Making jewelry charms is one of the handmade jewelry basics. Charms are so versatile, you can use them in so many projects – including the classic charm bracelet! It can be as complicated or as simple as you like, and with just a few practice runs, even a beginner will be cranking out charms in no time. That makes this a really great group craft, too. With a group of friends, you can share beads to make charms for yourselves, or swap charms to make friendship charm bracelets!
- Charm Bracelet(s) (these are great for groups because they come in packs of 10)
- 2-inch Head Pins
- Jump Rings
- Round Nosed Pliers
- Wire Cutters
- Jewelry Pliers
- Beads you love! I love these Big Value color themed kits. You get a whole set of beads with different shapes and textures that are color coordinated for you. I also recommend a nice stopper bead, like these silver heishi spacer beads.
When you make charms, there are a few things to keep in mind. First of all, you need a stopper bead at the bottom. This will be a small bead with a small hole so that your focal bead doesn’t fall off the bottom of your head pin. You also want to vary your sizes, colors, and shapes of beads you use. Making each charm different is a great way to add variety to your piece – so you want to pick up a coordinated assortment of beads – or, get together with a group of girlfriends for this project! Each person can bring a package of beads they love. You can all make charms, and mix and match at the end of your craft session.
To make a charm for your charm bracelet, thread your beads onto a head pin. Use your round-nosed pliers to make a loop over one side.
Making the basic wire-wrapped charms is an essential jewelry making skill. Once you master it, you will find yourself making charms for lots of jewelry projects!
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Adrianne is a writer, artist, designer, wife, and mom of 2 kids. She blogs at happyhourprojects.com where the theme is tutorials and recipes that can be made in an hour or less. Her favorite projects are jewelry-making, paper crafts, and recycled crafts. She participates annually in ArtPrize, an international art competition, and she’s the author of the book DIY T-Shirt Crafts: 50 Ways to Recycle a T-Shirt (August 2015).