These DIY glow in the dark perler bead earrings are the perfect craft project for Halloween, but you can really wear them any time of year.
Perler beads came into my life around years ago when ago when a friend handed down her family’s collection of beads. Her kids had outgrown the indoor activity and she wanted the beads to find another home.
Even then, I was late to the perler bead party and the projects we did were still fairly one dimensional using smaller beads with patterns or freeform designs that we fused together with an iron.
We stayed in, what I’ll call, the “basic stages” of perler bead crafting. And using all the different colors and patterns in the various designs worked for me.
Perler Beads Come in Different Sizes
I learned that perler beads come in two different sizes: “biggie” and regular.
And not only are the biggie perler beads a decent amount bigger than the regular size beads, but they melt into discs!
I won’t call it a *mind blown* moment, but it did open up a whole host of possibilities for additional crafty projects.
Since a melted bead has both a flat side and a domed size, you can use these beads as buttons or a colorful addition for scrapbooking or frame decoration.
The most exciting of the ideas I had, however, was making jewelry.
First on my list? Make a pair of spooky earrings to send to a friend who loves Halloween.
Designing Spooky Perler Bead Earrings
Whenever I start working with a new material, I like to make the initial project as straightforward as possible.
I also prepare a lot of the new material at the beginning in case I mess up or love it so much I decide to make something in batches.
For this first attempt at making perler bead earrings, I added as many bead pairs as I could to the baking tray to have a variety of colors available.
I stared at them once they were done melting, and inspiration struck.
I kept thinking about an SVG I had created inspired by The Princess Bride quote, “I’m not a witch, I’m your wife.” The witch would be perfect for Halloween earrings!
All I needed to use were plain orange biggie beads and a vinyl decal of a witch as the embellishment. (My trusty Silhouette Cameo was, of course, up to the task.)
I was thrilled with the first pair. I was still curious, however, about what else I could do with biggie perler beads.
After all, there is a BIG hold in a middle of the bead. So, what would happen if I plug it up with a smaller bead?
My bead stash had both regular color beads and some different colored glow in the dark beads too.
This could be fun!
10 Simple Steps To Make Glow In The Dark Perler Bead Earrings
Once again, I tried melting different variations to see what would happen to the beads. I tested beads based on their color and size.
And the glow in the dark beads looked good after melting. I had a winner!
After making your first pair of perler bead earrings (that glow!), it’s hard to stop.
Like me, I imagine you’ll start creating all kinds of jewelry with this new technique.
- 2 black "biggie" perler beads
- 4 glow in the dark perler beads
- 2 earring posts
- Super glue
- Small toaster oven or kitchen oven
- Baking sheet or flat oven-safe metal surface.
- Parchment paper
- Cooling rack
- Cover a small baking sheet or oven-safe tray with parchment paper.
- Set the oven to 350 degrees.
- Place the black biggie beads on the tray.
- Place two of the smaller perler beads inside each of the big perler beads.
- Place the tray inside the pre-heated oven and bake for 45 minutes.
- Remove beads from oven and place on the cooling rack.
- Let the beads cool for at least 10 minutes.
- Follow the glue manufacturer's instructions to place a drop of glue on the back of each bead.
- Set an earring post onto the glue dot on the back of each bead.
- Let the glue cure according to the manufacturer's instructions.
- Using a black biggie bead allows for the best contrast.
- The color of the glow in the dark bead can be anything you want.
- You can choose to use two different colors for the smaller glow in the dark bead to let them blend a little bit and have a funkier look the earring.
- Remember that glow in the dark beads need to be "charged" so hold them under a light to start their glow.
- After gluing the earring post to the back of the bead, don't mess or fuss with it. Just set it aside and let the bond strengthen according to instructions.
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Perler Beads Biggie Beads Fuse Bead Activity Kit for Kids Crafts, 1200 pcs
Perler Beads Glow in The Dark Multicolor Fuse Bead Bucket Kit, 5000pcs, (package may vary)
100 Pieces Stainless Steel Earrings Posts Flat Pad,100 Pieces Butterfly Earring Backs,100 Pieces Bullet Earring Backs,Total 300 Pieces (8mm)