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Hello again! A little personal story and then on to the beading project… I started this blog with the mental goal of never letting it consume me. I want it to be organic & real, and not feel like work. Neither of us would benefit from me feeling as if I had to write just to “push out” posts. So when my life gets nutty, or my family needs me… I don’t feel bad not being able to share. And this past week, my friends, was the first time I had to test that theory. While I missed the routine of posting, my energy was very much needed elsewhere.
With my grandmother’s passing I was asked to compile photos, new and old, for her memorial slideshow. So I spent most of last week lost in a beautiful sea of old photographs and memories spanning over 8 decades. Images capturing everything that my grandmother was about. I was surrounded by her. She left a legacy within our large family, marking us with our own personal moments with her. I often credit my creativity and craftiness to her, creating was what she always did. Painting, quilting, sewing, pottery, photography, costume design… you name it she tried it. Which resonates so deeply with me. Grandma spent 86 amazing, fulfilled years with all of us, and we miss her everyday.
While I tried dealing with the news, I knew I needed to be with my girls. Their love and laughter made it just that tiny bit more peaceful. So I found it very fitting, and therapeutic, for the three of us to test out a Pinterest idea I found for dyed pasta beads. A way for us to be creative, crafty & find second uses for things we already had in the house. Something Grandma Janet was well known for! Plus, no mom on the weekend is looking for anything fancy or time consuming, and this recipe seemed to fit the bill (for all of us!).
At first I thought the girls could help me out. After all the dye was in ziplock baggies, right? But of course, that was quickly foiled. No matter how I explained it, they would shake and smash the bags in such away it created holes, leaving trails of food coloring everywhere! With all the crazy blundering we did, I made sure to tweak and test this out a bit, so make sure to read my “TIPS” section before you start.
I loved that this was a quick dye job and we could have been beading with an hour or two of coloring the pasta. But we waited until the next day just to be safe. This mom did NOT want to be cleaning up crazy dye marks twice!
Original Posting: My Name is Skickerdoodle
Colored Pasta Beads
- 1/4 cup small pasta, like ditalini
- 1 Ziplock bags
- 1/2 to 1 tsp rubbing alcohol, optional
- 6-12 drops food coloring (I used both regular & neon dyes)
- Place about a 1/4 cup of pasta in a ziplock baggie.
- Add rubbing alcohol (if desired) & 10-12 drops of dye.
- Seal baggie with a bit of air inside, and shake until all pasta is dyed.
- Add more dye if the color is not bright or strong enough for you.
- Open ziplock and fold over top if needed. Allow baggies to sit open to air out. If you used rubbing alcohol, I suggest laying beads out on tin foil (not wax paper as shown.)
- Dye beads the day before or several hours before you want to bead with your kids. My beads dried within an hour or two. The original recipe took much longer.
- Only use rubbing alcohol if you want. I did a test batch with the same color, one with and one without the alcohol. The only difference is that the alcohol batch was dyed inside the pasta “hole” and washed off at a slower rate. Both dyed beads WILL lose the color when wet/washed.
- Do not use regular yarn. Even with knotting a bead on the end for stringing. As soon as I “made a bracelet” they popped apart & beads were everywhere! We have several other “string” to try, so I will edit when I find a good one. (Leave a comment if you find one that works well!)
- I did only one box of pasta & that should last us forever!
I love how simple and easy this was to complete (even with a few learning blunders). Especially if you don’t use the rubbing alcohol. Pasta, 10-12 drops of dye, shake and air dry! Those beads were dry within an hour or two and ready for play! Since I did the entire box of pasta all at once, we now have an entire container of beads anytime we want to play or craft. And this project can lead to so many outcomes. Maybe you need a gift for Grandma’s birthday, or just something to keep the kids occupied (can you say busy bag?). They can even re-bead over and over on knotted yarn, or paste them on paper for a new artwork. Limitless, a mom’s favorite word!
Love this & tried it? Share your project photos on my Facebook page, tag them on Instagram & Twitter with #MadeByMeggs or even comment below! I’d love to see what you create! Don’t forget to check out more of what inspires me on Pinterest. xoxo Meggs