Introduction: Upcycled Ang Pao Bracelet

Every single Chinese New Year, red packets are emptied and (let's be honest) thrown out after the insides are taken. A small few recycle the, for the following but some red packets are printed with the year i.e.: 2019,2020 or even with the animal of the Chinese Zodiac i.e.: rat, pig which means the next time the same packet is going to be used will be in the next 12 years!

In this instructable, I'll be sharing some ways to turn these ang pao packets into a bracelet for your loved ones or even as a treat for yourself.


- Any angpao / red packets

- Paper glue

- Long ruler

- Elastic string

- Beads with holes

- Clear/ Transparent nail polish

- Scissors

- Penknife

- Pencil

- Thin wooden stick

Step 1: Cut 3 Packets and Glue Them Together

Cut the ang pao packets so that it opens up as a flat page instead of an envelope. Do this step for 3 packets (you can experiment with any number of packets but ideally I would suggest 3). Then, glue the packets as shown in the photo above.

Step 2: Draw a Triangle With a 2cm Base

On the inside of the 3 packets together, measure and draw a triangle with a base of 2cm. The height would be till the end of the page as shown in the photo.

Step 3: Cut Out the Triangle

I mean we drew it for a reason, it's time to cut the triangle out! Repeat Step 2 and 3 till you get about 6 to 8 triangles altogether. A tip would be using the first triangle as a mold to draw the next triangle instead of measuring it one by one.

Step 4: Roll Up the Triangle Into a Little Bead

Now comes the fun bit! Place the base of the triangle onto the wooden stick (you can also use a chopstick) and slowly roll up the triangle into a sort of a cylinder. Put glue along the sides and at the end of the triangle to ensure the bead stays in place. It is important to make sure to roll the paper in a way that the tip stays in the center to create a symmetrical design. Repeat the step for all the strips.

Step 5: Paint the Beads With Transparent Nail Polish

Once all the beads are rolled up, place and align them onto a wooden stick. Ensure there is about 1cm spacing between the beads and cover them up with clear nail polish. This is to make the bead more sturdy and have a nice shiny glow to it. Leave the beads to dry and repeat with a second coat if needed.

Step 6: Step 6: Measure and Cut the Elastic String

Measure and cut the elastic string according to the size of your choice.

Step 7: Place the Beads Through the String and Tie Them Up

You're almost there! Tie a knot at one end of the string, use your own creativity and style to put the ang pao beads (or any additional beads) through the string to create your very own upcycled bracelet. Tie it up with 3 knots and you're done!

Step 8: Just Some Tips!

1. You can try using any other colour packets or even any other kind of paper i.e.: magazines, newspapers.

2. Other than a triangular shape, you can experiment with different shapes and length to form other designs.

3. Making a bracelet is just one way to use these beads. You can also use them to make other sorts of jewellery or ornaments for clothing.

For more information, you can visit our instagram account: @taylorsxmereka

Happy making! :)