Last minute Christmas presents

Still wondering what to get that last aunt, sister or daughter?  Why not make her a necklace?  These shown below are made from egg boxes, wallpaper and magazines.

Necklace made from egg boxes, wallpaper and magazines

Necklace made from egg boxes, wallpaper and magazines

The round beads are simply egg boxes torn up and soaked in water.  Leave overnight and then either using your fingers, or much quicker, a stick blender, break down the mush you have produced as finely as you can.  Press through a sieve to get out as much of the water as you can, add a couple of spoonfuls (or slurps) of PVA glue, mix it in and then form your beads.  Take small bits of the clay like mixture you’ve made, roll it around in the palm of your hand, stick a cocktail stick or skewer through the middle to make the hole and leave it to dry.  When completely dry give your beads a good sanding, one coat of undercoat, gesso or white acrylic and then your top coat of any colour you fancy.  To make your beads look professional you can coat them in embossing powder but this will need heating with a heat gun – nail varnish or any ordinary varnish will do a similar job.  Finish by inserting bead cores at each end and thread them on a lace.  Below is a selection of ‘findings’ including the bead cores that are readily available and cost only a few pence.

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The bead cores are in the middle – they will need a drop of glue to fix and the hole in the bead must be the right size (I find a normal screw driver exactly the right size!)  Findings come in every conceivable size and shape.

You can also make beads by rolling strips of wallpaper, magazine, junk mail or anything you can think of, round a knitting needle – if you taper your final end the bead will have a slightly curved shape. You can make the necklace to suit the person.  A musician?  Make one from old music.  A rambler?  Then use a map.  A keen rider?  Horse & Hound.  The permutations are endless.  But be warned – this sort of making stuff is addictive…….

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Next week – how to make things from old copper piping.

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