Every now and then, I would like to share with you fellow paper bead enthusiasts that I met through Etsy – the place for all things hand made just in case you haven’t heard of etsy yet 🙂 Shelly Rhodes aka MissWooGoo. Her etsy shop is full of really nice paper beads each one of them is Shelly’s creations. She shares with us, how she got hooked on making paper beads like so many of us, and how she makes them! I especially like the Pepsi Paper Beads made out of pepsi cartons.
Shelly gives credit to her mom in her discovering paper beads, in her own words:
“My mom mentioned to me that she had seen a receptionist wearing a necklace that looked like really pretty stones she had never seen before. When asked, the receptionist said that her necklace was made of paper beads. I thought “Wow, that would be neat to do!” and the rest is history!”
“My work area is simply a small kitchen table that I use to cut out, roll, and glue the beads. I mainly concentrate on inch and ½ inch beads, although I am going to give ¼ inch beads a go I think. I use toothpicks to roll the beads, although the bead rollers do intrigue me, and one may very well be in my future! The glue I use is simply Elmer’s regular glue, not the school glue. This holds really well for me, is inexpensive, and gives good results. Almost all of my beads are made from upcycled magazine pages. I am lucky in that the local library generally has a really good selection of the better magazines (I like the thickness of the paper better than the cheaper magazines) that they give away for free in the foyer. So by the time the bead reaches the customer, it has been reused twice. Once by the reader of the magazine, and once by myself using it to make beads. It makes me feel good to know that I am supporting a craft that is kind to the earth, as well as beautiful to look at.” Amen to that!
Shelly is so right! Investment is minimal and it provides hours of enjoyment!
“I coat all of my beads in two layers of polyacrylic varnish. I use polyacrylic because I have to do the coating inside (one of the bad points of living in apartments) and with polyacrylic there are no odors to deal with, so ventilation is not a problem. I string all the beads, and generally dip 6 strings at a time and let them drip dry. I have found that if I make sure the first layer of varnish is completely dry before I dip it a second time, I have better luck with coverage and also with the holes not clogging up.”
“After the beads are dried, they are sorted by color and each one is checked to make sure that the bead hole is open and able to be strung. Then I count each set, take pictures, and bag them up. Then they just wait for someone to pick them from the line-up I have on Etsy. I have had fairly good luck selling my beads on this site, and would recommend it to anyone hoping to at least break even with their craft costs!”
“I love making paper beads. It’s a time when I can turn on the radio, tune out the world, and make an original creation with each bead I roll. It’s an inexpensive craft, and is perfect for someone who has limited space, since the supplies do not take up a lot of room, and the finished product can easily be stored in zippy bags.”
I have recently begun to make hand painted beads on upcycled office paper, so it will be interesting to see how that progresses for me. The possibilities with this type of bead as far as color and design is virtually endless, and that excites me even more!
Patriotic Red, White and Blue Paper Beads
Green Hand Made Paper Beads
To see more of Shelly’s work and get inspired by her beautiful paper beads, head on to her blog: