Groovy Gum Wrapper Bracelet

Click to view or print the pattern and instructions for this craft.


The 1960s and 70s brought forth a counterculture movement.  American youth rejected the lifestyle and rules of their parents and other authority figures.  Kids were concerned about the planet and the use of its resources.  Recycling became a theme of this generation.  Materials that could be reused, were reused.  People turned used soda cans into hats, purses, Christmas trees, candle holders, and other items.  Clothing could never be too worn out.  If there were holes in your clothes, they were patched with colorful fabrics. 

One of the recycled crafts I can remember making in the 1970s was gum wrapper bracelets.  When I was a kid, each gum wrapper was a printed label.  We would save each wrapper and fold it into a small rectangular “bead.”  We slid each bead into another bead to create interlocking links.  When we had a chain that was long enough to fit around our wrist, we looped a bead final through the two ends to make a circle that we could wear as a bracelet.

This GUM WRAPPER BRACELET craft uses paper rectangles that can be folded and assembled to make a linked chain bracelet.  Each rectangle contains a verse or word that was used in the 1960s and 70s.  Most have disappeared from our vocabularies, but your students will get a kick out of the “groovy” language of the past.