For years, I’ve walked by baskets filled with tacky, old ladyΒ  vintage jewelry at yard sales. Since I vaguely remember hugging my grandmother, and always having to dodge the metal objects that were pinned to her chest, somehow memories of these wonders didn’t conjure up warm and cozy thoughts of beautiful art, until I met Angela.

It’s amazing how things we once passed by without a second glance, now catch our eye, and we are thrilled. Like this entire lot of costume and antique jewelry at a yard sale. I asked her how much she would take for all of it and after much deliberation and thought, she mentioned, “$3.” I squealed (but only in my head, I assure you.) Typically, one or two pieces might sell for that much on -line.

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder,” states the famous quote and in this case it’s so true

What I once considered trash is now a treasure. I’ve found new life for these vintage pieces. I see depths of beauty and color that I never observed before. Now my mind goes to all the wonderful DIY projects that can be created, embellished and spruced up with just a few pieces of vintage jewelry.

I love how Country Living turned vintage jewelry into refrigerator magnets.

By using a pair of needle-nose pliers to remove the hardware from the back of each brooch, and then affixing a superstrong magnet with a small bead of glue (love Gorilla Super Glue), fridges will be the most hip spot in the house.


My Frugal Fashionista side went crazy with this fun re-purposed belt.

Do you know how many ugly $1 belts there are at thrift stores? I bet this was one of them before it was turned into a treasure?

She truly has a fun gift of re-creating Trash to Treasure.

Do you remember my quick kitchen cabinet redo where I spray painted all my cabinet knobs?

matching kitchen appliances opt Spray Painting Cabinet Knobs

It was a great, cost effective quick fix, but seeing this next idea makes me think outside the box for other redos I’ll be doing with painted knobs.

How fun are these?

Use the same directions as above and super glue the costume jewelry right onto the knobs for a unique, costume look.

At every yard sale and thrift store I walk into, there are old, sad, white lampshades that need a home. In fact, I am sure I have a few of these in my attic. What a great idea to spruce up a plan lampshade and make a unique statement piece just by pinning on a few old pieces of jewelry.
At my friend Heather’s home, I noticed her amazing Christmas tree completely made out of old jewelry.
The jewelry has been in the family, and I couldn’t help but this was a wonderful heirloom piece they created.

Wouldn’t this be fun to pass down with so many stories tied to different pieces? (Or if there aren’t, start making those family stories now.:))

The rest of these ideas are Angela’s. She is the one who initially inspired me to start looking for vintage jewelry, and continues to amaze me with how she will see junk in a pile on the side of the road, and within hours, it’s something she can sell in her boutique.
It’s a gift, I tell you, and that’s why she is speaking on Trash to Treasure at my Becoming Conference.
These just show how she’s embellished a few things, but I love them all.

By taking two wood stakes she found on a walk one day, she created a beautiful cross to hang in her craft room.

Use vintage jewelry to embellish craft flowers.
Are your creative juices flowing yet?
She loves to cut fabric scraps and make them into art.
And of course, clip any old jewelry pieces onto shoes or purses to make one of a kind Frugal Fashionista statements.
Hopefully this has inspired you just a bit to start looking at things around your home in new ways.
With the kids getting out of school soon, some of these would be some great craft ideas.
I plan on letting them paint an old box and embellish it with vintage jewelry, so that our girls can store all their treasures in their very own hand made, one of a kind DIY piece.

Have you ever decorated or made crafts with old jewelry?