by Rena Klingenberg.
A charm bracelet can be a wonderful way to wear words of wisdom that you’d like to remember throughout the day.
In this tutorial we’ll stamp words from a phrase onto metal jewelry blanks of various shapes – and turn the phrase into a bracelet.
For this project you’ll need a quote or verse – from a song, a poem, a spiritual teaching, a favorite author, a movie, or whatever resonates with you.
Make sure you’ll be able to fit your words on the metal pieces you’ll be stamping them onto! 🙂
The quote I used is 5 words long – and the longest word is just 5 letters.
The quote I chose for my bracelet is a line from this writing by Rumi, a 13th-century Persian poet and Sufi mystic:
You were born with potential.
You were born with goodness and trust.
You were born with ideals and dreams.
You were born with greatness.
You were born with wings.
You are not meant for crawling, so don’t.
You have wings.
Learn to use them and fly.
- Metal stamping blanks – one for each word for your quote.
You can find the blanks at craft stores, Etsy.com, most jewelry suppliers, Amazon.com, etc.
If you don’t have a local craft store, do an online search for “jewelry metal stamping blanks” – you’ll find a ton of them in all sizes, shapes, and metal colors.
I used antiqued brass ones, and decided to mix round and square ones for my bracelet:
- Chain – it needs to be sturdy enough to support the charms you’ll hang on it, and long enough to go around your wrist (see my Bracelet Size Guide).
I used a chain in an antiqued silver finish, to contrast with my stamped metal charms:
- Jump rings, one for each stamped piece of metal, and one for attaching your clasp. I used jump rings that match the color of my chain:
- Bracelet clasp – I used a handmade hook clasp for one end of the chain, and a jump ring for the other end of the chain – both in the color of my antiqued-silver finish chain:
- Metal stamps – a set of letter stamps for “writing” the words on your metal blanks.
- Jeweler’s steel block – or other hard, smooth, sturdy surface for hammering your stamps on your metal blanks.
- Hammer – for your letter stamps. I use a regular hardware store hammer on my stamps.
- Chain nose / flat nose pliers – for opening and closing jump rings.
- Super-fine tip black permanent marker – for darkening your stamped lettering. I used an ultra-thin Sharpie marker.
- Rubbing alcohol – for removing the excess ink from your stamped metal blanks.
- (Optional) Beads on headpins or other items to hang on your bracelet chain for extra embellishment.
- (Optional) Small piece of non-skid rubberized shelf liner, to put under your steel block so it won’t move around while you hammer.
How to Make the
Stamped Quote Charm Bracelet:
Are You New to Metal Stamping?
You may want to have a quick look at my tutorial, Metal Stamps – Tips & Techniques before you start this project.
We’ll start by stamping the words on our metal blanks.
If you’re using a piece of non-skid rubberized shelf liner under your steel block, place it on your work surface:
Then set your steel block on top of the shelf liner:
Now it’s time to stamp your metal blanks one at a time.
Before stamping the word on each of your metal blanks, set out all of the letter stamps you’ll need for that word, and put the stamps in order.
Organizing your stamps in advance can help prevent stamping “typos”!
Hold your letter stamp straight up and down, so you’ll make a good impression of each letter on the metal blank:
If you have trouble getting the whole letter to make a good impression in the metal, try rocking the stamp slightly toward you first, and hitting it with your hammer:
. . . and then, without sliding the stamp on the metal, rocking the stamp slightly away from you and hitting it again with your hammer:
Since my metal stamping blanks have a sort of patterned antique surface, the stamped letters don’t show up very well:
So I’m darkening the letters by using my super-fine tip Sharpie marker to fill in the letter grooves with ink:
This is how my darkened letters look after inking (before cleaning off the excess ink):
Now you can use a small scrap of paper towel with a few drops of rubbing alcohol to quickly wipe away the excess ink from your metal.
The ink stays in the stamped grooves of your letters:
After the alcohol cleanup, the ink makes the stamped word stand out nicely:
Here’s how all of my stamped word charms look after stamping, inking, and alcohol cleanup:
Now it’s time to attach the word charms to your bracelet chain.
I started with the word that’s in the middle of my quote, and attached it to the middle of the chain.
Use your pliers to twist open a jump ring (if you’re new to using jump rings, see my quick tip on How to Open and Close Jump Rings).
Thread the jump ring through the hole in your stamped metal piece:
Now thread the jump ring through the desired link on your chain, and twist the jump ring shut again (I hung my center charm on the center link in my chain):
Now your bracelet should look something like this:
Decide how many links you want to have between each of your stamped word charms.
Then use jump rings to hang the next two metal charms on each side of your center charm:
Keep attaching your word charms next to the previous charms, until they’re all attached to your chain (and in the proper word order for reading left to right):
Now it’s time to attach your clasp to the bracelet chain.
Twist open a jump ring and thread it through the loop of your clasp:
Attach the jump ring and clasp to one end of your bracelet chain:
Attach another jump ring to the opposite end of your bracelet chain, for hooking the clasp into when you wear the bracelet:
Now your bracelet is finished! It should look something like this: