In a medium saucepan, combine water and 1/2 cup sugar, stirring over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Remove from heat and stir in cranberries. Using a slotted spoon, transfer cranberries onto parchment paper or a wire rack. Let dry for one hour.
Working a scoopful at a time, roll the cranberries into the remaining sugar until well coated and place on a new sheet of parchment. Let dry completely- at least an hour- before using.