August 4, 2010

Paint, Stamp, Cut, Glue, Wrap = DIY Fabric Beads! PART 1

I love beads. And I love fashion. Which means I love fabric. I also love painting. And I really love Mod Podge. I am not sure why it took me so long to put it all together. I present to you - FABRIC BEADS!

In attempt to make the most unique, and most Bead Up-worthy beads out there, I figured I would start with painting/stamping my own fabric. I started with very plain, white cotton fabric and used one of my scrapbook stamps with Chinese characters on it and stamped away (I was going for the newspaper print look):

Then I painted half of the white fabric with some very bright lime green fabric paint and stamped away there, too (and let me tell ya, that stamp with all it's individual grooves was a *&^%$ to clean!):

And while I had the fabric and all, I needed somewhere to glue it all on! Though I could technically wrap the fabric around a form (like a straw, for example) and glue the heck out of it,  I knew such a method wouldn't produce a big and bold look I was going for. After searching all around Michael's, I finally spotted some big ole' wooden round beads in the wooden doll section. I also found exactly what I hoped would exist but wasn't sure it did: Fabric Mod Podge!

Next, I cut the green fabric in small pieces and glued the back of each strip:

And slowly but surely I came up with this:

Since I only had 4 of the big wooden beads, I needed another form of sorts to wrap the bead around. Rather than running back to the store, I remembered this semi-ugly set of beads from a torn-up plastic necklace I bought at the Studio Sale at Warner Brothers last year (which I have used in a piece before):

And after wrapping and gluing the fabric around the plastic and the wooden beads, I had these:

Which lead to this:
Chinese fabric, Cinnabar, Coral, and Agate Necklace, $25

And this:
Chinese Fabric, Cinnabar, and Agate Necklace, $30

And this: 
Chinese Cinnabar and Fabric Hanzi Bracelet, $16

And I totally didn't stop there. In fact, I made all kind of additional fabric necklaces and beads... but you'll just have to wait until the next post to see 'em (or you can check out my Etsy shop and take a peek in the meantime)!


  1. That looks AMAZING! I love it!

  2. That's really cool and unique!

  3. How cool! thanks for sharing the technique and what you made!

  4. Those are fabulous! Great creativity! I do kinda like the ugly disco ball beads though ;) I'm the gal that goes for the gaudy, ug stuff :) Job well done!

  5. ok, I'm going to try this. It looks like fun.

  6. Those are really cool! What a great creation.

  7. out Martha Stewert cause here comes Christyn! I love this idea, I never ever would have thougth of it. Well, mostly because I dont have a single creative bone in me but whatevs.

    Looks fabulous :)

  8. What a great idea! I love the lime green :)

  9. When I first saw these, I immediately couldn't get over just how much you rock! Love that you've combined fabric, paint, and stamping with your jewelry design!! ( thing you know, you'll be designing the clothes to show off these babies with!:>)