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At our workshops and beading parties we've always encouraged beaders to redesign jewelry using components from older pieces. Sometimes broken pieces.  Why not? If you remake it, the jewelry will be updated and wearable. Brooches or even clip on earrings can be incorporated into necklaces. Read on for some wonderful tutorials and inspiration.

The Brooch Ribbon Necklace tutorial from the Martha Stewart site uses inexpensive costume brooches - all kinds - and made consistent with some copper spray paint which is rubbed off before it's quite dry. Some jump rings and a bit of ribbon - viola!

Terri O's Necklace Refashion tutorial also includes a video of how she created a new asymmetrical necklace from some old jewelry. She also made sure the new necklace could in turn be easily taken apart for a new design in the future!

Dive over on Cut Out and Keep completed two wonderful wire wrapping projects using parts from jewelry which were past their best. Her first project involved a cameo brooch which was already coming apart because the glue was so old.

She removed the cameo and saved it for another project. What you see is the result of her efforts combining the cameo setting and beads from her mother's old clip on earrings. Her project description outlines how she added a backing to give the piece visual depth.

Her wire wrapped cuff bracelet below features a flower bead from another pair of her mother's clip on earrings. Mom must have quite a few. My mother had a number too - it must have been very popular back in their day. Alas, my mother got rid of hers a long time ago.

Martha Stewart has wonderful instructions and ideas to use up your old jewelry. I particularly like the shoulder strap inspiration shown here..

More jewelry makeovers:

Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 


  1. THESE ARE AMAZING!!! And I just happen to have a pretty good collection of old jewellery. Now I wish I hadn't weeded out a bunch of 'inferior' pieces some time ago... Oh, the potential! I must go 'hunting' immediately! :-D I got a little behind in my post-reading and almost missed this one. Very glad I checked back as I think this is my favourite inspiration of all!! Thank you again Pearl!

  2. Great post. Good tips in the projects.


  3. These ARE amazing! I love this style. I actually just blogged about something really similar!

    <3 Melissa -

  4. I think working with "salvaged treasure" is one of the great joys of fashioning jewelry. Some of the old pieces are clever and unique, things you don't see today.
    And yes the ladies of the 50's had quite a wardrobe of earrings and most all of them were clip-ons. Believe it or not, when my mother came to the USA from Italy, she had pierced ears, most Europeans did, but she saw that all the women in the states wore clip-ons as their ears were not pierced. Also very few places carried earrings for pierced my mother began wearing clip-ons. The ladies wore those earrings everywhere, they may have been on the beach in a swim suit and barefooted, but they had their clip-on earrings firmly in place.

    Back in the 70's I wanted to buy my mother a pair of pretty stud earrings but after so many years the piercing of her ears had grown shut. Funny how times have changed, now it's hard to find much selection in clip-ons. Fashion is cyclic.


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