How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper

paper mache beads

I love finding ways to turn everyday common items, which would otherwise go into the garbage, into beautiful items that everyone can enjoy!

So… when I came across a gal who was making beautiful beads from recycled newspaper, I had to share the idea with you!

When I saw Helen’s beautiful beads, I asked her if she would mind sharing how she made them. After hearing from her, I realized that the methods used for these beads, were the exact same methods that I have used for several different projects including; costumes, handcrafted paper, and sculpted home decor items. I think what I love about her beads though… is the natural earthy look that they have. Please click on the pictures & visit Helen at her Flickr space!

What better way to pamper yourself than to make something so beautiful that costs nearly NOTHING! It would also be a great way to make some beautiful gifts for less than pennies – while recycling those pesky piles of old newspapers :)

Perhaps you could also earn some extra money by making a nice little business out of your beautiful new creations! I’m sorry… there I go again… always the business mind ;)


paper beads


Step #1 – Gather a small pile of newspapers from the recycling basket.

Step #2 – Rip the paper into small pieces

beads

Step #3 – Put the pieces of newspaper in a large stock pot

Step #4 – Pour enough boiling water over the paper to cover

Step #5 – Allow to sit for an hour or so

Step #6 – Stir the paper to help break it down a bit

Step #7 – Drain as much water out of the paper as you can

Step #8 – Add enough glue to the paper to help it hold together in a ball shape (any glue that is clear when dry – such as Elmer’s, or PVA)

necklace

Step #9 – Roll the paper into round balls being sure to squeeze out as much moisture as you can while rolling (you can make any size you would like)

Step #10 – Let them dry for a few days – rolling them every several hours – until they are completely dry

Here’s a mix of paper & felt beads. I love the look of this mix!
felt beads - and paper bead necklace

Step #11 – Sand each bead down with a bit of sandpaper to remove rough edges

Step #12 – Drill a hole in each bead that is big enough for the material that you want to string them with

new bead necklace

Step #13 – Paint them with left over craft paint

Step #14 – Give them a coat of varnish

beautiful beads made from recycled newspaper

Think of all of the different variations that you could make with this technique! The colors & stringing material possibilities are endless! I think some pretty pink beads strung on black velvet ribbon will be my first pampering self indulgence ;)

And… don’t stop at just making beads!

How about…

– Little hearts for a Valentine’s Day banner, or to grace the front of your handcrafted cards

– Tiny beads to make earrings

– Little snowmen with a coat of cream paint – drenched in chunky glass glitter

– A nice chunky key chain made from beads & ribbon

– Snowballs strung on a ripped piece of homespun fabric – to make a snowball tree garland


Well, I think you will agree when I say that these little bits of recycled newspaper are some of the most beautiful bits I’ve ever seen!



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273 Responses to “How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper”

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  • […] buy some small black beads, but feeling cheap, I googled “homemade beads” and found  How to Make Beautiful Beads from Recycled Newspaper on A Storybook Life. I made my beads far smaller than the ones shown on the site, but they still […]

  • […] Beautiful Beads from Recycled Newspaper from A Storybook Life […]

  • […] Paper+Boiling water+Glue = Awesome looking necklace at A Storybook Life. […]

  • Alice (Allie) Hernandez on February 25, 2012

    I would like to know what type of varnish are we talking about (name brand, where to find)? How do you do the felt?

  • […] : 7. @machoandtough – 8. @espritrecup via bluemarguerite – 9. @stephanielynn – 10. @astorybooklife – 11. […]

  • Bead Making | Pearltrees on February 29, 2012

    […] How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper – A Storybook Life – StumbleUpon So… when I came across a gal who was making beautiful beads from recycled newspaper, I had to share the idea with you! When I saw Helen’s beautiful beads, I asked her if she would mind sharing how she made them. After hearing from her, I realized that the methods used for these beads, were the exact same methods that I have used for several different projects including; costumes, handcrafted paper, and sculpted home decor items. I think what I love about her beads though… is the natural earthy look that they have. Please click on the pictures & visit Helen at her Flickr space! I love finding ways to turn everyday common items, which would otherwise go into the garbage, into beautiful items that everyone can enjoy! […]

  • […] A Story Book Life propose une technique (en anglais) pour fabriquer ces perles étonnantes à partir de papier de […]

  • […] Boiled newspaper beads- these pretty painted beads are made by boiling old newspaper and forming the mush into beads. Their earthy color and rough texture is like no other bead I’ve seen. I found these beads at A Storybook Life. […]

  • BETSY on April 20, 2012

    I’m so inspired! I can’t wait to give this a go. Giant thanks for sharing…

  • Esin patience on April 26, 2012

    I love beads and i wil like to know how to make some

  • […] hemos encontrado en A Storybook Life y iHanna’s Blog y parece que en este caso la técnica consiste en cortar el papel de […]

  • […] 1. The folks at A Storybook Life have  tutorial on making round beads from basically paper mache.  After painting and varnishing, the beads have a very earthy pebble look to them. See the tutorial: How to Make Paper Beads from Recycled Newpaper […]

  • […] Recycled Newspaper Beads from A Storybook Life.* […]

  • […] A Storybook Life, and is very easy to follow. We will summarize, but it is worth checking out her step by step instructions (that include […]

  • Sara on June 13, 2012

    oh GOSH, what a treasure for my eyes … wonder wonder wonderful

  • Summer Crafts For Kids on June 26, 2012

    […] Recycled Newspaper Beads: If you are the creative type and have plenty of time, you might want to try this with your kids. It’s a lot of work but the end result is so pretty and they’d make such great gifts! Moreover, major green points! […]

  • Colette on July 27, 2012

    Your beads are absolutely beautiful! How do they hold up with constant or daily use?

  • Anne on July 31, 2012

    love the beads….. i made a bunch of them myself!

  • […] of crafts you can do with newspaper. I couldn’t even begin to name them all, Paper Mache, newspaper beads, Paper hats, even lovely and functional […]

  • Judie on August 20, 2012

    How do you paint the marbled coloring effect on the beads?

  • […] Here’s one of several tutorials I relied on. You shred newspaper, boil it to a pulp, mix it with glue, roll it into balls, sand them, drill holes, paint, and coat with varnish! THE END. I only took pictures of the last few (September!) steps. […]

  • […] Make Beads! So easy! make paper mushy with water and glue, let dry, paint varnish and poke a hole in them and wha la! beads..these can be seriously pretty and make a great gift! For step by step how to click HERE […]

  • Rush'd Lady on November 10, 2012

    I have an article on my blog on how to make homemade paper, but I don’t let the paper sit and soak. It gets shredded then whirled in a blender. I like these colorful beads! Does she use the funny papers or ads to get the multi-colors?

  • Mary on December 12, 2012

    I learned to make these when I was in the 5th grade and other items from newspaper in the 60’s. These are great looking

  • […] Recycled Newspaper Beads […]

  • […] Recycled Newsprint Beads ~ this looks like so much fun! […]

  • gloria on February 18, 2013

    Eu já havia visto esses trabalhos e nunca poderia imaginar q eram feitas de papel jornal, muito bonito ,vou tentar fazer tbm, jornal eu tenho bastante.

  • kathy morgan on April 6, 2013

    great info. will try this

  • Hazinra on April 15, 2013

    Hi there, what a brilliant idea :) , i like so much this idea..Tq 4 sharing.

  • Marillyn on April 24, 2013

    I really like these beads. I would like to teach some of the kids in my class how to make these. I am a missionary in Honduras and teaching kids crafts to sell locally and elsewhere.

    When you say to paint them with leftover craft paint… what is that? Can I use any kind of paint?

    Hope I heard back from you soon! Thanks!!

    • Pearl Sanborn on May 10, 2013

      Marillyn,

      When I say craft paint, I mean the small bottles of acrylic paints we typically use in crafting, but you could use pretty much any paint you have available.

  • […] Making beads from recycled newspaper. http://www.astorybooklife.com/how-to/paper-beads Instead of cutting strips and rolling beads, create beads from recycled newspaper pulp. Try this […]

  • Jess on July 31, 2013

    These are beautiful!

  • […] How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper – A Storybook Life […]

  • Melissa on November 1, 2013

    Hello, I check your blog on a regular basis.
    Your story-telling style is awesome, keep doing what you’re doing!

  • […] Here is a fun and crafty project that I have bookmarked for summer fun. Making gorgeous beads from newspaper!   […]

  • […] How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper – I’ve already made these! Check – ha! Check my beads out here. […]

  • […] of options that are only limited by your imagination (and supplies). When I came across this post How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper at AStorybookLife.com I just had to give it a […]

  • Rhoda Edwards on February 20, 2014

    The beads are stunning, I love them! will be making some soon. Thank you Karen for sharing this cool idea.

  • Ditty Smit on March 1, 2014

    Dear Pearl,
    I like to show you how things worked out! We sell the chains for charity (Soroptimist International) in our region in The Netherlands. Hope the photo’s come through!
    Thank you very much for sharing this wonderful idea with us!
    Ditty Smit van Damme.
    /Users/smit/Desktop/IMG_4088.JPG/Users/smit/Desktop/IMG_4084.JPG

  • […] How to make round paper beads How to make paper swirl pendantsHow to make rolled paper beads […]

  • Jenn - Simplymoms on June 22, 2014

    This is such a great idea! I would do it to make Christmas tree garlands. I am going to share this link at my forum as well.

  • […] How to Make Beautiful Beads From Recycled Newspaper – […] buy some small black beads, but feeling cheap, I googled “homemade beads” and found How to Make Beautiful Beads from Recycled Newspaper on A Storybook Life…. […]

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