Yesterday as we were recovering from a wonderful Shavous holiday weekend, we made some melted hama (perler) bead bowls! You see, a good friend who stayed with us for the holiday just couldn't resist mopping my floors and doing some general cleaning, so when she suggested that maybe the kids could do a project, I most certainly had to step up to the plate! (I'm more than happy to trade crafting for house cleaning any time!) And fortunately, this hama bead project, that's all over the web right now, was the perfect little project that kept four kids busy with minimal clean up, and they happily listened to some music while waiting for the results.
A great project all around, and especially for those kids who prefer process oriented projects over personal expression or pure creativity, alack alas.
- plastic perler or hama beads
- over proof bowls (I used something not technically oven proof, but I know from experience that a heavy ceramic bowl will be fine in the oven for a limited period of time. Though only take my advice with something that isn't precious!)
- an oven
- some kids of all ages in need of a good project
How To: Pre heat the oven to 350F or 200C. Choose either oven proof or sturdy ceramic bowls, and grease the bowls with cooking spray or simply take a piece of paper towel and rub the oil over the entire inside of the bowl. The oil actually helps the little beads stick to the sides so don't worry about applying too much oil.
Starting at the bottom of the bowl, spread the beads in one layer and then work up the sides of the bowl. Once certainly could make patterns with the beads as opposed to doing what we did. (Next time!) Placing the beads around the sides of the bowl is a bit more challenging, but worth the effort! Place the bowls in the oven for about ten minutes or however long it takes for the top row of beads to melt enough that they start to sag a bit, indicating that the rest of the beads have also melted sufficiently I think?
Remove bowls from oven and set aside to cool. If you just can't wait, so place the bowls in the freezer, and after about ten more minutes, pop them out of the bowl base, and wow!
The underside of the bowl has that lovely melted look, and all in all I think we'll be making some of these little bowls again. Maybe they'd make great little bowls to hold a gift, or as catchalls for spare change. In any case, this is a simple craft idea to have on hand this summer!