June 11, 2009
How-To: Paper Chandelier Bead Garlands
Sabrina and Eunice Moyle, our super-talented (and super-sweet!) friends from Hello!Lucky letterpress printing, sent over this amazing DIY. The project was inspired by these graphic modern chandelier wedding invitations (top center and bottom left), which they designed with Jean of EIEIO Studios. Jeffrey Rudell's amazing paper chandelier for Tiffany's (top right) also guided the technique.
The crystal-like garlands are made with discs of paper and string, and can be draped like the strands of a necklace, or just allowed to hang vertically, like raindrops. The project is great to do with friends -- it’s easy, but involves a bit of manual labor. Experiment with different paper colors, textures and patterns to match your wedding palette!
Materials (makes about 10 feet of beading)
A 32" x 40" sheet of silver mirrored foil cardstock
10 feet of silver or white string, or dental floss
Tape gun and double-stick tape (if you're using metallic paper), or a glue stick
Circle punches -- we used a 1 5/8" punch for the large beads, and a 13/16" punch for the small beads
Bone folder (optional)
Step 1: Using your circle punches, punch out as many discs as you'll need given the length of your strands and the size of your punches. (We used approximately nine large discs and eight small discs per foot.)
Step 2: Lay each large disc with the outward-facing side up, and fold in half. (Use a bone folder to get a nice deep crease.) Repeat for each disc. We alternated mirrored and white sides to add dimension and texture.
Step 3: Alternating between large and small discs, tape them to the string to create chandelier beads. For the large beads, you'll tape three discs together around the string. Affix double-stick tape to one side of each disc, and then press the side of each disc to the side of another disc, going around the string. You'll wind up with a three-dimensional bead, with three distinct sides. To make the smaller beads, just use double-sided tape to affix two discs back to back with the string running between them.
Step 4: Start decorating! Drape the beads in radiating strands around a central tent pole or light fixture, varying the depth of the curve, or in vertical strands from the ceiling.
To see more of Hello!Lucky's wedding invitations and inspiration, visit their website and blog.
Images: Sara Remington, Hello!Lucky and Jeff Rudell
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