Make your own Paper Beads

Creating beautiful beaded jewellery got even better with these fun and funky paper beads! They are so simple and allow you to make beads in any shape, size and colour you desire. String them on to a bracelet or necklace with our beads to make a statement.

History of Paper Beading

In England, paper beading can be traced back as far as the Victorian times where young women would create paper beads from old scrapes of wall paper, wrapping them around knitting needles and varnishing them with bees wax. They would string them up to create door coverings to divide rooms.

Paper Beading was then reinvigorated in the 1920s and 1930s for jewellery making, and more recently has been adopted in many African countries, such as Uganda, where women have started their own businesses creating jewellery and other crafts using recycled magazines and printed paper.

What you need:

  • A4 coloured paper – any colour or pattern you like!
  • Pair of scissors
  • 30cm ruler
  • Pen or pencil
  • Skewer, dowel stick or pen/pencil
  • Non-toxic craft glue
  • Paint brush
  • Acrylic clear varnish
  • Glitter glue (optional)



Step 1:

Using your pen and ruler, draw long triangle shapes length-wise on your piece of A4 paper with a base of approx. 2cm. The wider you make the base the bigger the bead will be, so feel free to vary the sizes across paper colours/patterns.


Step 2:

Cut out your triangles.


Step 3:

Wrap the base of your triangle around the skewer, dowel stick or pen/pencil. Depending on how thick your ‘rolling apparatus’ will determine how big the hole in your paper bead will be.


Step 4:

Continue to wrap the paper around your stick – sometimes this can be easiest by lying it down and rolling it along the table. Try and keep the triangle of paper centred.


Step 5:

When you have 3-4cm of paper left, paint some craft glue on the paper.


Step 6:

Roll the remaining gluey paper to finish the paper bead.


Step 7: 

Paint some of the clear acrylic varnish over the whole bead to seal it and create a shiny finish. You can also paint glitter glue over it as well if you’d like a bit of bling!


Step 8:

Leave the bead on the stick to dry. Once dry, slide it off and thread on to a string with other beads to create your own unique jewellery!



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