Making wind chimes is one of my favourite things to do, and I’ve made quite a few over the years. Pretty much anything looks like a wind chime candidate to me, so I knew exactly what I wanted to make for our August Thrifty Chicks Challenge… a license plate wind chime.
I had everything else together just waiting for me to find an actual license plate… and with not much time to spare I finally found one at our local flea market. It was a little pricey at $5, but thrifters can’t be choosers… especially when you’re a little desperate.
On the second Wednesday of each month I join some very talented blogging friends for a project challenge, and with a different theme each time it’s really a lot of fun.
Last month’s challenge was kitchen items, and if you missed it you can still check out my Repurposed Folding Strainer Flowers.
You can find all the past Thrifty Chicks project challenges here.
I can’t wait to see what my blogging friends have come up with for this month’s license plate project. There are links to all their fabulous projects at the end of this post so be sure to check them out.
How to Make a License Plate Wind Chime
Once I found my vintage March 1969 license plate I gathered the other things that I needed… a thrifted necklace, a large split ring (and some small ones that didn’t make it into the pic), and some pliers.
And for the chimes, well, when I think of license plates of course I think of driving.
When I think of driving I think of travelling the open road on long and winding road trips, which John and I love.
When I think of road trips I think of memories and souvenirs.
So when I decided to make this license plate wind chime I naturally thought of my collection of souvenir spoons.
The first thing you need to do is mark where you want to drill holes on the back of the plate. This is where your spoon chimes will hang.
Putting the holes in the indented area along the bottom of the plate makes it quite easy to drill into.
Souvenir spoons are small so I chose to space mine 3/4″ apart.
I drilled the holes using a 3/64″ metal drill bit.
Always wear eye protection when drilling into metal for protection from the little metal shards, and you may have to file down the edges of the holes to make them smooth. I just run my pliers tip against the edges and that works just fine.
Here’s my $1 thrifted necklace.
I took it apart with my pliers, and was left with 20 chains for my chimes.
The other bits will go into my stashes for possible use in the future.
How to Hang Spoons on a License Plate Wind Chime
For hanging the chimes I pushed some 3/8″ split rings through the holes in the plate.
I thought about bending my plate into a circle or a triangle, but since I only had one I didn’t want to risk ruining it.
So I’m using it just the way it is. I kinda like seeing the whole thing at once.
The I added my chains to the split rings. The chains were different lengths so I went with a random pattern to add some interest.
When I make wind chimes I love to repurpose thrifted necklaces , but you could use fishing line or jewelry wire if you prefer.
At this point I went into my collection of souvenir spoons and found ones that I wanted to use.
I bought this lot of over 100 spoons for $5 quite a while ago hoping that I would have a use for them some day.
A few of the spoons came with holes which made them ready to hang, but most needed drilling.
Usually I use silver plate spoons for my wind chimes because they’re easier to drill into than stainless steel, but these small spoons were thinner than normal stainless cutlery.
I used a 1/16″ metal drill bit, and it worked perfectly.
When I was looking through the box I chose spoons from places that we’ve been like BC, Calgary, Montreal, New Brunswick, PEI, Newfoundland, Maine, Pennsylvania, Florida, Las Vegas just to name a few. Considering I thrifted this lot of spoons I’m pretty happy with how many were from places we’ve actually visited.
I used the rings that came on the ends of the chain parts to hang the spoons.
Enjoying my License Plate Wind Chime
And now this project has a license to chime. 🙂
I drilled a couple of holes along the top, joined the leftover pieces of chains with my pliers, and used a few more split rings for hanging the whole chime.
Since Ontario, Canada, is my home I was happy to use this as my home plate.
When I saw that the license plate number started with a T… for Tuula, I knew it was the one for me. Never mind that it’s the only one I found. lol.
I usually put a vintage chandelier crystal at the top of all my wind chimes, but this time I decided to do something different.
I was born and raised in Toronto, Ontario so I put this spoon at the top along with an Ontario Science Centre spoon (where I went several times as a child), and a Niagara Falls spoon ( which you can’t really see on the left there).
John and I lived in Niagara-on-the-Lake for almost 6 years in another life, and we visited the nearby Falls several times.
I think I’m going to collect some souvenir spoons when we take our next road trip. Then I’ll make another license plate wind chime filled with memories of that particular trip.
That sounds like fun to me.
The sound of these souvenir spoons tinkling in the summer breeze is so pretty and peaceful. Perfect for a relaxing break outside at the end of a busy day, and I love that the spoons bring back some memories from places that we’ve been.
Wind chimes are so much fun to make out of so many different things like a silver sugar bowl, a strainer, or a grater just to mention a few. Basically, If you can hang stuff from it you can probably make it into a wind chime.
If you have some souvenir spoons displayed in one of those little wall shelf units, this might be a fun alternative way for you to enjoy them.
Remember to pin this to your favorite Pinterest Board!
Now be sure to check out what my friends did with their license plate projects.
Here are the befores.
Just click on the links beside the blog names to see the fabulous afters.
1 Shoppe No. 5 – How to Make a Welcome Sign from a License Plate
2. Adirondack Girl at Heart – Vintage License Plate DIY for the Man Cave
3. Lora B. Create & Ponder – License Plate Trug How-To
4. The Interior Frugalista – License Plate Art for Child’s Room
5. Little Vintage Cottage – License Plate Yard Art
6. Thrifty Rebel Vintage – That’s mine.
Thanks so much for reading, and until next time…
keep on keepin’ on!