September 11, 2007

Plastic Bag Beads

On one of the Yahoo groups I read there was a discussion about beads made out of plastic bags. I thought I'd give it a try. I had a bag with the Archiver's logo on it, so I cut the logo into strips. This way I wouldn't have to color the beads after melting them.

I wrapped the strips around a knitting needle and heated them with my heat gun. Then I rolled them on a piece of clean paper on my table top to smooth them out. The beads tend to be thicker in the center as they melt, so I used a second knitting needle to gently push the thinner ends toward the middle while holding the bead in front of my heat gun. Then I rolled the beads across the clean sheet of paper again to smooth them out. This makes for a more uniform shape. If you're going for the irregular look, skip this rolling step.

I heated again and rolled them in Franklin Opals. A final heating to melt the opals and the beads below were the result.

Because I used the colored part of the plastic bag and I didn't have to paint the beads, I also didn't have to seal them. The Opals took care of that.

Another fun project.


Chris in Oz said...

Hey, Sally, they look great. I joined that group too and wasn't a bit surprised when I saw your intro a couple of days later......

gina said...

I just saw the link posted on the group! Thank you so much as I am the one in Sweden wanting to know how this worked. Someone mentioned using dry cleaners plastic bags, of which I have none but carrier bags are of course everywhere!