Introduction: Simple Paperclip Necklace

Picture of Simple Paperclip Necklace

I've been wanting to make this for a while and I've finally found the time to do it.  This necklace only takes beads and paperclips to make and is fairly simple.  You are just making the same thing over and over again and then hooking those things together. 

Hope you like it :)

Step 1: What You Need

Picture of What You Need
Here is what you are going to need to get started.


* You can use any beads you want, but your paperclip cut lengths will probably be different then.

Step 2: Getting Your Paperclips Ready

Picture of Getting Your Paperclips Ready

You need to start off by straightening the paperclips.  Use the needle nose pliers and carefully unbend all of the paperclips you need.  I used about 10 paperclips total.  Once they are straight, you are going to need to cut them to size.  I will show in the next step how to tell how big you want them, or you can cut one and see how it works and then go from there.

Mine were just under 1.5 in. or 3.7 cm. long.  So I was able to get 2 pieces out of each paperclip with a bit leftover.

Step 3: Making Your Pieces

Picture of Making Your Pieces
Now it is time to make your pieces.  Get your cut paperclips, round nose pliers, and beads ready.  You are going to need to make a test one to get the size.
  1. Take the end of the paperclip (if they aren't cut yet, you will just use a full length straightened one like in my pictures) and grab it with the pliers (Picture 2).  Where you grab the paperclip on the pliers will determine the size of the loop you are making. (See image notes of Picture 2.)
  2. Wrap it around the round nose pliers (Picture 3).
  3. Now you have an off to the side loop (Picture 4).
  4. You can leave the loop off to the side, I didn't like that.  To bend it center, grab the loop near where the end has wrapped around to meet the long part of the paperclip and bend the loop back (Picture 5 and 6).
  5. Put on the beads you want, I went small - big - small (Picture 7).
  6. Push the beads to the loop you made and, leaving space, bend over the paperclip starting a loop like in 2 (Picture 8).
  7. Take a guess of how much more you need and cut the paperclip (Picture 8).  
  8. Close the other loop (Picture 9).  If there isn't enough to make another loop, you know you cut too small.  If there is too much to your liking, you can unbend that last loop and cut a little more off.  When you have the right length, you can unbend it and measure, or you can guess based on how much of the paperclip you have left.  Measure up a full straightened paperclip against what you have left of the one you just cut.  
  9. You can make all of the pieces and then put them together, but I found it easier to make the first piece, then, when you are finishing the second, before you completely close it's second loop, hook it on the first one, then close it all the way. 
  10. Continue on like this until you have the necklace the length you want.

Yikes.  I hope that all makes sense.

Step 4: Make Your Own Clasp

Picture of Make Your Own Clasp
You can choose to use a store bought clasp, or you can go all out and make your own.  It's pretty easy and seems to work pretty well.
  1. Take one of your cut pieces that is about 3.7cm.
  2. Go about a third or a forth of the way down one side and bend it around with the round nose pliers like you did when making a loop (Picture 2).  Go as far to the tip of the pliers as you can.
  3. Once it is bent (Picture 3) use your needle nose pliers to smoosh what you just made so it is even tighter as in Picture 4.
  4. Smoosh it until it will fit through a loop at one end of your necklace (Picture 5).
  5. Holding where they overlap (like in Picture 6) with the needle nose pliers, use the round nose pliers to bend over the end you just looped and smooshed making a hook like in Picture 7.
  6. Hold the hook you just made with the needle nose pliers and, using the round nose pliers, make a loop in the other end (Picture 8).
  7. There, now you have a piece with a hook on one end and loop on the other.  Open the loop a little and hook that to one end of the necklace (Picture 11).
The hook hooks pretty loosely, but doesn't seem to come apart easily. 

Step 5: You're Done

Picture of You're Done

Well, that's it.  You can fiddle around with more paperclips and make some sort of pendant to hang from you necklace or just wear it as is.  


fillon1 (author)2015-12-22

I made 2 necklaces with this technic. I will post pictures later on. Thanks for this tutorial. :-)

Penolopy Bulnick (author)fillon12015-12-22

Awesome! I look forward to seeing them :)

fillon1 made it! (author)Penolopy Bulnick2015-12-22

Here you go: Turned out pretty good. They are Xmas gifts for my sisters.

Penolopy Bulnick (author)fillon12015-12-22

Those look great! I love the beads you used :)

fillon1 (author)Penolopy Bulnick2015-12-23

Thank you. They were beads from necklaces that broke. So I reused them. :-)

marsha.glassburn (author)2014-12-02

gr8 idea and easy

pfisk3 made it! (author)2014-07-14

And I made a second one for my little sister! (:

Penolopy Bulnick (author)pfisk32014-07-14

They both look awesome! Nice job :D

pfisk3 made it! (author)2014-07-14

I just made this and used a clasp and jump rings I already had, and I think it turned out beautiful! Thank you for the instructable, it's such a great idea!

as9 (author)2013-06-27

SO pretty! SO simple! It's so amazing you can do that with only paper clips, beads, and some pliers! You did a wonderful job! Keep it up! PS: I like the beads you chose. They all go together and don't look bad. You couldn't top that! Nobody could! It's too beautiful to make any better!

chazortiz (author)2013-06-09

WOW simple yet so charming this was a great !

lrohret (author)2012-12-27

Very elegant! Love it!

Penolopy Bulnick (author)lrohret2013-01-18

Thank you, I was really happy with how it turned out :)

jennybotha (author)2012-12-12

This is lovely-- and so easy !!! thanks Sweetie. Appreciate.

Thanks :) Glad you like it!

Brass Paperclip (author)2012-10-12

Love it! I am going to have to try this...especially with a business name like The Brass Paperclip Project. LOL

Thank you! It is rather cute for how simple looking it is!

maenumania (author)2012-10-09

I liked that idea so much that I tried it yesterday by myself, not for me of course, and after that I showed it to my girlfriend and she almost didn't believed that's made of paperclips.
Thank you for that great idea!

Thanks! I hope your girlfriend is able to do it and has fun making it :)

themoose64 (author)2012-09-26

This is very pretty. The only paperclip necklaces I've made are the one where you just clip the paper clips together. Your necklace is WAY COOLER!

Thank you very much :D

pussiedoctor (author)2012-09-23

This looks brilliant, its hard to see that it has been made with paperclips, kinda professional looking. My daughter loves making stuff like this. :-))

Thanks! I hope she gives this a try :)

1inspirit (author)2012-09-21


Thanks! I've never tired paper beads before, but I have been wanting to. Maybe it's time to give that a try :)

agis68 (author)2012-09-20

cool and cheap!!!

Penolopy Bulnick (author)agis682012-09-20

Very cheap! Especially if you get the paperclips from work and the beads for cheap from Michael's or a used craft store!

minnix2len (author)2012-09-20

it is easier to just use head/loop pins.

Yes, but not as fun :)

onrust (author)2012-09-19

pepe and cheap......I love it!

Penolopy Bulnick (author)onrust2012-09-19

Thanks :)

canucksgirl (author)2012-09-18

That's really pretty, especially for paperclips! Nicely done. :-)

Thank you :) I loved how the beads looked together and the pattern!

Carol at Natures Sol (author)2012-09-18

How great! Yes, doodlecraft- I too buy jewelry "supplies" all the time :-(. This looks great! Can't tell at all that it's paper clips. Since I'm an old-timer jewelry folk - a suggestion for everyone.

How many times have I cut a wire too short for the second loop :-(! And as you said, Penolopy, you can unbend it and measure. What I do is I save the first one I get right and use that as a "model" or sample. I then measure the rest against that one and use that one for the last set of beads.

You can actually make one loop and measure and cut for a bunch of links to be "pre-ready" for the beads and linking up! I just know the zillions of mistakes I've made over the years and am more than willing to share to save anyone else a bit of time (or maybe $).

Again, it looks beautiful. Great tutorial ♥

Great tips!

darrennie (author)2012-09-18

Awesome job, my niece is going to love this as she is aways making paperclip jewelry. Thanks.

Awesome! I'd love to see if she makes it!

shazni (author)2012-09-18

Oh yes...this is beautiful...Next time i would do beads too!
Way to go Nicole :-D

I agree with you shahanak... it is elegant...i guess i wanted everything to be with only office supplies...hence i omitted the trappings :-)

Penolopy Bulnick (author)shazni2012-09-18

Thanks! Yeah, I've been thinking of doing this necklace for a while now and I decided to use the Office Supplies Contest as an excuse to finally do it!

shahanak (author)2012-09-18

It's very elegant...i just told shazni so :-) as she has done something similar but without beads

Yes, I saw hers, so cute!

rrkrose (author)2012-09-17

This doesn't even look like paperclips! Mind=Blown! When I used to make necklaces out of paperclips it was just a bunch of paperclips strung together. :P

Penolopy Bulnick (author)rrkrose2012-09-18

Thanks! I was really happy with the result!

sunshiine (author)2012-09-17

Beautiful! I will try this with some glass beads that I have. Probably as a winter project.Thanks for sharing.

Thanks, it's pretty fun to do and goes fast once you get the hang of it :)

jessyratfink (author)2012-09-17

Lady this is awesome! Can't even tell it was made with paperclips. :D


doodlecraft (author)2012-09-17

I love this! I always buy expensive eye pins! What a fabulous trick, it looks perfect! Thanks for this budget friendly alternative! :)

Thank you! I agree. It is pretty easy to make and now you can make them as long or as short as you want :)

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