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Cut fabric to fit securely behind the frame, securing it to the back or cut a piece of cardboard to fit if it doesn't have one.
Stitch your keys on, either through the eye or other place on the key.
You can also stitch the keys in place before the fabric is attached to the back.
Next, fit the back with the fabric and secure it with staples or small nails.
If you want to you can add picture hanging wire or even attach a pop tab to the back (or two) to hang it on the wall.
The frame I used wasn't deep enough to do this project using glass in the front.
By Melody_yesterday from Otterville, MO
Editor's Note: Caution: These old keys are usually made from lead. Keep away from young children.
Purchase an inexpensive Styrofoam cone, actually more of a pyramid, at a craft store. Get one about 8-10 inches tall, that has sides (or larger, if you have a lot of old keys and only want to make one).
Paint the old keys gold. Painting only one side is okay. If more color is needed, use metallic paint of additional hues for some/all of the keys.
The natural sparkle of the Styrofoam seems to lend a bit of a festive air to the decoration, so no paint is needed on the tree itself.
Using straight pins, stick one where you want the top of a key to go, leaving about 1/4 inch sticking out. Hang a key on this, then use another key to prop the key at whatever angle you wish. Keep doing this until you have created the look you desire. Leaving blank spaces between keys gives an attractive look.
You can also made the trees in several sizes with the corresponding keys: small cone, luggage keys, etc. Also, varying the sizes of keys on the larger cones is an option.
I have one that I made years ago, and it still looks great!
By varying the Styrofoam shapes you could also make other decorations, such as cylinders for faux candles, cubes, etc.
Source: A craft magazine back in the 70s, I think.
By Cay from Green Cove Springs, FL
This is a guide about key wind chime. Many people enjoy the soothing sounds of wind chimes. You can make your own using old keys.
With keys and locks being a fashionable jewelry theme right now, you can make trendy pieces for very little. I put a large key from an antique store on a ball chain for a great casual necklace.
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I love to find new uses for old things. I have tons of keys and was wondering if anyone had any idea what could be done with them?
A wind chime? Use fishing line to tie them to a stick
Make a Christmas wreath with them. Paint them green, red, or gold. Sprinkle with glitter. Hot glue to a circle of wood, styrofoam, etc.... Add bows or whatever.
How about "Santa's Magic Key". Make the note below and attach it to the key with a ribbon.
"We don't have a chimney for you to climb through, but if you don't visit my our house I don't know what I'll do.
Some say you are magic and can use any old key. As long as we hang it out in a place you're sure to see.
So we're leaving this old key right outside our door
Saying our prayers, jumping in bed, and we won't worry anymore."
I've also seen them framed in groups or by themselves in shadow boxes. You could use old newspaper or scrapbook paper to get the look shown.
Okay, two more ideas and I'm done! :)
Making some jewelry (earrings, bracelets, pendants or even keychains) would be cool.
Another idea is to embellish addressbooks or scrapbook pages with them. Good luck!
My sister is collecting them to make a squash blossom style necklace.
I've seen them used in bird cages for the birds to play with.
Or make a "keyring" for the little ones to keep in their purses. Or put a few on a split ring for the babies to play with. (sterilize first) Or, slip them in the hems of curtains to weigh the curtains down so they will hang straighter.
If you have a framed mirror or can find one cheap. Glue the keys to the frame in whatever order or fashion you want. It is great for changing your boring old mirror into something that will make people stop and say wow!
You can also use the keys in card making or scrap booking, altered art. Their are many many uses for your keys. Just think outside the box!
Our daughter made a beautiful sounding wind chime from old keys. The top of the wind chime was the bottom of a two liter soda bottle. Holes were punched with an icepick and nylon string used to hang the keys. It has lasted 18 years; this year I restrung it. It has a beautiful tone.
Please don't give old (or new) keys to infants or toddlers. They are a lead poisoning hazard.
If you have any left and want to be done with them, you might want to give them to a school - - to use as "counters" to help younger kids with math skills. I had a small box of them in my second grade classroom and the kids loved them!
I saw a TV show where they soldered/welded them together to make tables, plant stands, and other stuff. You need lots of keys, planning, and a great bit of imagination, but the items looked really neat.
I want ideas on what to do with different kinds of keys? Thanks.
By Sue from IL
Does anyone know of any organization collecting keys for children whose homes have no chimneys? I have a bunch to get rid of and would love to donate to this specific program.
By Gem from Gordonsville, VA