quick fix to a paper bead after it has been glued. The situation: After a couple of days of adding mod podge, varnish, etc, I notice the following bead had a rough spot along the edge. It doesn’t happen very often, but when it does there is an easy way to fix it. Take the gentle side of an emery board and file the spot down. In my case, the spot along the edge could only be done in one direction. If I moved the emery board back and forth it would only make the spot worse. One way filing!
Now the bead is smooth as glass. There are enough sealants on this bead, that it doesn’t look like it needs anything else done to it, but I am going to add one more coat of varnish just to be on the safe side.
I want to encourage everyone, no matter what your art form. Don’t be afraid to correct a problem. Use your best guess on what would properly fix it and try. Take it slow and go for it!
While watching TV tonight, I made another bead. The hourglass bead is an interesting shape and worth a serious try.
My Experience: It took longer than normal, even though I realize this is a new process for me. Adding the glue during the bead creation made for a bit of a “sticky” situation. I call it an hourglass bead, because that is the closest comparison I could make to the final shape. My camera was not “happy” as you can tell by the last photograph.
I saw the template for this bead on the internet. Naturally, I didn’t read the directions. 😉 This is what I did:
1. Cut a one inch strip.
2. Folded strip in half lengthwise.
3. Took a ruler and marked folded strip so there are two tapered legs.
4. Cut with scissors while holding paper fold together.
I began by rolling this on the solid side. As you continue, the legs come into play. Both sides need to be rolled at approximately the same speed. At the same time, make sure the straight line of the outside edge stays on “itself” as you continue. In other words, don’t let the legs move toward the center. I occasionally had to glue in order to keep the paper in place. Even though it was not quick, I like the end result.
There is a pending question: Can two matching beads be made? (for earrings.) Hmmmm.
As of late, I seem to be in a “paper bead shape” mood. Yikes. I hope it is useful to you in someway.
Yesterday I decided to make beads that were not such a dark color. Something that was pastel and “happy.” Unfortunately it seemed to a bad rolling day. (Is that even possible?!) No two matched and since I am using scrapbook remnants, running out of paper. Changing things up may help. Instead of going to an internet template, I went free form. Try it yourself. You could come up with a shape that is “gold.”
You can see from the picture above, that most of my beads are fairly regular in size and shape. Now take a look at Bead A. At first I didn’t see anything special. Suddenly I realized that Bead A would make a wonderful dangle earring. There is my “gold” in the experimentation. Can I make a second one? I’ll find out today.
Even if it is a little thing like paper beads, don’t be reluctant to try something new. Sometimes flying without a net is helpful to the creative process. No matter what you do, try to find your own gold.
When it comes to shapes of beads, I found this blog that includes bead templates. I also thought it was very funny when I read how she thought she had come up with something original when she decided to make paper beads. She then discovered, and I quote, “not so much.” Carole Anne’s blog. Third pic down. (and I can’t believe I am sending you to another’s blog, 😉 but seeing the template will be helpful to you.)
Yes. Making paper beads is not an original idea for any of us. However, finding these odd shaped beads is rare. Also, making paper beads is absolutely not a “cookie cutter” art. Each bead is different. In a way, each bead is original.
I may try one of these shaped beads. I’ll let you know. In the meantime,
After some thought, I believe I make five different shaped paper beads. I don’t know the official names, but here they are:
With my own names: Back row: roll, round, saucer; Front row: cone and….traditional. If you are new to paper beading, this picture may help you decide what works best for you. The first question is, “How do you plan to use them after they are complete?”
There are more bead shapes that I have never attempted. Before experimenting, I’ll ask myself the same question as above. Will my jewelry style work well with the new shape? I’ll keep you in-the-loop.