Washer Necklace Tutorial – Frugal Handmade Gifts

Homemade Washer NecklacesIt is the time of year when so many people are making special Christmas gifts to give. I love receiving handmade gifts as well as giving them. Here is a frugal homemade gift idea that’s easy and fun to make, doesn’t break the bank and looks wonderful! You’ll even want to make some for yourself!

  • Flat or Fender washers: These can be found at any hardware or home improvement store, such as Home Depot, Lowes or Ace Hardware. You can use different sizes too!
  • Dimensional Glaze: Dimensional glazes give a thick protective layer and are good for flat pieces to give them a glass-like surface. There are MANY different types and brands. I used Glossy Accents. Some other popular ones are Crystal Effects and Crystal Lacquer.
  • Patterned paper: You can use scrapbook paper, wrapping paper, newspaper, pages from a dictionary or magazines.
  • Sand Paper:
  • Glue: Any glue suitable to glue your paper to the washer such as Mod Podge, E6000


1. Trace the washer onto your paper and cut or punch out.2. Apply glue (Mod Podge or E600) to the washer. Place the cut out paper circle onto washer and smooth out any bubbles or wrinkles. Using a pencil, push through center hole.Let your glue set a couple minutes. 

3. Use your sand paper or emery board and sand the edges to remove excess paper and get a cleaner line. Roll sand paper to sand inside circle.

4. Apply your Dimensional Glaze (Glossy Accents, Crystal Effects or Crystal Lacquer).Be sure to get glaze all the way to the edges.Let glaze completely dry with washer laying flat.Most glazes take at least 24 hours.5. Add any embellishments now such as wire, beads, rhinestones. The possibilities are endless.

6. Attach to your chosen necklace material.
Thank you Heidi for inviting me! I hope you’ve enjoyed this tutorial and it has inspired you to make some great necklaces of your own that you can share with us! You can find me at Easy Frugal Living, drop by and say hi!

{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 michelle December 7, 2010 at 2:34 pm

LOVE this and made a necklace yesterday! I was curious if you knew how to make the cord part of the necklace cheaply as premade cord necklaces were 1.99 at my local craft store (Joann’s).


2 Heidi December 7, 2010 at 4:06 pm

Hmm, I’m not sure. I think they sell the cord separately (in the section that has rik rak), but you would have to attach the clasp yourself (and I’m not sure how much those cost).


3 LisaB December 12, 2010 at 11:10 pm

Michelle I buy hemp cord for $1 at the Dollar Tree store. Then I use an adjustable knot to finish it off. No other supplies are needed when you use the adjustable knot. Here is two tutorials on how to make the knots. One is a very simple knot, the other is a little more sophisticated.
Simple: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6B38uTxxdYY
Sophisticated: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0NN9loNl9PA

Hope this helps!


4 Heidi December 12, 2010 at 11:26 pm

Awesome! Thanks 🙂


5 Suzanne with Laughing Wallet December 8, 2010 at 1:38 pm

Those are really cool! I’m not the craftiest person in the world, but these sound pretty straight-forward, and you could make a bunch of different ones all at once and knock out a nice chunk of your Christmas list!

I have a page on my website, Laughing Wallet, about homemade gift ideas: http://www.laughingwallet.com/homemade-gifts.html. This would be a great addition to the list if you’d like to add it!


6 Heidi December 8, 2010 at 8:20 pm

Thanks Suzanne, I tried to add it, but there isn’t a place to link (just re-type it out, which I do not want to do – bad for SEO).


7 Suzanne with Laughing Wallet December 9, 2010 at 2:46 pm

Hmmmm….will it let you upload a photo of the necklaces and a short description of what they are with the URL back to this post?

I know what you mean about the SEO for just reposting the content, so that makes sense. I *think* you could put the URL in the comment body (where it says “Tell us your idea”), though, and even if it didn’t become a live link, with the photo, I think you’d get some folks who’d pop over to take a look. It’s such a neat idea, I love to send some folks your way!


8 Jane February 16, 2011 at 7:42 am

Your tutorial is an awesome inspiration! Many thanks for sharing. I would like to feature your designs at http://www.handmade-jewelry-club.com/

Kindly contact me here if you have a concern.



9 Heidi February 17, 2011 at 11:28 pm

You’re welcome Jane 🙂


10 Diamond Engagement Rings December 18, 2013 at 6:25 am

They’re actually looking wonderful! Thanks for that tutorial, I’ll surely try it out.


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