How to Recycle Magazines into Jewelry Beads

Christmas Crafts, Crafts For Kids, Paper Crafts

How to recycle old magazines into paper jewelry.

Remember those rolled paper beads made from your mom’s recycled magazines? We used to make those beads in first grade. They were excellent beads for an easy necklace as a Mother’s day gift.

They still are excellent, but some ‘upgrading’ of this craft has been long overdue. What’s the difference? The difference is in the detailing, e.g. the colors, the glazing, the in-between beads.

Recycled Magazines Jewelry

So, rather than recycle those old magazines by putting them on the curbside, make BEAUTIFUL paper beads with those magazines and string them into a necklace.


Basic Paper Bead Making Technique

    Making Recycled Magazines Jewelry is easy.
    What my kindergarten and first grade teacher made us do:

  1. First day: collect old magazine pages / rip pages out of old magazines if you haven’t already done so.
  2. With a ruler, mark long triangles across the magazine pages
  3. Cut the long triangular strips
  4. Dip them in a glue (household glue, Mod Podge, or wood glue) solution
  5. Roll them around match sticks and let them dry.
  6. Next day: string your paper beads into a necklace,
  7. and add a ‘Happy Mother’s Day’- tag.


Enhancing The Craft, From Good to Great

    Now, to elevate this oh-so-simple project to some level of greatness, what I suggest is to have a bit of a design plan before you begin. Your jewelry design plan should include:

  1. Desired length of your necklace
  2. Decision on the appropriate width of the strips to befit that kind of length
  3. A color scheme
    kid craft making paper beads and jewelry, with adjacent or complementary colors from the color wheel
  4. Selection of matching beads to go in-between the beads you’ve just made from magazine pages. And/or select some feature beads. What you’ll need depends on your jewelry piece.
  5. When they have dried, apply two layers of glitter glue to your recycled magazine beads to give them that lovely glossy shine.


Here, I chose magazine page colors and necklace details that befitted a young girl. You can replace those to befit the person who will be the lucky recipient of your necklace.


Jewelry Making Supplies & Materials Needed

    Old magazines pages. Choose magazine pages that are full color for best results.

  • Shiny spacer (or feature) beads
  • Simple wood glue, mixed with some water
  • A box of matches
  • Scissors
  • Elastic band in a matching color to your necklace. I choose pink.
  • Glitter glue and/or glossy acrylics varnish


Tip: before you tie the final knot on your string, stretch your elastic band a notch or so. Elastic band has the tendency to weaken over time. If you pre-stretch a bit, your necklace will look great for some time to come.


Voila Your Lovable Paper Bead Necklace.

What I particularly love about this necklace is that…

* It is child safe given the type of elastic I’ve used

* It is so light to wear, you won’t notice you are wearing it

* The feather-lightness of these beads, combined with their strength, make them suitable as earrings and ideal as spacer beads for a necklace or bracelet with heavy semi-precious stones

* It’s easy, fast, and free! What a great way to recycle old magazine pages!

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