Thursday, February 19, 2009

Making beads

A favorite activity for the children at our house is making things with beads. Lately they were running low on beads (after making bunches of Geckos) and Mara was wondering when we were going to go to the hobby store. I wasn't planning on making a trip anytime soon and suggested she check into making beads, so she did a little online research and found a clay recipe.


  • 2 cups flour

  • 1 cup salt

  • 2 Tbsp oil

  • 3/4 to 1 cup water

  • And we also added food coloring

Mix together flour and salt. Add the oil and then slowly add the water and stir until you get a nice clay consistency. Then we divided it up and the kids worked the desired color into each lump. After that they worked at shaping them into beads (we used a toothpick to make a hole in the middle but next time we want to use something a bit bigger) and other fun objects. Along with the beads we made some "fruit" for the barbies and I helped Jonathan make some clay Geckos.
Our beads weren't perfect (at all!!) but we think with practise they will get better. The kids really enjoyed the whole process and hope to make some more when friends come over today.

After shaping them all carefully and putting them on a baking sheet they need to bake for around 1 hour at 250 degrees. Try not to make anything to thick as it will have a tendency to crack. You can paint your objects afterwards if you want too.

The "new bead" geckos look a little unique but they are well loved as they are totally homemade!

I thought this worked well for Thrifty Green Thursday as we were able to avoid a trip to the store, use what we had on hand and get by with no packaging. And we had a lot of fun in the process!


Cathy said...

neat idea!! i've been making my own playdough and the kids love it. I wish I had made it sooner instead of buying that stuff from the store.

Joy said...

How creative! I always think of baking salt dough for Christmas ornaments but hadn't thought of using it during the rest of the year. Thanks for joining us this week for Thrifty Green Thursday!

Courtney said...

That is a great idea and so very thrifty!!

Rebecca said...

That looks like fun! I'll bet my three-year-old would enjoy making her own beads. It occurred to me that you could also buy old necklaces at thrift stores or garage sales and take them apart. Then kids could make their own creations out of them.

Thanks for yet another brilliant TGT contribution!

In The Potter's Hands said...

That reminded me that I made beads like that but now I can't remember when. I think they turned out pretty similar to those. I need to make another batch of playdough for my girls. They've been out for awhile now and we never can remember when I have time. Maybe today.

Sarah said...

This is such a good idea! Then the projects truely are homemade!


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