Paper Mache Beads – Homemade Beads DIY Tutorial

Paper Mache Beads Tutorial

This is probably the cheapest craft ever.

What you’ll need to make your own paper jewelry:

  • Newspaper, get some of those free ones for extra cheapness.
  • Bowl.
  • Water.
  • Craft paint or whatever type of paint you have at home. As long as it sticks on paper, it’s cool! (Probably shouldn’t use water colour though..?)
  • Varnish, if you want to make your beads extra shiny.
  • Drill. If you have one. Otherwise, punch a hole in the beads while they’re wet with a thin knitting needle and leave them to dry on it. I’ve used toothpicks for this before, but I find that knitting needles are easier to get out once the beads are dry.
  • Nail files for buffering and smoothing out surfaces of the dried beads. This step is not needed but will give the beads a very nice and even finish.

paper beads tutorial step 1

Tear up the newspaper in small pieces and put it in a bowl of water.

Either wait a day or two for the paper to dissolve or blend with a mixer. Some people like to use boiling water to dissolve the paper and then add glue to the mass, but I think my technique works just as well. I’ve never had any problem with beads not holding together because I left out the glue. Check out the links at the end of this post for two very good tutorials that uses glue and boiling water.

mixer

WARNING: If you use the blender for food, you are going to need to thoroughly clean it afterwards and IT WILL GET DISCOLOURED!!!

paper mass

When the paper mass looks something like this it’s ready to shape into beads.

shaping beads

Shape the paper goo into beads. Squeeze out as much water as possible while shaping.

paper mass beads tutorial

Put them on a newspaper and let them dry for a few days.

paper mache diy

Use sand paper or nail files to smoothen the surface of the beads.

Drill holes, paint and varnish.

paper jewelry

DONE!

Here are some other great tutorials on how to make homemade beads:

Paper+Boiling water+Mod Podge= Very pretty earrings at Infarrantly Creative.

Paper+Boiling water+Glue = Awesome looking necklace at A Storybook Life.

Good luck!


Comments

Paper Mache Beads – Homemade Beads DIY Tutorial — 18 Comments

  1. Pingback: Paper Mache Bead Tutorials | I Love Paper Beads

  2. hi..ur beads r pretty..how come they dont shrivel on drying?..mine dont look smooth at all and sanding them is a lot of effort since they r so hard once dry..

    • I think the secret to get them to hold once they dry is to dissolve the paper until it’s a very smooth paper mass. Sanding is a lot of work, use a rough sand paper, that will give you a smooth surface quicker. :)

  3. Pingback: Perle di Cartapesta | Estroo

    • I think as long as you don’t use glue in the paper mass it shouldn’t get stuck. Forming the ball directly on the needle could be a bit tricky though!

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  5. HI there, Thanks for all the great stuff on your blog. I’m wanting to make really large beads for an installation. I’m wondering at the best way to do this. If I molded them in do spheres, I think they would take forever to dry (being so large they would also be quite dense). Can you suggest another technique to make larger beads (think very big, they wold be for a hanging wall installations).

    Thanks!

    Emma

    • Hmmm… Maybe mold paper strips (not mass) onto ballons and then pop the ballon once the paper has dried? I think we did something similar in school. I think we dipped the paper in wallpaper paste and then put them in several layers onto the ballons. That’s all I can think of right now :)

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