Chunky Wood Beads

I know summer is right around the corner when I start gravitating toward cabana style sundresses and wood beads.  I recently discovered this inexpensive and fun way to make your own bead necklaces.  The beauty of it is that you can be as creative as you want with the color, length, and the style of beads you choose.  You can find a variety of shapes and sizes here.  See below for what you will need to get started and step by step instructions to make your own.

1.  120 16mm and 60 20mm Unfinished Wood Beads, Powder Dye by Rit, 6 yards of Round Leather Cord (2mm), Polyurethane Spray, Floral Wire
2.  I used Rit Dye Colors in Denim Blue, Tan, Teal, and Golden Yellow
3.  String your beads onto leather cord cut to your desired length to get the exact number of beads you need for 1 necklace.  Then restring the beads onto your floral wire.  Bend the floral wire into a circular shape upward.
4.  Boil 8 cups of water for each necklace.  Mix the boiling water with your desired dye colors.  For the yellow necklace, I mixed 8 cups of water with 2 teaspoons of yellow.  For the greenish blue necklace, I mixed 8 cups of water with 1/2 teaspoon of teal and 1/4 teaspoon of tan.  For the dark blue necklace, I mixed 8 cups of water with 1/4 teaspoon of denim, 1/4 teaspoon of tan, and 1/4 teaspoon of teal.  Wearing rubber gloves, submerge beads 2-6 minutes in the water (be sure you are using a nonreactive bowl or pot) and agitate gently.
5.  The longer they soak the darker they will get in color.  Scoop out at your desired level of color.
6.  Let them dry on paper towels or hang them after they are mostly dry overnight.
7.  They will be lighter in color when they are completely dry.
8.  Then to seal in the color, spray them with polyurethane, following the directions on the can.  After the spray has dried, restring them on your leather cord, knot and trim the ends.  Pile them on and when someone asks you where you got them, feel the pride when you say, "I made them!"

Stop by Thursday to see pics of how mine turned out.  Happy Beading!  Angelia 

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