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Crimefish's avatar

Painted Paper Bead Tutorial

Exactly how I made this:

SO SIMPLE. :dummy: Simple is as simple does.

You can make the beads as wide as you want. I only used
1cm width because if they were any wider, they wouldn't fit
comfortably on memory wire, or worse, the memory wire
could dig into the beads and damage the ends.
It depends what you plan to use them for!

I copied some of the text from one of my other tutorials,
since the methods are similar.
Credit for the arrow brushes goes to ewanism.

My other paper bead tutorials:

And FAQ:

Paper Bead FAQQ.  Why do you make jewellery out of paper?
A.  Paper is my precious, and we wants it, precious, we wants it.  My sister showed me how to make paper beads when I was a child, and a couple of years ago, I remembered and felt like trying it again.  And now I'm an addict, YAY!  I love jewellery making using any and all materials, but I like the challenge of making a material as basic as paper look elegant.

Q.  How strong are paper beads? Don't they fall apart?
A.  This depends on if and how you seal them.  I varnish all my paper beads to make them hard, glossy, and long-lasting.  The Japanese are famous for making furniture out of paper.  It

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© 2012 - 2021 Crimefish
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pumqin's avatar
super cool idea!
quickly-2008's avatar
Thank you for inspiring me to make my own paperbeads!
Before I had seen your artwork I thought making paperbeads is something for little kids .
But you make the beads look so beautiful I have to try them.
Thanks for the Idea using metallic nailpolish!
Waterwolf11's avatar
So, just to be clear.... do you have to glue the paper as you're rolling it? If not, when do you make sure the paper stays together? 
ZephyrOfStar's avatar
You glue the end and when you paint it it holds the bead together
Love your paper beads! And just started to make some using your tutorial. Must say I am far away for mine looking the same as yours and maybe the will never which is fine ;-) But I really must give you a BIG THANK YOU for sharing your tuts so freely!
YammiYammi's avatar
I liked your tutorial very much and I'd like to translate your tutorial into Russian, so that people from Russian-speaking countries can also make such beautiful things. May I translate it?
I'll write that it's your tutorial and give a link on this page of course!
Crimefish's avatar
Thanks! Of course you may. :)
t0nnii's avatar
W0w, this is really unique!
HelenaRothStock's avatar
Hi there, your stock has been featured here: [link] hope you don't mind :happybounce:
WindsweptSpirit's avatar
I tried making these beads for earrings, and they turned out okay. But after I take them off the stick, are they supposed to be slightly squishy? I was under the impression that they would be solid (like, plastic-y) when the polish dried, but they weren't. They were definitely solid, though. Did I just not wait long enough for the beads to dry?
FieraRosette's avatar
I usually give them a polyurethane coat before and after painting my beads because nailpolish can be acidic and eventually wear down the paper. Also I let mine dry fully overnight before adding another coat or taking them off the stick. It is more time consuming, but I feel like the beads come out a lot better. Another tip is to use scrap booking paper. sometimes i am too lazy or do not have enough time to paint my beads so I use the paper and just top coat with polyurethane to keep them sturdy and more weather proof.
Crimefish's avatar
These tiny ones are quite delicate and should be a little squishy before adding any varnish, but the varnish should harden them. Mine feel like frozen peas. Most of the time, the only difference I've found in leaving to dry is ensuring the finish doesn't get dented by anything while it's still tacky. But there's always a chance that drying time affects their hardness, too.

There are other factors, ie. how thick the paper is and hence how thick the beads are, what kind of polish you use. I find if I'm using a thinner nail polish, or acrylic gloss varnish, the first coat soaks into the paper, and the second and third build up to form a hard shell. For all I know, using very glossy paper may keep the varnish from soaking in and hardening the beads properly.

I'm afraid I haven't tried enough variation in materials and so on, to be very reliable help with troubleshooting. :(
ChristalKitto's avatar
Every Christmas I try to make a gift for the adults in my family. These are what I will make this year. Thank you.
Larkynn's avatar
All your paper bead tutorials and creations are so beautiful! Thank you for showing us how to make them. (I can't wait to make a bracelet for my aunt. She makes jewelry but she doesn't have something made from paper yet.)
areemus's avatar
I love bracelets..i wish i could have this one~
Formel's avatar
I've never even thought about making something like this. Sounds very creative and fun... I have to try it sometime. Thanks for the tutorial and the tips. :D
nancy-keenobie's avatar
Xaifin's avatar
:o Hello! By any chance is that tiger wire??
=/ I just can't figure out what to do with tiger wire X_X; it just seems so useless!
Crimefish's avatar
It's not! Memory wire is springy, whereas as far as I can tell, tiger wire is limp noodle. It doesn't seem to serve the same purpose as most jewellery wire. It doesn't hold its shape at all. As far as I can tell, it needs to be used more like cord. I have a tiger tail necklace / bracelet like this: [link] where the ends are fixed by crimp beads, and there are magnets along the length of the bracelet to help it keep its shape. I've also seen people use very thin tiger tail for earrings and necklaces, where they want something thinner and more delicate-looking than cord, but as strong as possible.
Xaifin's avatar
:) I recently took up beading as a renewed hobby. I used to collect beads when I was little and recently remembered my OCD for buying them. Been making bracelets and earrings and what not the past few weeks. But there are things that came with earring hooks and such, and I have absolutely no idea what they're for let alone what they actually are! Haha I think I got a smidge creative with some of it and just mended it to my needs, though it was likely meany for something else.
It's been a lot of fun, just wish I knew the actual use of half of this stuff :S

:) Thank you for explaining tiger tail for me! ^^
qazak's avatar
that bracelet is beautiful!
IbiteU's avatar
Super interesting. I know what I'll ba making one of my dear friends for next Christmas~
Letta463's avatar
Nice I used this, the picture beads and the charm bracelet tutorials for bracelets for a friend and my sister. They loved them :D
serah-wiggums's avatar
This absolutely gorgeous! :D And helpful, too.
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