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Make a Wind chime with Washers and other Decorative Ideas

Updated on June 12, 2013

My first attempt at a wind chime used old keys and bits of glass. Once I had made this and was successful at achieving the "tinkling" sound I wanted, I started tapping nearly every metal thing I ran across to see what kind of noise it would make. I settled on washers for my next wind chime. These are additional decorative ideas that I have actually tried so I thought I would include them in a separate hub to keep the other one from getting far too lengthy. For more inspiration and further details please see my other wind chime instructional hub.

If you choose not to paint the outside of your can after six months, it is more than likely going to look like this.

What happens without paint.
What happens without paint.
Click thumbnail to view full-size
Color #1Rubber bandsColor #2 on top of rubber bandsRemove the rubber bands.
Color #1
Color #1
Rubber bands
Rubber bands
Color #2 on top of rubber bands
Color #2 on top of rubber bands
Remove the rubber bands.
Remove the rubber bands.

How to Paint the Outside

Here is one option should you choose to paint the outside to avoid the rust.

  1. Choose one, two, or maybe even three colors. A dark and light would work well and create a nice contrast.
    ~~~ Lighter colors should be on the bottom for best results. If you choose to place the darker color below you may need to put up to three coats of the lighter color to fully cover it.
  2. Spray the can with color #1 and let dry per instructions.
    ~~~Any indoor/outdoor paint or even specifically outdoor paint will work well.
  3. Add 7 or 8 rubber bands, overlapping however looks good to you.
  4. Spray second color and let dry per instructions.
  5. Remove rubber bands and commence with hanging your washers or keys.

How to make all your washers hang the correct length.
How to make all your washers hang the correct length.

Adding Melted Pony Beads

Melted pony beads? Now that's a new one. It is only if you haven't read my other Hub "How to Make a Sun Catcher".

If you follow the instructions in that Hub and save a few you can add them to this craft for even more color.

I discovered that the pony bead circles had more benefits that just looking pretty. They catch the wind a bit more since they are lighter and help swing the heavier objects into one another. There are many things you could make this weight out of if you do not want to melt the pony beads. A mini CD would work well, and you could put jewels or paint on it. A piece of glass like I used in the other wind chime would work well too.

What you basically want to strive for is an object that is lighter than your main object, suspended well enough below the rest to catch the wind, and have enough surface area to be pushed around by the wind.

Adding Glass Chunks

Another decorative item that I mentioned before was glass pieces. Flat pieces from a broken bottle, window or bowl work, but so do chunks. When we bought our house, we found old trash burn piles and in them we found fused glass chunks, which I saved and used in several wind chimes. Fusing glass is nasty business, and actually really hard because you need extreme temperatures and consistently high temperatures. Not only that, colored glass has ghastly chemicals and toxins that are released when you melt it. I have yet to be successful at fusing my own glass, but I know that there are places that can do it for you. And I am sure you can find several instructional manuals on the process on the web.

If you want glass chunks like mine do some research and you might get lucky to find a place or two relatively close to you that works with glass. Contact them and they may be willing to give or sell their scrap glass workings to you for relatively cheap. If you have a rock/crystal place near you, you might find it there too. We live near a hot springs tourist area and there are a lot of rock places that have these chunks of melted glass for sale.


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      6 months ago

      What string to you use to keep them from tangleing. Nylon fishing line tangles.


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