My first attempt at this was not good. I wanted to try it immediately and the only beads I happened to have came from a little melty bead kit that I had picked up for my 6yr old for $1. Apparently those don't melt the same because when they melted they had like little tails coming off of them and looked like a tadpole.
So I went to Hobby Lobby and found this awesome bucket of beads for $11.99 BEFORE COUPON! There are 8500 beads in this bucket! Yes for the same price they had a mixed bucket of over 11000, but I liked the color assortment in this one and the fact they were grouped in little assorted color bags that went well together. This bucket is called "Magical Princess" lol. The fact it had a horse/unicorn little mold to go with it just made it even better. That way if my dots are a fail again, at least my 6yr old will get use from it.
Here are the different color bead assortments that are in it. The bag with blues/purples have glitter beads in them.
And here is my first sheet out of the oven! Love the color combo and they melted perfectly.
I used my regular electric oven set at 290* for 40 minutes. I baked mine on a silpat mat. I have read parchment paper works very well but the mat helps them not slip so much and you won't have to stand as many back up if you bump it. The hardest part is taking the time to stand them all up. After 35 minutes they looked almost melted but some had a tiny indent in the middle where the hole had been and the other 5 min got rid of that.
Here are my wonderful little melted dots ready to be used!
Look at these bright summery colors! (bad, shadowy picture but you get the idea) I would probably never thought to group them in this color combo but I love it! Kind of looks like skittles.
Does anyone remember what I said the reasons I picked this bucket over the others were? Right, I liked the separate color combos in it. Well, after my kids making a minecraft creeper and a unicorn (of course) this is what my bucket now looks like.
Hopefully this has been some help for making your own gorgeous enamel dots. Now I need to go check and see if they will fit in the Stampin' Up! candy dots brad bases! That would be awesome. Even though these are not SU colors I find that some are pretty close. I think I can use these with strawberry slush, crisp cantaloupe, coastal cabana, and I think a few more fairly well.
**UPDATE** I just got this! And this makes it so much easier to stand all those little beads up on the trays! Saves so much time!! It's a perler bead pen!