Can you believe it’s already back to school time? I swear this whole summer thing just started. I know I was just signing up for swim lessons, planning camping trips, and trying to coax my kids to please if you really love mommy sleep in just a little bit. Now it’s August and the shelves in stores are stocked with spiral notebooks, glue sticks, and safety scissors.
My oldest is headed back to school the first week of August, and my youngest is starting preschool the week after so back to school is in full swing in our house. After getting all the necessary school supplies from both their lists – class-sized snacks and washable markers for one, and a protractor and folders in every color of the rainbow for the other – we went on the hunt for backpacks and then we went on the hunt for something fun to personalize their new backpacks a little.
The other afternoon we had a friend over to play and all three girls got busy making some backpack charms to hang on their backpacks. I join in on the fun too, because I like crafting even if I don’t have a school backpack anymore. We were all very happy with the results and they were so easy to make I can definitely see us making more.
Supplies needed to make Melted Bead Backpack Charms
- Plastic beads
- Metal baking pans (muffin tins or small cake pans work well)
- Key chain rings and clips
- Small metal rings (we used brass compression sleeves from the plumbing aisle. Bolts could also work)
How to make Melted Bead Backpack Charms
1. Preheat your oven or grill to about 400 degrees Fahrenheit. If you use your oven be sure to open windows and set up a fan because the plastic will stink. The grill works a bit faster and keeps the smell outside. Either way the charms will turn out great.Place beads in single layer in a baking pan. You can do a fancy pattern or design like my oldest and her friend did, or you can drop beads in randomly like my youngest did. We tried both clear colored and opaque brightly colored beads. Both worked well, and all the girls were happy with their charms, but they all agreed the brighter beads ere more striking. Put the metal ring in the tin near one of the edges. Make sure beads surround the ring, but have as close to the edge as you can. The ring will be your hole to put your key chain ring through when the beads have melted so make sure it is laying flat in the pan with the hole facing up.
2. When your beads are in place in the pan place the pan in the oven or on the grill with the lid closed. Leave the pan in the oven or grill until the beads are melted and have a flat surface. It will take about 25 minutes in the oven and 10 to 15 minutes on a grill. We used our grill and our charms were finished in 10 minutes. Let your charms cool outside.
3. Once the charms have cooled completely dump them out of the pans and thread your key ring through the hole left by your metal ring. I was able to find some cute plastic clips at Michael’s in the kids bead area as well as key rings, carabineers, and more. You can use whatever works best for you and your backpack though.
4. Put your charm on your backpack and show off your unique style.