Jewelry Making

Jewelry played a very important role in Ancient Nubia. Many beads in Nubian jewelry are made out of a material called faience, which means “brilliant” and has symbolic significance. This piece of jewelry is made of blue faience ball beads with a blue glazed quartz crystal pendant. These crystals were believed to have magical powers that would protect the wearer from evil forces. Do you wear any jewelry that is important to you?


cat modeling beaded necklace made of rolled up paper strips


You will need:

  • magazines or paper scraps
  • scissors
  • glue or tape
  • a pencil or marker
  • string or yarn
  • earring hooks (optional)

Step 1

on left, using scissors to cut pages from magazines; on right, an arrangement of long triangular strips of magazine cut-outs
To start making your beads, cut the magazine or paper scraps into long, skinny triangles about one inch wide at the base. Cut as many as you’d like—cut 6–8 for a bracelet or more for a necklace.

Step 2

using brush to apply glue to top pointed tip of one triangular cut-out
If you’re using glue, put some glue on the top half of a paper triangle. Leave the bottom half of the triangle without any glue. If you’re using tape, skip to step 3.

Step 3

using a marker to roll up triangular cut-out towards tip applied with glue
Use a marker or pencil to roll up your paper triangle. Start at the bottom of the triangle where it’s the widest and roll it all the way up.

Step 4

using tape to secure tip of triangular cut-out to rest of rolled up paper
If you’re using glue, skip to step 5. If you’re using tape, tape the tip of the triangle to the rest of the rolled-up paper.

Step 5

pile of small rolled up tubes made from magazine cut-outs
Once your bead is completely rolled up, slide it off your marker or pencil. Repeat steps 2–5 to keep making as many beads as you would like!

Step 6

stringing rolled up cut-outs onto piece of yarn to create necklace
Use string, yarn, or old fabric to slide your beads on and create your own bracelets and necklaces. You can even try attaching beads to old earrings you don’t use anymore with tape or glue. Experiment with your jewelry making, and get creative!