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Project

Beaded Coasters

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Introduction

Beaded coasters add sparkle to any occasion. To make them, use seed beads called rocailles, which come strung together in bunches called hanks. Make sure your beads are all roughly the same size, so the surface of your coaster remains even.

Use your imagination or the color scheme of your home to choose the color and luster of your beads. Remember that you'll be using a lot of them, so you may want to look for inexpensive beads. A waterproof glue that dries clear is ideal for this process.

Materials

  • Beads
  • Cork coasters
  • Waterproof, clear-drying, permanent-adhesive glue
  • Straight pins
  • Small paintbrush
  • Black felt
  • Scissors
  • Compass
  • Construction paper
  • Pencil

Steps

  1. Step 1

    Carefully remove several strands of beads from the hank, one at a time, by pulling gently on the end of the string, preventing any of the beads from slipping off. Once removed from the hank, tie a slipknot around the last little bead on either end of each strand. You'll need to prepare enough strands to fill up the entire surface area of each coaster.

  2. Step 2

    Coat the edge of a coaster with glue. To cover the edge, pin the first bead into the edge of the coaster with a straight pin. Slowly lay the beads into the glue. Working slowly and gently, slide the beads down the thread as you wind it around the coaster. Keep the string of beads as taut as possible. When you've completed the circle, trim off the unused beads, leaving a half-inch or more of thread. Pin the thread to the cork. Spread some glue on the topside of the coaster, near the end of your string, and tuck in the thread ends there. Let dry for about 15 minutes.

  3. Step 3

    To determine the center of the coaster, use a compass, or make a template by tracing the coaster on construction paper, and cut it out; then fold the paper circle in half and again in quarters. The center of the circle will be the point where the two folds intersect. Set the template on top of the coaster, and poke a pencil through the template at the point where the folds intersect. You have now marked the center of your coaster.

  4. Step 4

    To bead the coaster, spread some glue on the center of the coaster with a small paintbrush. Using a straight pin, attach the first bead of the first strand to the center point of the circle. Wind the strand of beads around the center point, making a tight spiral pattern, sliding the beads forward on the thread, and taking care to be consistent and neat. Gently press the beads down into the glue as you spiral. Make sure the beads don't bunch up too tightly. You may need to use another pin or two to help guide the spiral as you go. When you have reached the end of the strand, pull the thread gently, and pin the last bead to the coaster, leaving the tail of the string to be covered by the other beads.

  5. Step 5

    Apply more glue as necessary, and start a new strand by pinning the first pin on the thread to the coaster. Continue spiraling outward until the entire circle is covered. End by pinning the thread close to the last bead and tucking the tail under the side. Run a small stripe of glue around the edge to complete and to strengthen. Remove the pins, and trim any strands before the glue dries.

  6. Step 6

    To make the bottom, cut a felt square that is slightly larger than the circle. Cover the bottom of the coaster with glue. Press the felt onto the coaster, and smooth it out with your hands, pressing securely on the edges. Using scissors, trim the felt as closely to the beads as possible.

  7. Step 7

    Make sure you wash your brush with warm tap water immediately after using the glue; if you don't, the glue will dry permanently.

Source
Martha Stewart Living Television

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Reviews (20)

  • emdeekay 6 Sep, 2008

    In the materials list it says: "Waterproof, clear-drying, permanent-adhesive glue." After the instructions it says "Resources" and "Gem-Tac glue..." There are other waterproof, clear-drying, permanent-adhesive glues available as well.

  • emdeekay 6 Sep, 2008

    I think you need to read this again. They're not made with cardboard, they are made with cork coasters. The glue cleans up with water when it's still wet but not after it has set. I've made these and they're beautiful. We've been using them every day for months. Try it, you'll like it!

  • CaroleDwinell 6 Sep, 2008

    Whoops. On my screen the material list was not all in one place and I missed that the coasters were cork. Still it would help to put the name of the glue in the materials list (perhaps get an ad from them?). It would also help to note the size of the beads you used. Beads come in everything from 15n n n n to 6n n n n and below. Size 11n n n n is the most common seed bead for most projects I've seen.

  • CaroleDwinell 6 Sep, 2008

    GLUE? What on earth? What kind of glue specifically that cleans up with water but that will take cleaning after the project is finished? With Cardboard PAPER coasters? You must have very neat guests. After putting all that work into this project, what if someone spills their drink? What if it's a milkshake or a bloody mary? How do you clean something with FELT on the bottom? Even if you were able to use a beader stitch w/o cardboard, moisture would leak through when used.

  • emdeekay 3 Sep, 2008

    I would really like to know how many beads are needed for a set of 4 coasters.

  • denisemarti2 3 Sep, 2008

    As an experienced beader, I can think of a number of different ways to create beaded coasters without all the frustration!

  • denisemarti2 3 Sep, 2008

    As an experienced beader, I can think of a million different ways to create beautiful coasters without the frustration!

  • medicjenn 2 Sep, 2008

    Thanks for the advice. Thought i might try it but was wondering of it might be more complicated than they make it out to be. Glad they have comments here. You saved me time, money, energy

  • pammycoon 1 Sep, 2008

    I have made similar coasters, and it is very difficult to keep the beads level, even if you are a good crafter. Who needs a lumpy coaster!! It takes way to much time, for them to end up unusable!! Also mine took forever for the clear glue to dry. Next time I would use decoupage glueand brush over the top to seal them!

  • kimberino 1 Sep, 2008

    I agree, a video would be wonderful for this craft.

  • kimberino 1 Sep, 2008

    I agree, a video would be wonderful for this craft.

  • kimberino 1 Sep, 2008

    I agree, a video would be wonderful for this craft.

  • LoraBeth 1 Sep, 2008

    Why start in the middle of the coaster to cover the top? I'd be concerned that even tho I would be careful as can be, I'd end up with it not being even when I got to the edge. Much rather start at the outside edge and let the 'middle be where ever the coaster top is fulled in. Might even do the edge and just continuel right onto the top.

  • grannyj3 1 Sep, 2008

    Beautiful, but remember these will not work to absorb moisture/condensation! They are gorgeous with stemware.

  • Ximenitz 1 Sep, 2008

    beautiful things :)

  • diefenbaker 1 Sep, 2008

    Sounds great, a wonderful hostess gift. Once again diagrams or photos would be very helpful. In Canada, Dollarama sells beads on the hank for $1, colors are limited, but the primary ones are there.

  • pelican66 1 Sep, 2008

    good craft to mark Labor Day as it sounds incredibly labor intensive..and there are four to make! Perhaps a visual just to actually see how tedious this might be?

  • Kristen86 1 Sep, 2008

    I would love to make some of these for the holiday; however, a visual (aka:video) of someone making these would be helpful in a step by step instructional video.

  • Kristen86 1 Sep, 2008

    I would love to make some of these for the holiday; however, a visual (aka:video) of someone making these would be helpful in a step by step instructional video.

  • Anna_Marie 1 Sep, 2008

    These seem very labor intensive. I am wondering how absorbent they end up being after covering them with all that water-proof glue.