How to… make Sand Beads


Sand beadsHello Welcome back to this week’s tutorial: How to Make Sand Beads! That is right making beads, from more or less JUST SAND! I first had the idea whilst having a twitter chat about plaster of paris (don’t ask) and I suddenly wondered whether it was “possible”… There seemed to be “very little” out there. So I had a go! And guess what, it works, brilliantly!

My main “weakness” was the painting – I think as with any beads, it is final finish that really gives it that “something”. And I am not too experienced at bead painting – e.g. getting a nice marbled bead or a nicely decorated bead. Neither am I very good at “mixed media” – I genuinely believe these would look fabulous mixed and matched with say some felt beads…

So.. how to make sand beads:


Sand (sifted) & white glue & a skewer.

Yep, that is it! And you really don’t need much!

how to make sand beads how to make sand beads

1) For about 12 beads, I think I used roughly 6 table spoons of sand & 2-3 table spoons of glue (squirted directly onto the sand). Mix it until it feels like “wet sand” – a bit like that hideous stuff moon sand.. i.e. you can shape it a little by squeezing it gently.

2) Take a small amount -and form into a ball, by cupping one hand & squeezing with the finger tips of the other. You cannot “roll” these like playdough. It is a forming and squeezing process. A bit fiddly at first, but gets easier as you get the hang of it. Try and make them as small as possible (I think mine are approx 1cm in diameter), as they are just too chunky and clumsy looking otherwise (I made 3 attempts!).

3) Use skewer to make the hole. Make sure the skewer is clean. I found I had to wash the skewer and my hands every 4-5 beads.

4) Let dry – it doesn’t take long – a day or so.

5) Paint. I confess, I repainted this about 3 times, trying to work out what look nicest and settled on our metallic paints.. now I would love for some one more bead talented to have a go and come up with a fabulous design or marbling technique!

6) Thread and enjoy! So.. what do you think?

And here is the kid’s Salt Dough Beads inspired version..

And why not visit my good friend Chris over at Thinly Spread for her fabulous “Something for the Weekend” linky?