We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again – save all that cardboard from the recycling bin and turn it into an upcycled craft instead! Today we’re repurposing corrugated cardboard and turning it into beads using the channels inside the cardboard as a channel for the string to go through. Painting round beads can sometimes be a little tricky, especially for youngsters, as the beads roll all over the table. These flat beads eliminate that problem completely.
You can literally use any color scheme you like to create an entire collection of homemade custom beads. Use the finished beads as oversized necklaces, bracelets, charms, or even turn them into a garland.
what you need:
- Acrylic Craft Paint
- Corrugated cardboard
- Craft knife
- Cutting mat
- Wooden skewer
Paint a pattern onto corrugated cardboard. Get creative with this and play with different colors and patterns! We used shades of green and blue and tried different stripe patterns. Paint as much cardboard as you like and let dry. Once the first side is dry, you can also paint the back if you like.
Once dried completely, use a craft knife, ruler, and cutting mat to cut the cardboard into beads. We made ours just over 1″ wide and cut them into strips first. From here, you can cut the long beads into shorter segments. Ours are all different sizes, but you can measure yours to make them even if you like.
Important to remember: when cutting the cardboard into strips as shown above, remember to line up the length of the ruler to match the corrugation of the cardboard. The channels inside the cardboard is what we’ll be using to string through later, so keep this in mind when cutting.
Tape the end of a piece of string the pointed end of a wooden skewer. The skewer will be acting as an oversized needle for threading the beads! Simply thread the skewer (and attached string) through a corrugated channel on the first bead. Make sure that you pick a channel that is completely sealed – if not, the string will pop out of the open side of the channel.
Continue adding beads onto the string until you’re happy with the length and cut the string on both ends, removing it from the skewer-needle. To make another string of beads, simply repeat this process, retaping another piece of string onto the skewer.