Saturday, January 10, 2009

Tutorial: Paper Bead Bracelets Part One

This was supposed to be posted on Friday, but our internet was out (AGAIN) and I spent the morning on the phone switching our phone service over in preparation for switching internet service. (We have VOIP phone and wanted to make sure we kept our phone number…) And then we went up north for the Draper Temple open house. (We got a special invitation because Brent is an elected official.) It was so neat, they had a great tour and a little reception at the end with a gift of the “Then Sings My Soul” cd from the MoTab Choir. The very best part of the evening was when we got to shake hands with one of the leaders of my church, Elder Eyring… What a fabuous evening!

Anyway… here’s the tutorial! This technique is SUPER easy. My mom said this is a way old paper art…. she has a necklace made from old rolled up newspapers. (It’s super pretty!) I loved the bracelets at PTI, but I did not like the idea of ModPodge on a wearable item. If you’ve ever gotten something wet that was one ModPodge’d you know what I mean… ewww. I also saw these beads made on a YouTube video by Suse Weinburg, but I did not have the UTEE melting pot. Michael’s has it but it’s $34.99 and I didn’t have a coupon when I was there… Anyway… if you have an old Versamark pad, a heat gun and some UTEE and a little creativity, you’re good to go. :)

I hope you enjoy making these beads and I would love to see what you come up with!

1.) Gather your supplies. I used the following:

s Versamark Pad
s Heat Gun
s Patterned paper
s Spacer beads (glass or metal)
s Clasps & crimp beads
s Wire Snips/Pliers
s Tools for rolling paper (anything long and skinny will work)
s Glue pen
s Ultra Thick Embossing Powder
s Various glitter/shimmery powder
s A mat or paper pad to protect your work surface


2.) Cut long, narrow triangular strips of paper and set aside. The # of strips you need depends on how many beads you will need to go around your wrist. Cut extra pieces for those “oops” moments.

IMG_05564web CutStrips24Web IMG_05594Web


Where’s Waldo? Can you find the pink strips on that marvelous pink mat? LOL!

RollPaper4Web3.) Roll wide end of paper onto whatever you’re using to hold the bead. I switched to wooden skewers (WalMart) in the middle of the tutorial. (The embossing tool actually works great to hold the bead while melting the UTEE later….) Use glue if you need to help secure the paper while rolling. When you reach the end of the paper be sure to use the tiniest amount of glue possible to securely stick down the narrow end. If you have extra glue oozing out it will make a mess in step 5.

TightEvenRolls4Web GlueWhileRolling4web RolledBead4Web

4.) Roll the bead on your Versamark pad and generously ink up the bead.
Make sure all of the paper is completely inked up. Dip into UTEE powder and thoroughly coat. Gently tap off excess.

VersamarkRoll4Web UTEECoat4Web


5.) Heat up your heat gun and hold the bead in the heat. Rotate the bead while the UTEE melts. (This keeps the UTEE from globbing up in a puddle on the bead.) Don’t hold the heat in one place too long or you may also burn the UTEE and it will turn a nasty yellow color.

6.) Let bead cool, then roll in Versamark and dip in UTEE again until you get the desired thickness of coating and desired appearance of your bead. **

Click here:
** Continue to Part Two: Adding Bling & Stringing Your Beads


Jeanne said...

VERY Cool, Erin! I think I could handle to read the rest of the tutorial.

You are SO creative!

Juliet A said...

I never thought to coat my paper beads with UTEE - great idea! I will be trying this one soon!

Creative Reflections said...

Thank you for the wonderful tutorial! I have linked your tutorial to my blog at