This past weekend I spent amidst a large pile of plain wooden beads pondering how one - with a lack of dye - could most effectively paint a good handful or two of said craft material without much frustration or too much of a mess that would keep me looking like a party clown after a double shift.
Deeply philosophical I know.
But some nights it's these kind of questions that keep you awake, tossing and turning.
I don't typically leave the house thinking about the burner, but whether the hotglue gun has been unplugged and tucked away safely. And Christmas shopping requires a budget for craft supplies and gift-wrapping decor rather than actual ready-to-go gifts.
Welcome to the mind of a crafter, everyone.
Sure, I would have gone for a gin tonic, but I was coming down with a cold so that wasn't really an option.
Ok yes, I might be exaggerating slightly, but let's be honest, how do you coat a round object with paint evenly and efficiently without touching ot setting it down to dry? Exactly.
I'll be honest, using dye may well the easiest technique - you simply string the beads, place them in a pot with dye, let them soak up the color, and hang to dry. Not much to it.
But that wasn't really an option. In this case not because I was getting sick, but because of the absence of said dye.
Luckily, I figured it out though. So don't fret! I am more than happy to share my newly found wisdom with you.
WHAT YOU'LL NEED:
- wooden beads
- acrylic paint
- paint brush
- string / kitchen twine
Step 1: Cut a piece of twine to a length of approximately 50cm. Make sure the string has some texture and is thick enough so that the beads won't wonder up and down the strand too much. Kitchen twine works best. To keep the ends from fraying, wrap with some tape or briefly dip in nail polish.
Step 2: String a handful of beads onto the twine, making sure to string two more than need painting (i.e. if you wish to paint three beads, string five).
Step 3: Hold the twine between your fingers as shown above: Hold the string with your thumb and ring finger below, and pinch it between your index and middle finger above keeping the string taught. Keep two beads in between the four fingers, the remaining beads are located on the string above the index and middle finger. The lower of the two beads should rest against your thumb and ring finger as you cover the top half of the top bead using a paint brush.
Step 4: Slide the bottom bead down and away, and a third bead down until it touches the half-painted one. Now turn the string upside down so that you can paint the other half of the bead using the same technique.
Step 5: Keep sliding the beads along one by one while turning the string to allow easier access with the paint brush.
Step 6: Hang the twine to let dry.
I woldn't recommend this technique for painting any large amount of beads as it is time-consuming, but it is great for creating vibrant colors and is a wonderful alternative when you don't have any dye at hand!
Wondering what to do with these colorful little ones? Click here for a tutorial on how to make beaded star ornaments for the holiday season!