How to Make Homemade Metal Jewelry

Written by rose brown
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Jewellery making is a fulfilling and creative endeavour. You can make homemade jewellery with a broad assortment of materials, including beads, fabric, clay, yarn and leather. It is also fun and easy to make homemade jewellery with metal. In fact, if you are already a jewellery crafter, you probably don't even have to leave your house to obtain the supplies. The aluminium cans used to hold soft drinks and produce are perfect for converting into charming and unique jewellery components, such as earrings, pendants, charms and bracelet links.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Aluminium cans
  • Metal jump rings
  • Earring wires
  • Chains
  • Clasps
  • Scissors
  • Tin snips
  • Can opener
  • Heavy paper
  • Pencil
  • Hammer
  • Nail
  • Sandpaper
  • Pliers
  • Leather-coated mallet
  • Dish soap
  • Water

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  1. 1

    Remove the tops and bottoms of aluminium cans using a can opener or scissors. Note that soda cans are easy to cut with scissors, while produce cans require a can opener or tin snips.

  2. 2

    Thoroughly wash the cans inside and out with warm, soapy water. Peel off their labels.

  3. 3

    Cut in a straight line vertically down the side of a can using tin snips or scissors.

  4. 4

    Unroll the can on a work table. Strike it with a leather-coated mallet until it lays flat and you have a smooth square of metal.

  5. 5

    Determine whether you wish to make earrings, a pendant, charms or a bracelet. Draw templates of the shapes of your chosen items, such as circles, ovals, squares, heart shapes or triangles, on a heavy piece of paper with a pencil. Cut out the templates with scissors.

  6. 6

    Position the templates on the blank inside of the flattened can and trace around them in pencil. Cut out the shapes with scissors.

  7. 7

    Hammer a single nail into the place on each aluminium shape where you want to create a hole. Pull out the nail. Note that you will use the holes to connect the shapes to earring wires or to metal jump rings, which will be used to connect the aluminium shapes to chains if they are pendants or charms, or to each other if they are the individual links of a bracelet.

  8. 8

    Sand around the edges of each aluminium shape to soften any sharpness. Rub sandpaper in and around each nail hole.

  9. 9

    Make earrings by opening the small rings at the base of a pair of earring wires with pliers. Slip the holes of your aluminium shapes onto the rings. Close the rings with pliers.

  10. 10

    Fashion pendants and charms by opening jump rings with pliers and sliding them through the holes in your aluminium shapes. Hook the jump rings onto the links of a chain and close them or close the jump rings and push a chain, ribbon or cord through them.

  11. 11

    Create bracelets by joining several individual aluminium shapes with jump rings. Make a hole at both ends of one aluminium shape. Open jump rings with pliers. Slip them through the holes in the aluminium shapes to link the shapes together. Use jump rings to attach a clasp to the bracelet.

Tips and warnings

  • You can feature the colourful outside patterns of soda cans in your homemade metal jewellery creations. When you cut shapes out of these cans, make the printed outsides the "front" and the blank insides the "back."

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