Beading can be a really sustainable method of crafting. Although it can be tempting to get sucked into the realm of brand-new plastic beads (made with petroleum, and using energy and resources in their manufacturing), the savvy crafter knows that there are tons of wonderful alternatives, from vintage beads to beads made with natural materials to beads recycled from unwanted products.
One of the most satisfying ways to sweeten up your bead stash is to make your own beads. Custom-made beads are way expensive, but you can make your own for free, and you have the added benefit of making them exactly the way you want them. Need a five-inch-long bead? No problem! A bead that says “Katie Kittycat” in teeny-tiny writing? You can totally do that!
A bead made out of a colored pencil? Here’s exactly how to make it:
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