This Christmas, as with the two years before, there had to be an element of hand-made to some of the gifts we gave and my eight year old desperately wanted to make a gift for her Nanna. Obviously Pinterest is awash with DIY suggestions but instead I handed her a couple of our making books to look through and she found these easy to make paper beads.
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The book, The Best of Making Things: A Hand Book of Creative Discovery (affiliate link) is one of my favourites. If you ever wondered where most of the cool things people make on Pinterest come from, there's a reasonable chance there's a version in this book which was first published in 1973. It is such a good book full of different ideas of useful things to make usually from easily sourced materials.
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The paper beads she chose to make as her gift were very easy to make. I just helped her rule up some torn out pages from some magazines. I marked the side of each page in 3cm (or 1") the increments going down the page then I ruled the triangular pieces for her to cut. Try to choose pages with complimentary colours. I only had to rule up two or three pages in total but I tried to only use coloured sections of the page.
To start your paper bead, you dab a little glue on the largest part of the paper wedge. We used Mod Podge to make our beads. For small hands, use a pencil or a lollypop stick to wrap the paper around - something that will slide out of the finished bead easily.
Then you just keep rolling the paper tightly around and around trying to keep it centred by making sure you move both hands at the same rate. This took a little practice to get right but we cut extra paper wedges to allow for any mistakes. We also added a little more Mod Modge along the length of the paper before rolling so it would stay stuck once dry.
They dried quickly and then my daughter threaded them onto a fine piece of thread. She was very pleased with the finished product and her Nanna certainly loved them.
If you liked this post, you might also like my Things to Make board