Crafty Chittering resident Joanne Gunn was overwhelmed by the beautiful wine bottle boxes, glossy magazines and gift bags piling up in her recycling bin. The wastage of the array of pretty papers — which are expensive to produce — worried her.
Joanne (Jo) and her husband Peter run an exclusive farm accommodation business, White Dog Farm, with self-catering chalets hidden amongst the bushland on their property in Lower Chittering. They endeavour to be as eco-friendly as possible, but with guests on site regularly, the build up of high-quality magazines and packaging was unavoidable.
Then Jo stumbled upon the unique craft of paper bead-making — the ideal way to recycle and re-use the waste paper and cardboard. The process involves rolling strips of paper onto a pencil or knitting needle and gluing in place. The beads can then be strung onto thread or wire as a necklace or bracelet. Jo has developed her own method of colour coding and mixes and matches to create appealing pieces of jewellery. Whilst they only last a season, they are inexpensive, fun and eco-friendly!
Jo also makes handcrafted wrapping papers, and unique handbags using paper weaving and other items such as gift-wrapping bows. Whilst she finds the process a relaxing hobby, it’s rewarding too — Jo donates the proceeds from her sales todog rescue in honour the five rescue dogs the couple have had over the years.