How to Make Bottle-Cap Charms

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Teenagers and crafters enjoy making and wearing their own jewelry and often select jewelry craft projects that use "found" or "repurposed" items. Making bottle-cap charms is one such craft that does not require extensive jewelry-making skills or much specialized equipment. They can be made with a variety of inserts -- pictures, charms, scrap paper or fabric, and beads, for example -- and are easily personalized. Make these clever charms to use as pendants, earrings or ornaments.

Things You'll Need

  • Clean bottle caps
  • Small needle-nosed pliers
  • Hammer
  • Awl or nail
  • Sandpaper or emery board
  • 1-inch circle punch
  • Patterned papers, photographs or fabric scraps
  • Small charms, seashells or other craft embellishments
  • Craft glue
  • Liquid glaze product
  • Small paint brush
  • Small jump rings
  • Assorted jewelry findings
  • Clean the bottle caps and remove the plastic cap liners using your fingernails or needle-nosed pliers. If desired, use the pliers to bend the edges outward and flat.

  • Make a hole in the edge of the bottle cap. Punch the hole by hammering the point of the nail or the awl completely through the edge. Sand down the punched area if necessary to get rid of any sharp edges.

  • Select the paper or photograph for the base of your charm. Use the circle punch to cut a one-inch circle of paper or fabric to fit into the bottle cap. Glue the circle into the cap and allow the glue to dry for half an hour.

  • Add decorations or embellishments to your charm as desired. Glue on small charms, faux gemstones, beads or glitter, for example. Allow the glue to dry for half an hour.

  • Coat the surface of the completed design in the bottle cap by brushing on your choice of a clear glaze or sealant like Diamond Glaze, UTEE or resin. These are available in the jewelry-making section of your local craft or hobby store. Follow the directions on the package for use and drying time. Most products require only a single coat; resin products also need a catalyst for processing.

  • Twist open a jump ring and thread it through the hole in your completed charm. Use the needle-nosed pliers to close the ring. Add jewelry findings -- pin backs, ribbon or cord, earring hooks or chains -- to complete the project.

Tips & Warnings

  • Bottle-cap charms are easy to personalize for individuals or occasions. Make them in school colors for a pep squad. Use grandchildren's pictures for a proud grandma's charm bracelet. Christmas wrapping paper or snowflake shapes will turn your bottle caps into delicate Christmas-tree ornaments.

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References

  • Photo Credit Comstock Images/Comstock/Getty Images
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