Make Plastic Bead Suncatchers in an Embroidery Hoop Frame

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Make Melted Plastic Bead Suncatchers in an Embroidery Hoop FrameThis is my favorite of the melted bead suncatchers so far!

A plastic bead suncatcher in an embroidery hoop frame…

Not only is it about the easiest and quickest way to make a melted bead suncatcher, it has a simple built in frame. You can get embroidery hoops in just about any size from teeny-tiny to rather large and the little screw thing at the top is perfect for hanging so no need to drill any holes.

Wouldn’t a window full of these melted bead suncatchers in various sizes be lovely?

Here’s how to make them…

Plastic Bead Suncatchers in Embroidery Hoop Frames

MATERIALS

  • Gas or electric grill (preferably outside)

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INSTRUCTIONS

1. Place your wood embroidery hoop on foil-lined baking dish.

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2. Add the plastic pony beads in any design desired to the inside of the embroidery hoop. You can go for random, abstract, or representational.

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3. Insert extra beads into any spaces you see. Make sure to fill the hoop completely. What happens is that the beads melt to fill the space, but then they contract a little when they cool. If you don’t have enough beads in there, the suncatcher might pull away from the embroidery hoop frame.

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4. Cook for 5-15 minutes at 400-450 degrees F. I use a gas grill outdoors but I’ve heard that a toaster oven outside works well also. The time depends on the size of the stained glass and the temperature. I set my timer for 5 minutes and then check it frequently after that. You want to take it off when the beads are completely melted and flat (ideally) but don’t let it get too hot and start to bubble.

Note: The fumes from melting plastic are not good to breathe, which is why we do the melting on the grill outside. If you decide to do it inside, make sure to ventilate well.

5. Remove from heat and let cool completely.

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6. Peel the aluminum foil off the back of the suncatcher.

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7. Hold up to the sun and admire!

You can hang your plastic bead suncatchers in the window using one of those little suction cups with hooks (just hooking the embroidery hoop screw over the hook) as we did in these images, or you can make a hanging loop with ribbon or string and tie it to the screw. We’ve since made a bunch with bead loops which are especially lovely!

Wouldn’t these make nice gifts?

If you’re looking for more melted bead suncatcher ideas, here are my melted bead suncatcher posts so far:

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Comments

  1. Dena says

    Your best one yet, especially for the neat and tidy people! It’s wonderful how your brain is on overdrive with these!

  2. Michelle says

    What a wonderful post! My daughter has been so inspired by your suncatcher posts and already suggested making these as holiday gifts.

  3. Heather says

    can you post a link to the melted crayon sun catcher? I saw somewhere that you had one posted but cannot find it. Thanks.
    P.S. I did the cake pans version of these today with my 7 year old we loved them so more I am off to Michaels to get more pony beads and some of these loops to do with her tomorrow! Great after school activity! Thanks so much1

  4. says

    This is just genius! Can you hear me running to find a hoop and some beads? And wondering if it can go in the oven with the lasagne (only kidding!) Thanks for the great idea!

  5. Naamah says

    After reading your posts about these sun catchers for the last little while, we finally found some transparent beads this week. Here in Australia there seems to be demand for solid colours as that is all I have found. This weekend we are experimenting! Looking forward to it!!

  6. says

    You might make a suggestion to soak the loops in water for a while before placing on the grill. Like kabob sticks, the dry wood on the embroidery loop smokes, burns, and cracks when not soaked. Wish I had thought to do this before we made ours!

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