Uses for Old Jewelry

By Katherine Kally
Recycle old jewelry into decorative art for your home.

If you discard old jewelry, you are throwing away a chance to decorate your home and garden in a variety of ways. Old jewelry may have broken links, missing stones or tarnished metal, but you can still use individual pieces to create mosaic designs, wall art and new jewelry. Vintage jewelry can also be a poignant part of a memory display box.

Rings, Pins and Pendants

Recycle old earrings and broaches into new rings, pins and pendants. Remove the backs from old earrings and broaches with wire cutters and attach the decorative designs to ring forms. Make a necklace pendant by attaching the old brooch or earring to a swatch of felt or a mosaic glass tile. Glue or stitch a jump ring to the back of the pendant so you can hang it on a chain.To turn a single post earring into a pin, glue a pin finding onto the back of the earring. Jeweler’s glue works to attach the old jewelry to new findings.

Wall Art

Embellish picture frames, mirrors and wreath forms with old jewelry to create decorative wall art. Glue old necklace strands, earrings and broaches around the border of a picture frame or a mirror. Create sparkling wreaths by wrapping the wreath frame in rich, dark velvet and covering it with old jewelry.

Mosaics

Include old jewelry as part of an eclectic mosaic design to add sparkle and dimension to your decor. Missing stones and broken clasps will not be as noticeable when they are mixed in with beads, tiles and broken pieces of ceramic. Create a mosaic table top, steppingstone, wall fountain or garden ball using a mixture of old jewelry pieces.

Shadow Box

Showcase vintage jewelry in a shadow box display as part of a memorial. A great grandmother’s pearls may not be real, but they can add charm and style to a shadow box designed to honor her. Include photos, old gloves, hankies, keys, dried flowers and other small items that your grandmother owned in the memorial display.

About the Author

Katherine Kally is a freelance writer specializing in eco-friendly home-improvement projects, practical craft ideas and cost-effective decorating solutions. Kally's work has been featured on sites across the Web. She holds a Bachelor of Science in psychology from the University of South Carolina and is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.