How to Make Painted Washer Necklaces

November 27, 2010

The latest DIY (do it yourself) tutorial is how to make washer necklaces!

These necklaces are pretty popular... I've had so many people ask what I use to make them, because the paint shimmers so beautifully. I always feel kind of sheepish and kind of genius when I say, "It's just fingernail polish!"

You will need:
Fingernail polish in fun colors
Clear fingernail polish
Paper towels to keep your workspace clean

My sister painting her washer necklace
 Step one is to put down a base coat. Feel free to do textures-- they work beatifully. 

You can rub the polish on smoothly, dab in little circles, create textured lines...

Some textures
Your base coat can be two colors, like the one my sister was working on!

Once the base coat has dried, paint with another color and add polka dots, stripes, etc. I like go go through with a toothpick and do a painting or bit of calligraphy.

You don't even have to wait for the base coat to dry to put on other colors! Here you can see a wet base coat with colorful polka dots. I then used a toothpick to blend the colors in for a fun and spunky pattern of swirls!

Next, and this is very important: once the paints have dried, coat your entire washer with clear fingernail polish. This protects the paint from chipping off.

The front...

Silly me forgot to take pictures before the craft fair, so I snagged these real quick. Click to enlarge and see our designs!

...and the back.

To put the necklaces on a cord, string some cord through the washer and tie it off. Then come through with your chain, using the cord to attach it. I didn't explain that very well, so just click to enlarge the picture above. The washer on the left, with the black and yellow cord, shows what I mean fairly well.

These pictures show how pretty the fingernail polish looks in different lighting. Both pictures are of the same washer!

Such a fun and easy project! Let me know if you try it! Leave a link in the combox (comments box) with a link to your own blog post or to a picture! 

You Might Also Like


  1. Love it, can you make swirls to look like enamel??
    It also looks like a fun thing to do.

  2. Enamel... Not sure what you mean. :P

    It is fun! And easy, too!

  3. O how fun!! Iam gonna have to try this!! You have great ideas!!

  4. Love this! I think my first graders can make something for mom for Mother's Day!


Like us on Facebook


Flickr Images