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?
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.
Use as a paper weight.
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
I have many old keys and thought this would be a great way to use some of them. I'm having a problem visualizing this though. Is there a way you could post a picture of the one you have?
A doorbell or a window intruder alarm.
Each using several keys as the clanger.
1-Doorbell drill a hole through the doorknob side of the door frame.
Run though the hole a piece of electrical wire
Secure to that wire a length of fishing line.
Now you make your bell or even a key windchime.
Me I used an old juice can poke a hole on the bottom .cut out the other top ran my fishing line into the can tied and taped the line to a small pencil.
Then I attched and strung 4 keys at different lengths of line. I hung the Key Bell on the joice in the center of my ceiling right off from the living room---Then I secured the exposed fishing line with screendoor eye hooks The small hand screw in kind.
After threading I resesecured the fishing line to loop I made on the eletrical wire.
On the outside I secured on the same type of a loop One of those old Lucky charm /Ceiling Fan ? Rabbits foot chains. Mine was the chain complete with the Rabbits foot.
The slightest pull of the Rabbits foot would set the can to rocking and the keys hitting the inside of the can. ( Oh you can decorate the bell can anyway you like of just use the key wind chime if you want
I simple attached through eyelets the fishing line to the top of the window then attached several keys to the line so that if the window is opn the keys will hit the window glass swaying back and forth a few times.
And There You Go Mr. Thriftys Rootin Tootin Frugal Security System with doordbell
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.
I want ideas on what to do with different kinds of keys? Thanks.
By Sue from IL
Make a card that says you hold the key to my heart, and glue it on the card.
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
I teach kindergarten and would love to make these for my students. My address is PO Box 58 Barrackville WV 26559 if anyone has any donations!
Thanks, Kindergarten Connie
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.
For Valentine's Day, I hung a small lock and key set on a long ribbon, adding a red plastic "jewel" heart - for a specially romantic pendant.
By Pam M. from L.A., CA
Editor's Note: Be cautious around children with antique locks and keys. They are often made of lead.