This Eye-Catching Jewelry and Home Decor Is Made From Upcycled Paper Beads

Devi Chand of Papermelon is a big fan of sustainable, recyclable materials.

Sunday comics necklace

 Necklace made from the Sunday comics.


You will never look at paper scraps in quite the same way after seeing the art that Devi Chand makes. Chand is the owner of Papermelon, a company that makes eye-catching jewelry and home decor using upcycled newspapers, magazines, storybooks, gift wrap, calendars, and pamphlets. 

classic newspaper bracelet
Classic newspaper bracelet.


Chand, who attended the National Institute of Fashion Technology, said she loves creating in her little home studio once her child has left for school in the mornings. "I craft so that I don’t have to do other boring things," her bio states. Papermelon was created in 2009 when she grew disillusioned with corporate design life and realized she needed to start her own project.

In an email to Treehugger, Chand delves deeper into describing her passion for paper and the fact that it can be upcycled from so many diverse sources:

Everything is done by hand, without the aid of machinery. Chand says that, while the finished beads have a perfect shape, there's still an aspect of surprise to the process. "I work with papers that have irregular designs and colors, so it’s hard to predict the patterns the beads will decide to have," says Chand. "So when they are finished, I’m as surprised as anybody else. And I love that suspense."

She told The Humming Notes that bead-making requires patience and perseverance. They can be made in a range of shapes, from conical to cylindrical to drum-shaped, and she views the process as meditative.

rainbow wall clock

 Rainbow Wall Clock.


The items come packaged in handmade paper boxes, sourced from local suppliers, and padded with recycled crinkled paper. Additional jewelry elements, like beads, cords, and silver hooks come from local, home-run businesses. Chand tells Treehugger, "The tailoring shop downstairs is a wonderful source of scrap fabric for the fabric bows we tie on every package." She adheres to a zero-waste policy in her studio and uses minimal energy. Her self-constructed light box, set on her balcony and used to photograph pieces, is one example of this.

You can see the Papermelon collections here.

Katherine Martinko, August 2021