Jelly Belly Mosaic!

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Introduction: Jelly Belly Mosaic!

This is one of the most fun projects I've ever done! If you're just looking for a quick craft, you might want to pass on this one. I worked on it over a few days, but it was worth every second. I got inspired by the mosaics I saw on the Jelly Belly website. I figured it probably wasn't too hard, so I got a few bags of Jelly Bellys and started experimenting!
Alright, before you get started, here's your checklist.

- Jelly Belly beans, enough of each colour to complete your picture (I guess you could use regular jelly beans, but I don't suggest it. Jelly Bellys are the perfect size, though they are a bit pricey! The best place to get them is from the bulk section, or if you are making a very large mosaic, you can order them online.)
- A canvas (Make sure it's big enough. The more beans you use, the more realistic your picture looks. Mine was 16"x12", and you probably don't want to go smaller than that. Also, make sure it's sturdy! Those beans can be a little heavy.)
- Paint to match the colours of the Jelly Bellys (You'll see why in the next step), and paintbrushes
- Glue Gun, and lots of extra glue gun sticks! (I tried a bunch of different kinds of glues, but liquid glue + sugar was not a good combination. It always melted the sugar before it could dry. Glue gun is the only method that dries quickly enough.)

And that's all! Have fun!

By the way, if you were wondering, here is a list of the flavours I used:

Background:
Buttered popcorn
Counter:
Juicy Pear
Berry Blue
Lemon Lime
Mint Mint Chocolate Chocolate Chip
Ice Cream:
Cotton Candy
Bubble Gum
Our Strawberry Blonde
Birthday Cake Remix
Strawberry Cheescake
Strawberry Daiquiri
Cone:
Apple Pie a la Cold Stone
Coconut

All the official flavour guides can be found here: http://www.jellybelly.com/fun_stuff/flavor_guides.aspx

Step 1:

First thing you want to do is decide what image you want the mosaic to be. I chose an ice cream cone, so I googled a picture to use as a reference.

Next, paint the picture on the canvas. It doesn't have to be perfect at all, but don't skip this step, it is necessary. Otherwise, the white spaces between the Jelly Bellys (caused by the white canvas) will be very noticable. It will also make it easy to figure out where to put the Jelly Bellys if you've got the image painted already. If you look closely at my finished product, you will be able to see the spaces between the beans where I have painted it to match.

Now, it is probably a good idea to roughly arrange the beans on the canvas before you glue them on. Once you have a good idea where you want everything to go, start gluing! I started by outlining the ice cream cone from the left side and working over to the right. If you make a mistake, it is possible to pull off the bean and get a new one. Also, you will notice that on the left side of the cone,  I tried to use the darker beans (of the same flavour), going lighter and lighter the more I moved to the right. It creates shadowing. This only works with marbled beans, since none of them look quite the same.   

Step 2:

If you are doing an ice cream cone, make sure you finish it before moving on to the background.

I did the background by first outlining the whole thing (and the ice cream cone, as shown) and then, starting from the top, I glued the beans on by alternating between horizontal and vertical, depending on how many fit in each row. When you're doing the rows, you definitely want to arrange each row without gluing first, just to make sure it'll fit. You may think it will fit, but the size of the beans can vary.

It's pretty straightforward from here - just keep going until you've got the whole thing covered. Be creative, use different shades of the same colour to give the illusion of depth. The more colours, the more real it will look!

Step 3: Done!!

Woohoo! You're done, so...hang it somewhere, give it to someone....hope you like your artwork!

If you like the instructable, give me a comment!

And if you do end up making a Jelly Belly mosaic of your own, I would love to see it!

Stay creative! <3

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20 Comments

But wouldnt the jelly bellys rot? maybe you should put a layer of Mod Podge on top, or would that melt it? Idk.
But im definitelly going to make this!
thanks!

Glad you like it!
I don't think jelly beans "rot" exactly, it's mostly just sugar and I'm pretty sure they already have an edible glaze of some sort on them, so that probably helps. They will definitely get harder over time, but it doesn't matter because you won't be eating them. I don't think there appearance will ever change though. And Mod Podge might melt them unfortunately, but you can always do a test first and see what happens. (:

Ok, thanks! Im going to make it as a Christmas gift.

Did you end up making one? If so I would love to see a picture! I'm very curious to see someone else's version of this (:

I decided not to make it for a Christmas gift because Im going to paint my room soon, and im designing the background. Im almost done with the background! I'll show you when Im done!

Awesome, so glad you decided to make one!

I just realized I used the wrong version of "their" in that last comment and it was going to drive me crazy if I didn't correct it. :P

Thanks!

Great Gollywog. . . That's awesome. I've tried something like this with M&M's, but the result wasn't anywhere near as amazing as this. . .