Paper beads -- hits and misses

A while back (before I got the bead-making tool described in my previous post), I made several different bracelets using hand-rolled paper beads and memory wire. Some worked and some didn't. Time to review so I can avoid past mistakes and repeat successes.


This is my favorite paper bead bracelet, made from glossy magazine pages cut with scallop-edge craft scissors.
I like the shades of the beads themselves, and the metal spacer beads add to the exotic feel. The glass beads complement the colors in the paper, and they shimmy as my wrist moves (I feel like a belly dancer).

This next bracelet is a bit more conceptual, an homage to my love of books, words and reading. I used only the black and white text pages from another magazine.
Dangling between each paper bead is a metal letter cube (arranged in alphabetical order), and bright red beads separate them. I like to look at this bracelet in my jewelry tray, but it loses its punch on my wrist. Maybe it gets lost on my pale skin. It may just be a bit too tight. I think it's worth another try.


This is one of the first paper bead bracelets I made. I was already playing around with board games, and I needed a way to use the piles of Monopoly money I had acquired (still do).
I don't like all the black printing, but if I'd used the other side of the "money," it would no longer be recognizable. The beads would be plain pink, blue, white and green. Maybe if I used black beads instead of the semi-transparent (cheap) plastic colored ones? And I shouldn't have mixed beads with different edges. Just straight ones would work the best, I think.

Finally, my biggest "miss." But definitely worth the effort.
Can you tell where the paper comes from? The "purr" charm should give you a hint. Each bead is a label from a can of Friskies cat food. My 3 cats go through several cans a week, and I'm always looking for ways to reduce all the waste. Paper beads made sense, I thought.

And the can lids would make cute charms. I took out my metal snips and punches and started working. The only thing I didn't take into account is how sharp the edges of the charms would turn out. They make the bracelet dangerous to wear, unfortunately.

But I might try this idea again, sans charms and perhaps cutting the labels to produce a different shaped bead. (Here's a handy chart and detailed instructions.)


  1. Even the misses are very fun. And your new bead making machine (from previous post) is a real find to speed up the process - what a fun find!


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