To say my kids and I LOVE Perler beads, is an understatement! During quarantine and throughout this summer, we had so much fun crafting together, there truly is enjoyment for all ages with these beads.
My 5 year old got to practice fine motor skills, using tweezers or placing her beads with her fingers. She also got to work on sorting colors when it was time to cleanup! The fact that she could simply fill a shape of one of the special pegboards, such as a heart or flower, was especially rewarding for her to create her own unique design. I love that she could “play along” with us in her own way.
My 8 year old enjoyed following patterns, some from Perler pattern books and some from the Perler website. The giant world map was a fantastic challenge and an impressive finished piece to display. He found a few ideas online to copy and then took those ideas and concepts learned from patterns to create his own original designs. I love watching his imagination and creativity at work as his bead designs come to life!
For me, I remember Perler beads from my childhood and I’ve always loved a good craft project! As a graphic designer, these really appeal to my creative side and I joke that I have probably had more fun with these than the kids! There is also something so serene about working with the beads, a relaxing stress-free diversion during a crazy time.
The best part, honestly, is the fact that creating with Perler beads is truly a fun activity that I can enjoy WITH my children!
Here's a collection of some of our summer projects below ...
My Favorite Things
I kind of went a little overboard at the beginning of quarantine and bought ALL THE THINGS related to Perler Beads! Here are just a few that I would considered "must haves" ...
• We bought several trays of pre-sorted colors which I LOVE, but the best bang for your buck is a giant bucket of assorted beads.
• The official Perler green tweezers can pick up 2 beads at once and work better than using your fingers or any other kind of tweezers for quick bead placement.
• You are 100% going to want to use ONLY the Perler ironing paper. Do NOT, I repeat, for the love of your iron, do NOT use wax paper! There is a coating that will melt on your beads and iron and you will have sad people all around.
• Beads are going to fall on the floor. Probably lots of beads. This little sweeper is a life saver, and its kind of fun to use, the kids might even help clean up willingly!
• Pegboards of various shapes and sizes make everything more fun. This pack has large basic shapes, but you can find everything from animals and people to flower and butterfly shapes. Younger kids may have fun simply filling a shape to create their masterpiece!
• Work in progress you want to keep safe? No problem with the Bead n' Carry! Again, this one is a lifesaver for kids who are working on a project but want to set it aside for a bit without it getting bumped and broken. The plastic lid safely stores everything! (Only downside, it only works with a large square pegboard.)
• Lastly, if you are little OCD like me and prefer to have all your beads sorted by color, grab a couple of these clear organizer trays! As you move to more advanced projects, sorted colors will definitely be a plus!
So, will you pick up some Perler beads and start crafting with your kids? I'd love to see your designs!