So the classic geographic question in the states: is it soda, pop, or Coke where you live? I had a hard time trying to decide what to call this one today. I asked on Facebook last week, and most of you said when you open a can of indulgent bubbly beverage, it’s a soda. (Though I love that in New Zealand, it’s “fizzy”.) Then it came up that even on a soda, these are pop tabs, because they “pop” the cans open. So, I give up, today I’m going to show you how to make a soda pop tab bracelet, haha. Whatever you call it – this project is a lot of fun! (Oh, and I have to thank the friend who mentioned that a carbonated canned beverage is a beer. Fair enough.)
This is actually a very easy project if you are handy with the jump rings. I made up both versions of this bracelet in under an hour. Here is what you will need:
- 12 pop tabs for each bracelet (for an average woman’s 7″ wrist. More or less, if yours is larger or smaller.)
- 27 – 5mm jump rings
- One clasp, and one large 8-10mm jump ring
- Long nosed jewelry pliers
- Optionally, 12 teardrop beads or small dangling charms, and 12 additional jump rings
First, remove your tabs from your cans by bending them back and forth until they snap off. If you get any sharp edges, you can file them down with a small file. (And yes, you can see I’m wildly unsuccessful at quitting my Diet Mountain Dew habit. :P You can tell me all day long how bad it is for me, but it’s my favorite. I have one almost every day.)
But I have a whole bin of returnables (because we live in Michigan, and bottle deposits means that there’s an eternal collection of cans collecting in the garage waiting to be recycled) – so I just raided that for supplies. You will need about a dozen tabs for each bracelet. Once you have washed and dried them, attach them as shown below with 5mm jump rings.
When you’ve created your aluminum chain, it’s easiest if you attach a clasp. That will give you a fit that won’t slide off your wrist. If you’re not comfortable with adding a clasp, you can add 1-2 more tabs and just connect them together. The bracelet only needs to be large enough to slip over the largest part of your hand if you go this route – don’t make it too big, or it will keep sliding off.
To attach a clasp, add two jump rings to the end of your chain, and close them. slip one more ring through those two, and add a clasp of your choice (I prefer lobster clasps for bracelets). Do the same thing on the other end of your chain, adding a large ring instead of a small one and a clasp.
Finally, you can add beads if you like! These are a teardrop shaped glass bead, but you can also make a charm and add that. (If you’d like a how-to for making your own charms, check out my video tutorial for making charm bracelets.)
At a glance, it doesn’t even look like recycled pieces! It’s just a fun, chunky chain.
I love how it turned out. Ever since my daughter and I made our recycled bird feeders, it’s had me thinking about other ways to recycle and upcycle.
Got your own twist on this idea? Let’s hear it!