What can I make with semiprecious stone beads, other than jewelry?
September 12, 2017 7:32 AM   Subscribe

I have a LOT of semiprecious stone beads, and some crystal/glass/metal ones, ranging from big and clunky to seed bead size chips. I have made all the jewelry I can stand. What ELSE can I do with these beads?
posted by The otter lady to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (19 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Bead art! Take a look at Marcy Sperry's work.
posted by snaw at 7:48 AM on September 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

This book, Little Bead Boxes, will work for your seed bead sized stuff. If you like the method, you could build larger ones with the larger beads. You could add them to a mosaic or upcycle small home furnishings like lampshades, frames and vases.
posted by soelo at 7:48 AM on September 12, 2017

Fishing lures, if they're not too precious.
posted by paper chromatographologist at 7:56 AM on September 12, 2017

Beaded sweaters, blouses, robes, table runners, candlesticks.
posted by lakeroon at 8:04 AM on September 12, 2017

Does anyone really WEAR beaded clothing anymore, though? Will I be branded a ridiculous retro hippyfart if I wear beaded clothing? (I might be OK with that, but I'd like to know in advance)
posted by The otter lady at 8:05 AM on September 12, 2017

posted by bq at 8:09 AM on September 12, 2017

You can go hard on nail art.
I've been getting really into it lately, and with the right tools you can affix basically anything to your nails pretty durably.
(If you are into this, let me know and I'll recommend some products that have been working really well for me!)
posted by phunniemee at 8:12 AM on September 12, 2017 [2 favorites]

Frames for mirrors.
posted by jeffamaphone at 8:24 AM on September 12, 2017

Beaded clothing is totally a thing, and not retro at all.
posted by snickerdoodle at 8:29 AM on September 12, 2017 [1 favorite]

Beaded curtains. Either a large one for a doorway, or smaller ones for windows (or over a mirror), which would look especially nice with the crystal/glass beads.
posted by fourpotatoes at 8:40 AM on September 12, 2017

the most adorable decorated tchotchke boxes in all the land
posted by fingersandtoes at 8:58 AM on September 12, 2017

Buddhist malas?
posted by Hanuman1960 at 9:17 AM on September 12, 2017

A large one, a smaller one, and some stiff silver wire, plus maybe some findings or smaller accent beads, can make some cool spiders.
posted by amtho at 9:27 AM on September 12, 2017

Beaded curtains for a window.
Beads and fimo decorating old books could be very cool.
For seed beads, crocheted bracelets can be worn in multiples. I know, jewelry, but very unlike other jewelry and uses lots of beads.
posted by theora55 at 9:40 AM on September 12, 2017

Garden sparklers?
Beaded spiders?
posted by sarajane at 9:53 AM on September 12, 2017

posted by Botanizer at 10:08 AM on September 12, 2017

Sets of "wine charms" aka little rings all in different colors that go around the stems of wine glasses or the handles of mugs so everyone at a party can remember their own glass and not all give each other mono (and not accidentally mix their Chardonnay with someone else's Pinot gris) make a good host/housewarming gift and would use up many one-off leftover beads.

If your buckets of beads are translucent, you could do some fun experiments with resin and make some very cool almost stained glass meets Venetian glass looking things to hang in a window, or even make into the shade of a sconce or something, depending on your craftiness.
posted by Mizu at 12:06 PM on September 12, 2017

(all links are search engine results pages:)

Miniature dollhouse perfume bottles and jars

Knitting stitch markers

Beaded knitting or crocheting

(Yes, people wear beaded clothing, at least judging from the popularity of beaded knitting/crocheting.)

Beaded flower sculptures

Keychains or charms
posted by Sockin'inthefreeworld at 12:39 PM on September 12, 2017

Add bits of metal and make windchimes.
posted by patheral at 1:16 PM on September 12, 2017

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