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Crafts Using Sea Shells

Category Nature
This natural material comes in many shapes and sizes and can be a part of some interesting projects. This guide is about crafts using sea shells.


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By 5 found this helpful
June 8, 2010

This was one of the most fun and memorable things we ever did on a beach vacation with the kids. Sandycast faces made with sea shells.

Comb the beach for great sea shells, broken ones can be cool. Collect shells in a used onion bag, it makes it easier to wash off the sand before you use them or take them home.

Bring some plaster of Paris and an old beach pail and something sturdy to mix it with. Make a shallow, face shaped hole in the sand on the beach. Chose the shells you want to use for eyes, nose, mouth, etc. Keep the shells faced up to see the effect of how they will look when completed.

Reverse the shells and pour the plaster of Paris into the shallow hole. Carve your initials and year on the back. Give it enough time to set before you uncast it. Do not brush too much sand off of the sandycast.

Everyone will love them! They can be displayed on a plate stand because no one will want to put them away too soon. Have fun making memories, kids!

Source: Family Fun Magazine, many moons ago.

By Mother Goose from Royalston, MA

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By 1 found this helpful
August 20, 2009

We had a lot of left over little seashells we gathered at the beach. This craft uses up some of those shells for a cute keepsake for all of those wonderful beach memories!




  1. Cut the long edge of the blue paper to look wavy and resemble waves.
  2. Lay the blue paper to overlap the tan paper and tape together at the back side. Turn over and use a glue stick to stick together the front sides.
  3. Cut out a sun using the yellow and orange paper. Cut one of the beach photos in a circle to place in the middle of the sun. Glue or tape all pieces of the sun together onto the blue paper.
  4. I added another beach photo on the blue paper for fun. You could add fish, waves, boats, birds, or whatever you wish to add.
  5. Using the marker, write the name of the beach and the date at the top of the blue paper.
  6. Use regular glue to place seashells all over the tan "sandy beach" paper.
  7. Allow to dry and hang to enjoy!
  8. By Jayme from Harrisonburg, VA

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By 1 found this helpful
July 28, 2008

You could do a lot of different things to make this craft your own. Make a 3-D thank you note, make a journal entry about a vacation or the beach, or just make it decorative. Use seashells and other items you may see along the seaside.


Approximate Time: 30-45 minutes



  1. Cut a piece of foam board to desired size.
  2. Add a note or a journal entry in the middle (optional). A good journal entry could be about a specific vacation or just about the seaside in general. You don't have to add anything if the craft will just be decorative.
  3. Glue or tape the message to the board if it is a computer print out, or write the message in pen if desired.
  4. Glue seashells around the board using white glue. Could also add sea weed, sand, etc.
  5. Use hot glue to attach rope around the edges of the foam board. Cut at a diagonal to fit, or leave loose ends to tie in a knot. I reinforced the cut ends with hot glue.

Enjoy the memories!

By Jayme from Harrisonburg, VA

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Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.

By 1 found this helpful
January 31, 2007

My 5 year old son picked up a ton of seashells while we were at the coast this past summer and I need Ideas of how to use the sea shells in a crafts. I've decorated a picture frame but there are bunch more and he enjoys crafting. Any ideas?


Christy from El Paso, Texas


By Linda (Guest Post)
February 2, 20070 found this helpful

How about gluing them on flower pots for planters, onto a bulletin board frame, drill some holes and string them and make a wind chime (add some driftwood pieces to this if you have them,) Glue onto a soap dispenser for an ocean theme bathroom.

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February 3, 20070 found this helpful

here are so many things you can do but a couple are as follows:
Glue them around a peice of plastic or plexi-glass that is the size of a large candle you like to use to make a candle ring.
You can glue them around a mirror the size needed to make a perfume or makeup tray.
Glue them around a flower pot to make it decorative.
I hope this gives you some ideas to go from.
Have fun.

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February 3, 20070 found this helpful

What i did with my shells was i made a wind chime to hang outside & my sister made a wreath out of them.

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By Beth (Guest Post)
February 3, 20070 found this helpful

I have some beautiful sea shells displayed:
Filled a large urn from the garden store w/sand.


Placed the shells on the sand and covered w/a
large clear glass top from the hobbie store. Makes a
really cute "table". This one is sitting on our

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February 3, 20070 found this helpful

I once made a necklace out of bean clams and one scallop. The scallop was the pendant. Most of the shells already had a hole drilled in the right place, and those that didn't have one, I used a hammer, small nail, and positioned the shell on a piece of 2'x4' to poke the hole. I made it about 30 years ago, and I was getting compliments on it up until a few months ago when I dropped it and my husband stepped on it. I just strung shells on white crochet cotton and started crocheting. Every so often I crocheted a stitch over a shell to hold it where I wanted it, then crocheted a little more. I tied it at the back of the neck with a bow, but it was long enough to slip over my head. Wish I had some more of those cute little bean clam shells! You could also string beads inbetween the shells and then you wouldn't have to crochet. The beads would hold the shells in place.

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By Eletha (Guest Post)
February 4, 20070 found this helpful

I bought a white 1" dia. rope at the hardware store and i tacked it around the mirror in my bathroom. Then hot glued the shells on it. I had a lot more shells, so bought more rope and put it in the shower on the top of the tile ledge and around the window in the shower and repeated the procedure.


I taped the ends of the rope while working on it and then tied fishing line around the end and frayed the ends.

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February 8, 20070 found this helpful

I LOVE IT !!!!!!!!!!

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February 8, 20070 found this helpful

Well thank you very much :-) ... in the future I hope to expand the site with more craft ideas using shells, but one thing for sure... The Shell People are just plain FUN !!!

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By Gary (Guest Post)
March 1, 20070 found this helpful

Does anyone have some suggestions on how to drill small holes in seashells? I need a hole just large enough to allow some monofilament line to pass through it. Thanks

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By Beth (Guest Post)
April 30, 20070 found this helpful

Several postings here have spoken about drilling holes in the shells for jewelry, etc. When I try, I often end up crushing the shell or breaking the drill bit. Any tips for drilling through stubborn or delicate shells?

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By Amanda (Guest Post)
May 24, 20070 found this helpful

If you want something fun and easy to do with small shells you can make candles. Buy cheap pillar candles, I liked the white. Use the tip of your hot glue gun to melt a spot on the candle and press a shell into the wax. You just have to hold it until the wax starts to set. If you do the bottom half of the candle this way and then tie a piece of raffia ribbon around the center it makes for a nice accent piece in a bathroom or anywhere.

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By Emma (Guest Post)
August 9, 20070 found this helpful

I saw some really amazing shell craft in the gallery of see what you think.

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By Unis (Guest Post)
August 13, 20080 found this helpful

Could someone give me advise on how to clean delicate mother of pearl sea shells. They are very thin and colorful. A tip on how to bring and maintain them looking shiny. I am afraid that the bleach might destroy them completely. They are so beautiful that I don't want to risk not even one. Any tips would be appreciated. By Unis

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By jessi (Guest Post)
October 29, 20080 found this helpful

I found using a dremil on low and slowly drilling the hole releasing pressure off and on helps with less breakage. This way you don't break through the end so quickly. Also drill the inside so the arch is flat. Hope this helps.

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By m (Guest Post)
December 21, 20080 found this helpful

When we go to the beach we always have TONS of shells we bring back and we have no idea of what to do with them. So finally we came up with the idea of putting them on inexpensive frames to "dress them up a bit". They are really cute and fun.
Materials needed are: hot glue gun, (and glue for it of course), a simple picture frame, and plenty of sea shells. Then you go at it with your own creative touch.

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By Aina (Guest Post)
February 17, 20090 found this helpful

I would like to share with all beader friends about making of Sea Shell Jewelry that I posted at my blog. Have fun!

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Read More Answers

January 19, 20173 found this helpful

Sea shells can be used in so many craft projects. This is a guide about how to make a sea shell wreath.

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November 11, 20163 found this helpful

This is a guide about making a seashell picture frame. Use your seashell collection to create a beautiful picture frame.

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March 23, 20172 found this helpful

By mounting shells individually or in groups you can make some lovely plaques to show off your collection or to enhance your beach decor. This is a guide about making a shell plaque.

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October 31, 20162 found this helpful

This is a guide about using the right glue for seashell crafts. Certain types of glue work best when working on projects involving gluing shells to other objects.

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May 14, 20132 found this helpful

This is a guide about making birds out of seashells. Because of their unique shapes, textures, and colors seashells have many craft uses, including using them to create decorations in the shape of birds.

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July 15, 20190 found this helpful

Scallop and pistachio shells lend themselves to a variety of fun craft projects. Learn how to make a tropical fish from shells, on this page.

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June 19, 20190 found this helpful

You can make a cute bunny from scallop and mussel shells with your glue gun and acrylic paints to draw the face.

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January 20, 20170 found this helpful

There are several products that will allow you to put a silver colored edge on shells for craft projects and decorative items. This is a guide about putting silver edging on a seashell.

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July 23, 20140 found this helpful

This is a guide about making a seashell mirror. Use that shell collection that has been collecting dust on the closet shelf to create a beautiful mirror to complement your decor.

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February 7, 20140 found this helpful

Sea shells are used in many craft projects including the creating of lovely shell flowers. This is a guide about how to make a seashell rose.

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January 17, 20130 found this helpful

This is a guide about decorating with sea shells. Whether you are a collector or simply like to buy pretty unique shells at coastal shops, you can incorporate them into many lovely craft projects.

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January 31, 20070 found this helpful
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