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Kids have lots of spare time and need to find way's to fill this up. By messing around a child can learn a lot. With iron on beads a kids can explore there own creativity and make whatever colorful figures they want.
***What are they, how to use them?***
Iron on beads are little cylindric plastic-alike pearls. They come in lots of colors, some even have glitters in them. There even are 'light in the dark' pearls on the market which can be used in children's bedrooms. The pearls need to be put on a pegboard, pegboards come in various shapes and sizes. When enough beads have been put next to each other, the beads can be ironed together. To iron these little pearls, they need to be covered with iron paper, mostly this has been provided by the manufacturer of the pearls but if there's no paper around, baking paper will do just fine! Put the flatiron on its highest temperature. Put the paper over the pearls and iron them. Don't iron too long and neither too short. Either the pegboard will melt or the bead pearl figure will fall apart. Counting to 10 when ironing is a good lead of time. Take the figure of the pegboard and put the board aside. Turn the figure around and put the iron paper on it, iron again for 10 seconds. Look out! The figure will be hot. Put in on a cold surface and put some weight on it so it wont curl. Keep in mind not to let little children play unattended, they might think the pearls are eatable.
There are 2 major known company's who produce these pearls. Hema and Creative, these can both be found in toy story's. I've tried both marks and find them of equal quality. It should be taken in mind that pearls from different manufacturers can not be combined. When ironed together, they might just fall apart. Personally I stick with Creative, because these beads are PVC-free, they also have a nice website: http://www.ses-creative.com/ .
***What do I do with these pearls?***
A have a few little nephews who needs some entertaining when the grown ups are having a cup of tea and a boring conversation. I saw these pearls in the shop and at first I thought it would really give a big mess with those little monsters. Anyway, I needed something and the kids were already bored with painting, coloring and claying around so I picked these. A box of 9000 pearls cost me about Euro 14, that's about £ 11,5. I thought if the kids don't play with them, there's always something I can do with them.
One of my nephews saw them, he became very exited. He did however not really understand what to should do with them, but at that time he was barely 4 years old. So as a good aunt I sat next to him and made him a car, he found that brilliant but he also got a bit frustrated because he could not make such thing. Nevertheless, he kept trying so we made an Easter egg together. That really did it, he kept playing with those pearls 4 hours long, amazing for a 4 year old. What wondered me the most is the fact he would only lose a couple of pearls on the floor when playing. At first didn't make the most beautiful things but it kept him amused. Every time his pegboard was filled up, he asked me to iron it, that was the excellent timing to learn him flatirons are hot and dangerous.
The first time i ironed I broke a pegboard because I ironed way too long. Once the pearls have melted together and cooled down, they are pretty robust, however kid's hands can brake everything apart. Now he's almost 5 and starts to build solid houses with those pearls.They are his personal favorite.
The box I bought still has half of the pearls in it but some colors are becoming seldom. Good thing to know some of the colors can be bought separate, so you don't have to buy a big box. Although I'm sure I'll soon buy a new one :) .
For anyone who ran out of ideas, there is a website with numerous examples. It can be found http://www.eksuccessbrands.com/perlerbeads/ and if that is not sufficient, you could always use cross-stitch patterns.
---This review has also been posted on my own personal blog---