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 uses for old or broken body jewelry

We all want to recycle, (especially on Earth Day!) but certain items can pose a challenge, especially where body jewelry is concerned.  Don’t worry though, because we’ve still got some easy ways to repurpose what you have, and some of them involve a little extra fun too.


If you’ve got a bulletin board at home, in your school locker, or at the office, try using your favorite old stud earrings as push pins.  This is a great way to get further use out of earrings that have lost their mate, and it brings some extra style to your to-do notes and photo collages.

 old earrings as cork board push pins

It’s also fun to hang more ornate earrings from the top rim of your lampshades for some instant retro charm, or to create simple wall art with your mismatched pieces.


Ball captive rings with large diameters can be fitted around the stems of your wine glasses for use as charms.  A pair of ring opening pliers can make this process extra easy, and if you use a different color ball on each BCR, everyone will be able to tell exactly which glass is theirs.

 captive rings as wine charms

You can also use captives and segment rings as closures for broken bracelets or necklaces that are missing their clasp.

Nipple Rings

The decorative portions of your old nipple shields make beautiful hair ornaments in a pinch.  Just remove the barbell and slip a couple bobby pins through the openings to secure the piece, and voilà.


Old plugs are great for repurposing into refrigerator magnets.  Just grab some magnetic strips with self-adhesive backing from the craft store, attach some to the back of the plug, embellish as much or as little as you like, and throw it on the fridge.  This is a great project for kids, especially since simpler plugs can be decorated with glitter glue, stickers, or magic marker.

 making refrigerator magnets out of old plugs

You can also turn your plugs into a jewelry display hanger for your wall.  For this awesome repurposing project, you’ll need:

• a strip of wood from your local hardware or craft store

• quick setting epoxy or a hot glue gun (whichever you prefer)

• three to six of your old plugs

• some ribbon or twine

• a ruler or tape measure and a pencil

1. Get your wood, making sure that the dimensions will support the size of your plugs.  (For example: one inch diameter plugs need a strip of wood that’s at least 1.5″ tall)

2. Use your ruler and pencil to mark as many equidistant dots as there are plugs.  Soft horizontal lines can be drawn through the dots to further assist with placement if desired.

 marking your wood

3. Glue on your plugs, decorative side up, making sure to wait as long as your glue’s instructions indicate to be certain it’s dry.  Then glue a length of your ribbon or twine onto the back side of the wood strip, with one end at each corner.

 gluing your plugs in place

4. After everything is completely dry, use the ribbon to hang your new display knobs on the wall, and hang up your favorite bracelets and necklaces.

hang and display your jewelry

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