We had a small birthday party last week. The emphasis was on small. Each of my girls was allowed to invite 3, and only 3, friends! You have to understand, I am not a fan of birthday parties at all. This was a big thing for me to give in to this. Once I said yes, though, we needed some fun things to do at the party.
These bracelets and their variants have been floating around for a long time. I used FamilyFun as my source this time. Theirs were water bracelets but I stuck with something even easier!
1/4 inch outside diameter vinyl tubing (Lowe's)
3/8 inch outside diameter vinyl tubing (Lowe's)
hot glue gun
tiny beads or other decorations to fill bracelet (JoAnn's)
Step 1: Cut your 1/4 inch vinyl tubing to the appropriate length to wrap around the wrist plus a little more.
Step 2: Squirt a small amount of hot glue into the end to plug it and seal it off so nothing will fall out.
Step 3: Fill bracelet with tiny beads or other decorations. These will have to be pretty tiny since the opening is less than 1/4 inch. We found it easiest to mix our bead colors in a sandwich bag and then scoop them into the tubing while it was in the bag.
Step 4: Squirt hot glue into the other end to seal off the tube and prevent decorations from coming out. I used low melt because the first thing that happens is the air pushes the center of the glue right back out again. I waited a couple of seconds for it to cool and then just wiped it off and squirted some more glue right down the center. It worked like a charm. I think hot melt glue would have burned my fingers.
Step 5: Cut the 3/8 inch vinyl tubing into inch long pieces. Insert the ends of the bracelet length into the 3/8 inch tube so it acts like a connector piece.
And, it is done! This was really fun for 8 and 9 year old girls. It was quick, but a little tricky to get the beads into the tubes even for girls this age. It might be better to use slightly larger tubes; just be sure the connector piece makes a snug fit with the bracelet piece. I think younger children would love this activity--just use really thick tubing.