If basic necklaces, earrings, and bracelets aren't exciting anymore, it's time to think outside the box. Making jewelry for a hobby means that there are no limitations as to what can be made. Here are a few creative jewelry ideas that will help anyone get started on fun and unique projects.
1. A Harness
Harnesses show up on the fashion runways with regularity, so why not interpret the trend with homemade jewelry? A basic harness shape runs around the neck, then down over the front of the torso, and then around the torso at the ribcage or stomach. Other types of harness can be formed from two large circles of chain running over each shoulder and hanging down and connecting in the middle of the torso.
Try making a simple harness using lengths of lightweight chain. Form the harness shape first, using jump rings to fasten the lengths of chain together. Then, when the harness is completed, trim off the extra chain. Try variations on this basic shape by adding extra strands of chains in different sections of the harness. In the center of the harness, where the two halves are joined, try increasing or decreasing the length of the joined area. Since harnesses are commonly made from chain, it is easy to use jump rings to add beads or charms to different parts of a harness.
2. Embellished Hair Combs
Basic hair combs are great for creating simple and elegant hairstyles. But adding a jewelry element to these pieces can make something far more striking. Instead of relying on a glue gun, use basic jewelry supplies. Wrap a thin wire around the comb, in between the teeth. While wrapping, thread beads onto the wire so that they lie against the front of the comb. Pendants can be used so that they hang down over the hair when the comb is in place.
Alternatively, wrap two combs with wire and use jump rings to connect a line or lines or chain between the combs. Put each comb on the opposite side of a bun or updo, and let the chains drape over the hair. Beads and pendants can even be added to the connecting chain to create elaborate hairdos. In fact, once a layer of wire has been added to plain plastic hair combs, almost any regular jewelry element can easily be attached to the combs, using jump rings. Experiment with different styles and designs.
3. Belly Chains
Belly chains come in and out of popularity. These are generally a long chain with a clasp so that they can fit somewhat loosely over the hips. Belly chains are most often seen in the summer as a great accessory over swimwear. To make a basic belly chain, just hold a chain as loosely or tightly as is desired, and mark the length. Cut off the excess chain, and attach a clasp to the ends. It is easy to hang charms or pendants from a basic belly chain. Another variation is to cut shorter lengths of chain, a few inches long, and attach them to the main chain so that they drape down in short arcs.
If a summery belly chain doesn't sound appealing, use a heavier chain to create a belly chain that can be worn over clothing, like a loose belt. Use larger, chunky beads to add color. Coordinate so that the chain links will fit into the chosen clasp, and the result is an adjustable metal belt. Hook clasps are often a great choice for larger chains.
4. Sunglasses Jewelry
Glasses and sunglasses are usually only associated with jewelry when people think of dowdy eyeglass chains looped around a person's neck. However, there is no reason that these chains have to be plain or boring. Form a loop of wire that will fit snugly over the glasses's arms, and use a crimping bead to secure it. Then, string beads, spacers, and other items along the wire as if it were a regular necklace. Or, run a chain along the top of the sunglasses frame, and let it hang down from the hinges. The simple glasses chain can become a statement piece just by changing its placement.
If that doesn't seem daring enough, try attaching wire or chains in multiple places along the glasses. A chain draping between the ear and the hinge of the sunglasses will be eye-catching and exotic. Need a gift for the man who has everything? Drape a chain between the two hinges of a pair of sunglasses so that the chain falls in front of the face, just below the nose. Attach multiple shorter lengths of chain along every link that covers the face. Men and women with a sense of humor will love the look of their new instant jewelry mustache.
5. Leg Jewelry
Leg jewelry makes a stunning accessory for a night out on the town. Measure a band of chain just below the knee, and cut to length. Attach a clasp for a simple leg bracelet. Perhaps, hang the band with beads and charms to an eye-catching effect. Add an anklet, and run a chain or two between the two pieces, or try attaching shorter pieces of chain along every other link in the main band for a fringe effect.
For an even more extreme look, start with a garter or the cut-off top of a thigh-high stocking. Hang chains down from the thigh so that the jewelry peeks out from under a skirt or dress. Try hanging two chains from the garter band so that they hang in the front and back of the leg and reach the ankle or calf. Then, connect the front and back chains with side chains every few inches. Give enough slack so that the piece can be put on and taken off. The slack will also let the side chains drape gently along the leg. Try this variation with the chains all the way down the leg or so they stop just above the knee.
6. Shoe Jewelry
Even shoes can use a little extra style sometimes. For some basic shoe jewelry, start with a simple chain anklet with a clasp. Try attaching multiple lengths of chain, in various lengths, to the sides of the anklet. This will result in a cascading series of arcs that drape over the top of the shoe. For a more complex look, attach one longer chain that can run underneath the heel of a high-heeled shoe, in the arch of the shoe. This will not only keep the shoe jewelry in place better, but it can also make the piece seem more edgy and more like a part of the shoe.