How to Fuse Perler Beads

    by Katelyn Kelley

    About the Author

    Katelyn Kelley worked in information technology as a computing and communications consultant and web manager for 15 years before becoming a freelance writer in 2003. She specializes in instructional and technical writing in the areas of computers, gaming and crafts. Kelley holds a Bachelor of Arts in mathematics and computer science from Boston College.


    Perler beads are multicolored, soft plastic beads children place on pegged plates to form designs, shapes and characters. The pegs keep the beads upright and close together so you can fuse them with high heat to solidify the design. The soft plastic melts and expands when heated, joining the beads together. After cooling, the Perler bead object can be used as a decoration, a toy or joined with other Perler bead pieces to create three-dimensional objects.

    Things You'll Need

    • Perler beads
    • Perler bead pegboard
    • Parchment paper
    • Iron and ironing surface

    Place the Perler beads on the pegboard so the holes in their middles sit on the pegs.

    Continue placing beads until your design is complete. Make sure all the beads are touching at least one other bead so they can be fused together.

    Pre-heat the iron to a medium-heat setting. Do not use the steam function if your iron has this.

    Place a piece of kitchen parchment paper over the design and apply the iron to the parchment paper, never directly to the beads.

    Move the iron in a circular motion over the paper with an even pressure for 10 seconds, making sure you iron the entire design.

    Check if the Perler beads have melted and expanded by looking at surface you've been ironing. You will be able to see through the paper slightly once the beads start melting against it.

    Iron for another five seconds, if you don't see the beads expanding so they touch each other.

    Set the design aside with the paper still attached, and allow it to cool. This takes approximately 15 minutes.

    Lift the parchment paper off when the beads are cool and flip the design over on your ironing surface.

    Place the parchment paper over the design again and iron the other side for 10 seconds. Set aside and cool as before.

    Lift the parchment paper off when the beads are cool and your Perler bead creation is now ready to use.

    • Try special shaped Perler bead pegboards, such as the dolphin, turtle or monkey, to create specific animals.
    • Adult supervision is required for the ironing.
    • Do not try to remove the parchment paper if the design is still warm or the beads may stick to the paper and warp the design.