Making Paper Beads

Paper bead making is a fun, eco-friendly craft. What a great way to create beautiful jewelry, embellishments, and decorations using colorful recycled paper such as magazines and junk mail. This is a guide about making paper beads.

finished bracelet
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Paper Bead Bracelet

By ShirleyE 53 48

This simple bracelet is made from colourful pages taken out of glossy magazines. It is easy to make and needs only a few materials. You could also add glitter, ribbons, or sticky jewels at the end to bling it up a bit if you like.

Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet


  • colourful glossy paper
  • PVA glue
  • 1 knitting needle
  • scissors
  • 1 ruler to measure
  • pen or pencil
  • string or cord
  • 1 fastener
Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead BraceletPaper Bead BraceletPaper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet


  1. Choose your paper. It is best to choose pages from the same magazine so that your strips of paper are the same thickness and length.
  2. Paper Bead Bracelet
  3. Decide what length you want each bead to be and measure and mark accordingly. I made mine 1cm each.
  4. Paper Bead Bracelet
  5. Do the same along the opposite edge and use your ruler to join them up. Then cut along the lines to form strips of paper.
  6. Paper Bead Bracelet
  7. Remember when choosing your page, that only one end of the strip will show so it doesn't matter what is on the rest of the paper.
  8. Paper Bead Bracelet
  9. Apply glue to the wrong side of one end.
  10. Paper Bead Bracelet
  11. Stick this to your knitting needle and wind it up. I would recommend a thickness of between 2mm - 4mm. I used 4mm.
  12. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  13. Stick down the other end with more glue.
  14. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  15. Slide the bead off the needle and leave to dry.
  16. Paper Bead Bracelet
  17. If the bead unwinds a bit when you slide it off, just gently press it back in.
  18. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  19. Use a piece of cord or string to measure your wrist and use this to work out how many beads you need.
  20. Paper Bead Bracelet
  21. Arrange your beads in order.
  22. Paper Bead Bracelet
  23. Now you will need to cut a piece of string or cord to use for assembling your bracelet. You could just guess, but this could cause frustration if you get to the end and there is not quite enough. To calculate how much you will need, double the measurement of your wrist (A). Then double the length of a bead and multiply this by the number of beads you are using (B). Add A+B then add another 12 inches or so.
    Now take your length of cord and double it up. Tie a knot near the end to form a loop. Thread your first bead onto one end.
  24. Paper Bead Bracelet
  25. Thread the other end through the same bead in the opposite direction.
  26. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  27. Repeat this with every bead.
  28. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  29. When you have used up al your beads, tie a double knot at the end.
  30. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  31. Tie your fastener on tightly and snip the ends close.
  32. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet
  33. Use a little PVA glue to ensure the knot doesn't work loose.
  34. Paper Bead Bracelet
  35. Fasten together using the loop at the other end.
  36. Paper Bead BraceletPaper Bead Bracelet

CommentWas this helpful? Yes

Magazine Bead Jewelry

By Nelly 12 22

I have got lots of old magazines at home so I thought of making something out of them instead of throwing them away. I remember when I was in high school, one of my teachers taught us how to make accessories from magazines to add a little touch to our costume for the Panangbenga Flower Festival Street Dancing Parade.

Back then, we made it simple because we only wore it once, but now I add some things to it. I don't really know anything about jewelry making, but I learned the basics from YouTube. I am so satisfied with the outcome of my first jewelry project.

Approximate Time: 45 minutes to 1 hour


For making beads:

  • old glossy magazine
  • scissors
  • ruler
  • pencil
  • toothpick or blunt needle
  • glue
  • clear acrylic paint or nail polish

For the earrings:

  • 2 headpins
  • 2 eyepins
  • 2 fish hook ear wires
  • 8 small glass beads, 2 small magazine beads, 2 big magazine beads
  • wire cutters and chain nose pliers

For the bracelet and necklace:

  • magazine beads
  • thick cotton yarn (3 or 4 ply), elastic cord, or string wire
  • clasp
  • loops
  • blunt needle
Materials for making beads, magazine, glue, scissors, nail polish, etc.


Making the beads:
Note: If you want a longer size beads, make the base wider and if you want shorter beads, make the base narrower. If you want wider diameter size beads, use thicker paper magazine and vice versa.

    thin strips of magazine cut into long skinny triangles

  1. The appearance of the cut magazine should be triangular in shape. Measure the base for your desired size of beads and mark it with a pencil. Draw a line from that mark you made up to the tip of the magazine. Then cut.
  2. Roll the cut magazine onto the toothpick or blunt needle from the base to the tip. Secure it with glue.
  3. rolling magazine strip around a toothpick

  4. Paint all the beads you made with clear acrylic paint or nail polish to make it shiny.
  5. rolled magazine beads

    Caution: When using the nail polish, use a mask because the fumes are so strong.
    *You can use any paint color you desire. I did not use colored paint on my beads because I used multicolored magazine pages and I liked it the way it is.

pliers and earring assembly laid out on a table

Earring assembly:
Lower part (make two)

  1. Using headpin, string a small glass bead, small magazine bead, and then the other small glass bead.
  2. headpin wire with small glass bead small magazine bead and another small glass bead
  3. Use chain nose pliers to bend (90 degrees) the headpin wire just above the last bead.
  4. Lay the bent wire parallel to your thumb nail, towards you. after bending headpin wire 90 degrees
  5. Then use the chain nose pliers to roll the wire away from you to make a loop.
  6. wire hook after bending loop in headpin wire
  7. Don't close it completely yet until you have put/inserted the lower loop of the upper part of the earring you will make.
closeup attaching larger bead to hook on bead 1 with hook open

Upper part (make two)

  1. Using eyepin, string small glass bead, big magazine bead, and then the other small glass bead.
  2. Do the same procedure you did in lower part (step 2 and 3).
bead 1 attached to larger bead hook closed
  • Then insert the loop of your fish hook ear wire into the upper loop of the *upper part. Close loop. headpin wire inserted into ring on fish hook ear wire finished pair of earrings

    Bracelet assembly:

    1. Measure your wrist so you'll know how long a piece of cotton yarn you need, but add an extra 1.5 to 2 inches on both ends before cutting. (You need the extra in tying a knot into the clasp and loop.)
    2. String the beads.
    3. Put clasp on one end and loop on one end. Tie a knot 3 to 4 times to make it stronger. Don't cut the excess yarn. Use blunt needle to hide it into the beads.

    4. Note: I used thick 3 ply cotton yarn as an alternative because I don't have string wire. I think string wire is more durable. You can also use elastic cord (for this, you don't need clasp and loop).
    finished bracelet

    Necklace assembly:

    1. Cut a piece of cotton yarn according to your desired necklace length. Add an extra 1.5 to 2 inches (same as in bracelet assembly).
    2. Repeat steps 2 and 3 of bracelet assembly. I did a 24 inch necklace
    complete set, necklace, bracelet, and two pairs of earrings

    By Nelly from Estacada, OR

    CommentWas this helpful? Yes

  • How To Make Paper Beads

    By Aysha 44 11

    Making paper beads is an easy, fun, and timeless craft activity. You can use the beads for jewelry, decoration, or anything else you usually use beads for. This is a great way to recycle paper, especially all that useless junk mail that piles up.

    Paper Beads Bracelet Finished

    CommentWas this helpful? Yes

    Paper Bead Jewelry

    By Pamela 14 4

    Craft lovely jewelry from beads you hand make using paper or fabric!

    Making Paper Beads Finished

    CommentWas this helpful? Yes

    Tip: Make Beads From Junk Mail

    I make beads out of junk mail and make friendship bracelets with them and they are easy to do!

    • Use only the shinny paper that comes in the mail and cut or tear it in strips approximately 1/4 to 1/2 inch by 2-3 inches.

    • You will also need a toothpick and glue. Take the strip and rub it between your fingers with the toothpick until it is wrapped almost completely around toothpick and add a drop of craft glue to the end and continue rolling through your fingers until it forms a bead. Set aside for 10 to 15 minutes (which gives you plenty of time to make more) and allow to dry.

    • Then take string, thread, cord or elastic and bead to desired size, and voila! You have it a homemade friendship bracelet!

    This is a great kids project, or if they are not around, I send them to my grandchildren!

    By Denise from Mcrae, GA

    CommentWas this helpful? Yes

    Question: Making Paper Beads


    I want to make my own paper (or whatever you might suggest that doesn't cost a ton and use $75 worth of product) beads to incorporate into crocheted jewelry, but I don't know how to start and what to use. Please help. Thanks.

    By Linda from Stony Creek, NY

    AnswerWas this helpful? Yes


    Most Recent Answer

    By DeBushe 19 163 Flag

    September 8, 2011

    You might try making your own polymer clay beads. You can usually get the clay (Fimo, Sculpey, Premo, etc.) for about $1 each in many bright colors and there are numerous web sites to tell you how to use it. Just google polymer clay instructions.

    ReplyWas this helpful? Yes

    Question: Making Round Paper Beads

    By Patricia R. 1

    I'm new at this, and I'd like to know how to make the round paper beads. I can make the others, but not the round ones. Are there square ones too?

    By Patricia

    AnswerWas this helpful? Yes

    Crafts Recycled Crafts JewelryFebruary 13, 2012
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