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I am always figuring out ways to turn garbage into something. Soon I will start to give away my projects, as there is a lot of garbage in my world and only so much room in my NYC apartment!

Here is a cool project I tried today. I took a million different versions I found online on how to do it, altered them and created my own style…so far it looks cool, once it dries, maybe I will coat the beads with clear nail polish as well for a shinier look. I will let you know and provide photos!

Paper Beads

What tools you’ll need

Scissors
Different types of paper such as pages from old magazines, used wrapping paper or store catalogs
Glue Stick
Toothpicks and/or straws

What to Do

From your paper collection, select one piece that is about the size of a greeting card or larger, no more than 11 inches I would say.

Now cut long, slender triangles from the paper. The longer the strip, the thicker the bead. The base, or large end of the triangle, can range in size from 1/2 to 1 inch. The entire strip should be no longer than 11 inches. [Make beads of different shapes. Rectangular paper makes cylindrical beads. Triangular paper makes rounded beads. If you use a rectangular strip of paper with a triangle cut out of the middle, your bead will be spool-shaped.]

Spread a thin coat of glue over side of the triangle you don’t want to show. Be sure to leave a small area (at the tip of the triangle) without glue.

Place a toothpick or straw on the base of the triangle with the decorated side facing down.

Carefully roll the paper around the toothpick/straw. Keep the paper tight and the edges even.

Just before you finish rolling the paper, place a dab of glue on the triangle’s tip and seal the end in place.

I spin then every once in awhile just to check that they are not stuck to the straw or toothpicks.

When the glue has dried, remove the toothpick from the tightly rolled paper. You have now made your first bead. You can decorate it with paint or apply clear fingernail polish to give it a shiny finish. The ones I did today I dipped in diluted white Elmer’s glue. I just put enough glue in water to look milky.

I will put pictures up of them once dry. I think I made a few mistakes, like not keeping them perfectly even, but we will see.

Watch out friends and family there might be some jewelry coming in your future.

-Cara

UPDATE

I have since painted my first attempt of paper beads with shiny, clear nail polish and it makes a difference for sure. They are still too big for my taste, but shiny = pretty. Some issues I had were, I didn’t spin the beads enough on the straws, so they were stuck to the straw. I just cut them with the straw inside, which turned out fine and made them stronger. I also had to figure out a way to paint them and a place for them to dry, so I just did this…

and here is the end result.

It was a fun experience and I will make more to show different designs going forward. Exciting stuff. :P

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Reason 53 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
Male chicks are a bothersome expense to the egg producer. Sexers must be hired to pick them out for diversion to expedient deaths. No law protects them as they are dumped in trash bins to die by crushing, suffocation, starvation, and exposure.

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Green Birthday

 

Today is my Birthday, so I thought I would write 3 tips for a greener Birthday.

  1. Let’s start with a no brainer, paper invitations. If you happen to be throwing a real party send out E-vites on-line, not invites via snail mail. You could also make invitations out of recycled stuff around the house and walk it over to your friend’s house. :P
  2. Use washable plates, utensils, and cloth napkins and tablecloths. No more Party City people, so much disposable junk.
  3. Make your own wrapping paper out of stuff you already have around. I sometimes take old newspaper and wrap a gift, but I make a collage out of it that represents the person who I am giving the gift to. It just seems like a waste to buy paper for someone to tear up and throw away. Instead what you could use are old maps, newspapers, magazines, old calendars, spare pieces of fabric, paper bags that you can draw on…multitudes of things to do to be super green. Oh and Gaiam makes seed gift wrap that is biodegradable paper embedded with wildflower seeds. Just plant and water. There’s no waste … just beautiful blossoms that make this wrapping paper a gift in itself.

IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!!!

:D

-Cara

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