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Vinyl Records Art

Updated on September 7, 2016
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Rose is a full-time freelance writer who frequently writes about education, special education, DIY projects, food, Milwaukee, and more.


One popular method for using old records is to recycle or re-purpose them into art or functional objects. Some projects leave records in recognizable forms while others completely transform them. If you don't have old records on hand, they are readily available in bulk online. You may also be able to find good deals at garage sales or second hand stores.

I know that there is a lot of controversy out there about destroying perfectly good records for the sake of art. If you are not okay with destroying working records for projects, look for damaged records.

I have divided the ideas and tutorials here three sections:

  • Home. Bowls, butterflies, cake plates, clocks, coasters, mail holders, menus, planters, side tables, tray pedestals, wall art, wreaths.
  • Stationery. Books, book covers, notebooks, scrapbook albums.
  • Jewelry. Bracelet cuffs, flower earrings, fortune cookie key chains and necklaces, hats, purses.

Pick up old records in a local record shop or on eBay.

Rushmor Records:
2635 S Kinnickinnic Ave, Milwaukee, WI 53207, USA

get directions

Reckless Records:
1532 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL 60622, USA

get directions

Electric Fetus:
2000 4th Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55404, USA

get directions

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Vinyl Solution: painted vinyl records, stenciled and placed in a public space for people to find and keep.Miles Davis, stenciled on a vinyl record then glued to the side of a building.Menu made out of a record.
Vinyl Solution: painted vinyl records, stenciled and placed in a public space for people to find and keep.
Vinyl Solution: painted vinyl records, stenciled and placed in a public space for people to find and keep. | Source
Miles Davis, stenciled on a vinyl record then glued to the side of a building.
Miles Davis, stenciled on a vinyl record then glued to the side of a building. | Source
Menu made out of a record.
Menu made out of a record. | Source
  • Bowls. This is by far the most popular and one of the easiest ways to recycle old records. You can use these bowls for so many decorative or functional purposes. Check out this fun variation of wrapping your finished bowl with rope.
  • Butterflies. These vinyl record butterflies are all over Pinterest. I'm so happy that I was able to trace back to the original tutorial. You can hang your butterflies on the wall or let them adorn any flat surface.
  • Cake plate. Turn a couple records into a cake plate with some Plexiglass acrylic and hardware. Check out a simpler version of this idea right here.
  • Clocks. One of the most popular vinyl record art searches is for clocks. Now you can make one yourself. That first link is for a video. Here's a step by step photo tutorial for a clock record.
  • Coasters. There are a couple different kinds of coasters that people make with records. Some people choose to make coasters out of the records themselves. You can check out a video about that concept right here. Alternatively, some people choose to make coasters out of the vinyl album art. You can use a variety of materials to back the album art, such as tile and cork board.
  • Mail holder. Are you started to get the idea how many different shapes you can make from records? This is a great option for a desk or for a table by the front or back door where you need a place to sort the mail.
  • Menu. Check out the picture on the right of the restaurant menu made out of a record. How creative is that? This would be perfect for a wedding reception or dinner party.
  • Planter. This idea takes the record bowl to another level by turning that bowl into a planter. The best part about this is that the record already has a perfect drainage hole.
  • Side table. This project is one of the first vinyl record projects I found, and it inspired me to keep looking for more. All you need to make this is a planter stand, a glue gun, and a record. This is such a simple, versatile piece.
  • Tray pedestals. Take the bowl idea to another level with spray paint and sturdy plastic or glass pieces to serve as elevation. Inexpensive candle sticks would be a great option. These are perfect for parties and receptions.
  • Wall art. This blog author chose to decorate her records with puff paint before hanging them on the wall. There are a few examples of wall art and hanging art on the right. For yet another example, click here.
  • Wreaths. This tutorial uses a vinyl record for a wreath base. There are so many fun possibilities out there for decorating wreaths. You can customize this concept any way that you like.

How to make a record bowl.

How to Make a Book from a Vinyl Record

  • Book. Turn a small record into a book with the video on the right. A record also makes a great book cover.
  • Notebook. This tutorial includes a video. Check out the original inspiration for the tutorial here. Both of these notebooks have duct tape, but I'm sure that you could rig up something more sophisticated if you like.
  • Scrapbook album. Use two small records as the covers for a scrapbook album.

  • Bracelet cuff. Have you seen bracelet cuffs for sale that are made out of old records? They are very easy to make. The one in the tutorial is created from a red record and is otherwise very plain. Of could you can embellish your cuff if you like. Check out another great cuff tutorial right here.
  • Flower earrings. This tutorial requires a couple tools. I don't recommend purchasing them for exclusively for this tutorial, but if you already have them on hand, this is a great project. If you've been reading through any of the other tutorials in this article, you may already have other ideas for earrings that don't require as many specialty tools.
  • Fortune cookie key chains and necklaces. How much fun is that? I put this idea under jewelry and accessories simply because that's how the author used her cookies. They work beautifully on their own as décor and also make great party favors.
  • Hat. This is a variation on the record bowl idea. The blog author chose to make a retro inspired hat with red trim, lace, and a fabric flower. You can decorate your hat to coordinate with a variety of outfits and fashion styles.
  • Purse. There are step by step photos for this tutorial, but you will need some basic sewing and hardware skills to complete this without consulting any other references. Check out another great record purse over here.

Vinyl Record Bracelets

High Fidelity - autobiographical record collection scene

Using Vinyl Records to Produce Art

© 2012 Rose Clearfield


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