Upcycled Bead Fail

Paper Bead Fail

By Tamdoll

I think the failure here is in my over confidence.  I get an idea, I sit down to make it with a deadline only a day away, and I think I’ll be an expert at the first try.  Yeah, right.

Months ago, I signed up for a “Artful Media” swap with the Etsy Trashion Team – sending only recyclables to a swap partner and receiving the same in return, with the goal of making sellable art with what we’ve received.  As I packed up my paper goodies, I kept thinking “Oh, these papers are great, I’d make beads out of them.”  Because I had that book on my shelf about paper beads.  Because once I rolled a few up and glued them together.  Years ago.  So long ago I had forgotten what a pain it was.

Then I received my swap package.  Not what I expected.  Nice, but I didn’t think the beads could work.  Neither could I think of anything else to make with them.  So, beads it was going to be.  I was determined.

I sat, cut, rolled, glued.  Let them dry overnight.  They didn’t look so bad! They just needed to be sealed.  Since I had only one day till the deadline, I knew resin wouldn’t work, so I pulled out the heater tray thing and poured in powdered UTEE (Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel).

I dipped. The straws the beads were on melted. The beads fell in.

I found some skewers to use to fish them out of the melted plastic and a couple fell through the slats on my deck (I was working outside.)  Did a limbo to crawl underneath and rescue the fallen pieces.. (because after rolling and gluing for an entire day, all I had was a handful of beads and nothing could be wasted!)  If I redipped each one, the powder melted again and I was able to spin them as they dried to be evenly coated.  Then the powder in the tray started to burn.  Everything started getting a yellowish cast.  Maybe they could look like amber?  caramels?  Maybe I should just throw them all under the deck?

What? You want a close up?

Paper Bead Fail Closeup

After these, the remaining beads got a traditional treatment, stamping and embossing with a heat gun to finish them off.  I blogged about it here – so if you really want to, you can read about it and see more pictures.  I ended up donating them (not the ones shown here!) as bracelet-making-kits because after that weekend of making the beads I couldn’t bear to work with them anymore.

22 Responses to Upcycled Bead Fail

  1. Lori says:

    mmmm. looks like mini honey buns

    that probably doesn’t help

  2. tamdoll says:

    Yes, you’re right! If I need play food, they can do a stand-in. Yum.

  3. Wow, I’m glad I’m not the only one who thought they looked like food! My first reaction was: “Yum! Are those … doughnuts made out of baklava?!”

    I’m going to go ahead and assume that they are, and that they were delicious. If we don’t look under the deck, then no one will ever know the truth! ;-)

  4. val says:

    oh yeah, I saw food too! Your comment about throwing them under the deck almost made me wet my pants…too funny.
    Thanks for sharing!

  5. I was thinking they looked like coffee scrolls – definitely tasty!

  6. IntegerClub says:

    Yeah, my first thought was food, too!

    Cinnamon buns, to be exact. Nom nom nom!

  7. tamdoll says:

    So glad everyone’s enjoying this. If I didn’t laugh at myself so much, I think I’d feel guilty laughing at everyone else’s craft fails, too.

  8. Jeri says:

    I thought “honey buns” when I first saw them too. Maybe you considered a failure, but the joy I got from thinking about eating a honey bun was like an “act of untold kindness”. At least these won’t go to my hips.

  9. Mary says:

    I thought you had made hard candy at first! lol.

  10. Notagirlymom says:

    Mary–that’s what I thought they were too. Then I noticed the title “Upcycled Bead Fail” and went..”oh they’re supposed to be beads. Well….foo. Those are som seriously failtastic beads.”

  11. Carey says:

    Orange glazed cinnamon rolls. MMmmmmmmmmm!!!!!!!

  12. Ruth says:

    I thought it was some kind of pastry too – mainly because I read the title as “bread fail”.

  13. Care says:

    They look like delicious little goodies that Red Riding Hood might have in her basket…. You didn’t chuck them, did you??

    How big are they??

  14. tamdoll says:

    They’re about 1/2″ wide.

  15. awsome little beads, I have never tried making any but I thought this year for christmas I would make my grand daughters some felted and polymer beads to make things from. I dont think I will try paper ones yet.

  16. Libby says:

    Sell them to people who buy miniatures for doll houses. They do look like cinnamon rolls. I’d buy them for my doll house.

  17. Pattie says:

    I just found your site today and it is charming. It made me LOL, your hats are very interesting to say the least. I now feel better about my crafting mishaps, which I guess is the point. I’ll be sending all my friends here, keep up the good (bad) work.

  18. I don’t know much about beads, but I’ve done enough craft projects to get really scared when I see something so small, and so detailed. My hands are to cumbersome to craft something so delicate.

    I think you made some beautiful sticky buns, though;-)

  19. harls says:

    dear lord, LOL…I didn’t see what the problem was as I read “Upcycled BREAD Fail”. which made no kind of sense but the initial pic looked like cinnamon rolls..or something sticky & delicious.

  20. Pingback: CraftFail » Blog Archive » Uh, There’s Dog Hair in My Resin

  21. those are great honey buns! oh, they were supposed to be beads? at least you gave us all a good chuckle and were able to donate your results.

  22. Kim says:

    your first sentence describes my life

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