Ooo! Yay! Melting things!! Ever since our shrinky dinks phase, my daughter and I have really enjoyed crafts that involve melting things. Today I’m sharing some cute hearts that we made out of melted pony beads and well…melted melty beads too!
Now we have never used melty beads in a melty fashion but we have made an DIY abacus out of them and did some melty beads activities with them in their unmelted form. We also had some pony beads and tri-beads left from our fun Mooseltoe activities.
We found a fun and easy way to turn our beads into super cute hearts. We made our hearts into magnets but you could also make them into other things, like maybe sun-catchers, a tic tac toe set or maybe even a key chain.
I’ll give you the melted pony beads and melty beads tutorial below but I just wanted to mention that I use affiliate links in this post. This just means that if you happen to buy something through those links I make a tiny commission at no additional cost to you. Okay. Here’s the deets!
Melted Pony Beads & Valentine’s Day Magnets Tutorial
We tried three types of beads and depending on your desired results you can take your pick. We tried all of them in our silicone baking molds with no prep or other treatment needed.
Transparent Colored Tri-beads – These are clear and melt glass-like. We liked them but had a slightly hard time to get them to fill in the entire heart when we used only tri-beads. They are the clear spots in the muti-colored hearts. Would be pretty for a suncatcher though, since it would be okay if there were holes! You can also try laying the beads two layers deep to fill the whole heart. If you melt them one at a time they actually end up in a triangle or heart shape, which is cute but you can’t do a ton with them.
Pony Beads (ours were sent to us by CraftProjectIdeas.com) – These melted very nicely and evenly and stayed true to their colors. We used them for the totally white ones and found that they came out the smoothest if you turn the pony beads all sideways, and put them in one flat layer, with no holes showing, versus just dumping them in and leaving them.
Perler Beads (our Melty Beads wee also sent to us by CraftProjectIdeas.com) – These are meant to be melted with a iron so using them in the oven is a little different. We did have one that was white end up slightly yellowed. We used them for the matching sets. They did better when they were all in one layer and all in the same direction.
Silicone Molds. We have these Wilton molds, but they seem to go in and out of availability on Amazon. If you can’t find those available, this set appears to make fewer of the same size hearts, maybe slightly deeper. This set looks like it make slightly smaller hearts but is cheaper. So long as you are using silicone molds it should be fine….the hard plastic ice cube trays are not what you want.
Round Magnets if you want to make them into magnets. Once again ours were given to us by CraftProjectIdeas.com and the ones on Amazon that look similar do not get the best reviews. These magnets get good reviews but would require hot glue to attach them to the hearts. Also just be sure to put away the magnets and make sure to supervise your kids around magnets.
Melting the Beads
We preheated the oven to 325, placed the silicone mold onto a making sheet for stability and left them in the oven for about an hour. Put your hood fan on to vent the air.
You can check on them sooner but it took a long time for ours. I thought I’d try a batch with the oven higher but they melted more uneven. I’d stick with low and slow. If they are not flat, leave them in longer.
Once you take them out, let them cool fully and then just poke them out of the silicone mold! Woohoo!
If you do have any sharp points on yours you can use sand paper or a nail file to smooth them out.
To make ours into magnets we just used the foam adhesive on the back, but I would say hot glue would be the best bet! Tie a string through a hole in one for a sun catcher or make a matching set for a tic tac toe set!