8 DIY Picture Charms for Bracelets & Necklaces

Updated July 26, 2019

Show Your Love With Photo Charms


Photo charm bracelets and necklaces make a meaningful gift or personalized style statement. Whether you're planning to make the charms yourself or buy picture charms from a retailer, this is a great way to show off your favorite photos in style.

Use simple disc-shaped photo charms, which you can order from retailers like Shutterfly for about $20. If you add other fun charms and tie them together with colored floss, friendship bracelet-style, you can make a beautiful, one-of-a-kind gift for a friend.

Make a Simple Picture Charm


Making your own picture charm is easy. You'll need a flat disc for jewelery making, available at any craft store, a photo of the appropriate size printed on regular paper, some decoupage medium, and a pair of scissors. Here's how to do it:

  1. Start by cutting the photo to fit the blank charm. You can do this by tracing around it.
  2. Lightly apply decoupage medium to the top of the charm. Press the photo in place, smoothing out any air bubbles.
  3. After the photo has dried, apply more decoupage medium over the photo to protect it. You may need two or three coats.
  4. Allow the picture charm to dry and then add it to a bracelet or necklace.

DIY Photo Charm Dog Tags


Use the same decoupage process to make photo charms out of dog tags. You can buy blank dog tags in the jewelry-making section of any craft store or bead shop. Create a layered photo necklace, like a memory scrapbook you can wear, by making a string of dog tags with important photos. This makes a great gift for older family members.

How to Make Photo Charm Beads


Use a flat glass bead to make a photo charm that has dimension. It's easy to find these flat beads in the flower section at your craft store, and they come in round, square, and even heart shapes. To make the bead into a charm, you'll need epoxy from any craft store and a jewelry bail. Here's how to do it:

  1. Cut the photo to be the same size as the flat back of the bead.
  2. Mix the epoxy according to the directions on the package.
  3. Apply the epoxy to the front of the photo. Press the photo onto the back of the bead so you can see the image through the glass. Smooth out any bubbles.
  4. Use more epoxy to add a jewelry bail.
  5. Let everything dry before you add the charm to a necklace or bracelet.

Add Photo Charms to Bead Bracelets


Bead charm bracelets are a popular option, but it can be challenging to figure out how to add a picture charm to this style of bracelet. You can buy a bead with a flat dangly charm and simply use the decoupage technique to add a photo to it.

Have a Photo Laser Engraved on a Charm


You can order precious metal charms with picture engraved on them. Retailers like Pictures on Gold specialize in this type of picture charm for bracelets and necklaces. You can use any photo, and the precious metal charms start at about $40. This is a great way to display a really special image, such as a wedding photo.

Layer Picture Charms With Meaningful Symbols


You can create a truly special charm necklace by layering simple picture charms with other charms that symbolize hobbies and interests. This is a perfect option for a photo-enthusiast, since you can layer photos with camera charms.

Don't Limit the Shape of Picture Charms


You can make picture charms in any fun shape; you don't have to limit yourself to round or square. Use any flat charm base to decoupage a photo. If you layer it with similarly shaped charms, it can help you create a sophisticated, cohesive charm bracelet or necklace where it's all about the photos and textures.

Jump Ring Flat Picture Charms


If you love making your own jewelry, you can turn any flat item into a picture charm with the addition of a jump ring. Simple decoupage the picture onto the flat base, drill a hole, and add a jump ring. This lets you attach the charm to your favorite charm bracelet.

Layer Charm Jewelry


Whether you make or buy a picture charm bracelet or necklace, you can layer your jewelry for more dimension and meaning. These charms are a great way to show off what's important to you, and you can swap them out according to your mood or outfit.

8 DIY Picture Charms for Bracelets & Necklaces