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Topic: Things to use as beads  (Read 2126 times)
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« on: August 08, 2010 01:09:02 PM »

I love beaded jewelry - small, big, chunky, skinny, whatever! But beads (especially the pretty glass ones) tend to be expensive when you're buying lots of them for multiple projects. So I've been on the hunt for things to use as beads, since you can use pretty much anything you can put a hole in. So far I have:

1. Metal washers/nuts (my dad has a huge workshop and has more than he knows what to do with, so I use some of them as beads)
2. Recycled plastic bottles (I found the tutorial on here about making beads from them)
3. Old/broken jewelry (take off all the beads and reuse them!)

I'm always on the lookout for more, though. Anyone else have any ideas for beads?

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« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2010 11:49:02 AM »

You can make some pretty awesome beads using all kinds of materials, like paper, clay (polymer clay, ceramic clay, paper clay, lots of stuff), felt, macaroni  Tongue. I'm sure there's loads of tutorials around Craftster for the different materials, let me know if you need help digging them up.

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« Reply #2 on: August 14, 2010 11:05:03 PM »

Well, a blouse/sweater at Goodwill is what. two bucks? if you found one with pretty beading. Or even interesting buttons. Check out the melted cd jewelry tutes here, too.
And sometimes the local dollar stores have dirt cheap jewelry that's worth it just to take apart.

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« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2011 06:03:48 PM »

-Newspapers, or if you do paper crafts: take the remnants and put them in a blender to make paper. Just smash together to form beads.
-There's a tutorial for cutting class using a candle, you could try doing that over the neck to make a pendant from that.
-I used to collect broken glass pieces by walking the train tracks. Then I would fry them to crack the inside, and sand the sides down to make it smooth. Makes beautiful and unique jewelry!
-You can make beads from sticks by just cutting them down into small cylinder pieces.
-Christmas tree light bulbs, they make cute beads!
-Shells and rocks will work too, but you need appropriate drill bits for them.
« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2011 12:06:23 AM »

Cut magazine pages into triangular pieces and roll them up to make beads. I also recently found this etsy listing that caught my eye: http://www.etsy.com/listing/64952956/recycled-magazine-disc-necklace-made

The beads on that necklace appear to just be circles cut out of magazine paper, and yet it looks great, at least to me. :]

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