Monday, June 11, 2012

Our Version of Melted Bead Sun-catchers

Last week, I saw this pin and just had to try it with the kids. Since we had a full house today with Bug, Buddy, the 2 year old I do day-care for and two of my nieces I knew we needed some pre-planned activities so I bought some pony beads and got organized. It brought us literally HOURS of joy for children from 4-9 years old. Hours! How many projects can you say that about? Plus they look pretty sweet completed hanging in the garden.

All you'll need is transparent plastic pony beads in various colors.  Cheap is good - I picked up two of the packets below at Walmart, for about $4.50 a piece, so $9.00 total cost for hours and hours of fun.  You'll also need various oven-safe molds in any shape your heart desires.  I stuck with cake bread and muffin pans as I knew they were 100% oven-safe.  You'll also need either a toaster oven outside, or a lot of open windows inside as the melting part of this project is extremely stinky.

You can create a fantastic design (like the one my niece made below), put one or two favorite colors or toss in all of them, they all create different feels - be creative.  The most important part of this step is that the beads are evenly spread, all touching and only one layer thick.



Here is my handy toaster oven outside in the patio (away from children, pets and anything flammable), remember its really stinky when the plastic is melting.  This completed design ready to go in the oven.  



Below it is after it spent 20 minutes in a 400 degree oven.  20 minutes like clockwork.  Since we had four kids all designing, cooking and designing some more, I would literally set the timer for 20 minutes, walk away and check on it when I go the chance.  Worked every time.  Use extreme caution when removing the melted beads, everything about it is hot - put it down and let it cool.



When its cool, they just slide out like butter.  A few times, specifically for the muffin pans, you may need to tap the pan on the side to lessen them up, but they always came out with no sticking.  After they are cool and out of the pan, you get to be creative again.  I have seen people make these into magnets, hanging sun-catchers (like the one below).  To put a string in to hang it.  Use a drill to make a small hole and insert string/yarn into the hole.  Tie it up and you are good to go.



Have fun creating, I'd love to see what you come up with!

12 comments :

  1. You're the best. :)

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  2. This is adorable! So adorable in fact that I had the kids try it with the metallic red, blue, and silver pony beads I had on hand...oops. Just to save someone else the trouble, stick to the translucent ones! We're going to try it again next week :)

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    1. Oh no, that doesn't sound good - what happened?! So curious now...

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  3. Making a rainbow right now for our leprechaun trap! I hope it comes out!

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  4. Do you think i could melt them in the BBQ?

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  5. We made several of these. So nice. We do them on the BBQ so no smell inside. Just on low and close cover. Keep checking often. It only takes ten or fifteen mins:)

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  6. Is there any damage/smell left in the toaster oven or regular oven after you remove the baked/melted beads?

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  7. I'm wondering as well, does the smell stay in the Toaster Oven or do you need to purchase another one specifically for these types of projects?

    Please let us know.

    Thanks

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    Replies
    1. No, it does not leave a lasting smell - I still use the toaster oven every day, but be sure not to drop any beads in the oven, might be a different case.

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  8. http://eaticecreamforbreakfast.com/

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  9. would you be able to use silicone trays??

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It'll be a pleasure hearing your thoughts. Alisa