The Best 28 Unique Clothespin DIY Ideas (Newly Created!)


I love stuff made of wood and when I can upcycle something made from it into something cool  I’m all over it. Clothespins are also a bit retro which I like as well. I’ve been collecting ideas for a long time on stuff you can do with them, mostly for adults and mostly useful things as apposed to only decorative. I finally decided to compile all the best ideas in one post showing how I used them. All these items are freshly made by me.

Most of the ideas are self-explanatory. You can just look at the picture and see how to make them. I give details when needed above each photo or if anything special was needed to make the item. Below is a list of general items I used. I tend to use what I have lying around.  Feel free to share any photos of things you make with them in the comment section!


General Info and Tools

Here are some of the general things I used depending on the items made. Just use what you have! More details are above each photo if needed.

  • Nice quality wood clothespins. Spring type and non spring type.
  • Paint, Rit Dye, or Food Coloring
  • Quart glass jars for dying
  • Colorful paper and Mod Podge
  • Felt
  • Washi Tape
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Wood glue for firmer hold
  • Fake flowers
  • Glitter
  • Gems, old jewelry or other small decorative things to glue on
  • Magnet sheets  (Need to be strong)
  • Mini magnets
  • Command strips for mounting


Dying Clothespins

I colored my clothespins in a variety of ways. Some I left plain, some I hand painted, some I spray painted and some I Mod Podged paper on. Dying is the nicest looking way to color them in my opinion. I tried regular food coloring and then Rit Dye. Regular food coloring gives more of a stained looked. Rit Dye gives a much deeper color.



Food coloring or Rit Dye each give a unique look depending on what you are after.


blank After soaking, drain, rinse well and lay to dry on paper towels. FYI: Never used dyed clothespins to actually hang wet clothes. The dye will come off on them!



You can take the clothespins apart and paint if desired. I found that tedious and struggled to get them back together so I just pained over everything. I pained the tops and sides and let it dry then I opened it up and painted under the part that clamps together. I then stuck a toothpick in so it would dry and the paint would not stick together.



Making Them Stick

For use on the fridge magnets work great and you can then move them around. Cutable sheet magnets with sticky backs are good but they tend to be weak so try to get stronger ones. The mini ultra magnets you see are awesome!  If you want to attach them someplace semi-permanently use Command Mounting Strips. They are very strong but can be removed when needed. These are great for cupboards such as holding a recipe which is how I use mine.





If you’ve ever used Command strips you know of their awesomeness. They are the BEST when you need a strong hold that won’t mar your surface when removed. (These are not meant for reuse.)  I use these for holding hooks in places I want them to stay for a long time. I also use one to hold a decorated clothespin on my cupboard that I use to hold my recipes as I make them as you’ll see below.  When you do want to finally remove them they come off clean!



1. Photo Holder Display

 This is one of two ideas that are mainly decorative. I glued clothespins onto wooden shish-kabob skewers I had, had them hold photos and then added them into a vase with flowers. You could of course paint them if you wished. I liked the plain wood in this case. clothespin.ideas-2


clothespin.ideas-3blank2. Necklace Holder

This is an inexpensive wood plaque I had leftover from my Bell Jar project.  They come in all sizes. I spray painted these clothespins and blued them on then added some jewels I’d saved from a broken bracelet.  Attach a picture hanger on the back and hang on the wall.  You can use this idea on a 1″ x 2″ long piece of wood also. Just cut it the length you want.





3. Clothespin Spring Necklaces

These are so easy to make! Just remove the springs and attach beads a shown. Add a chance and your stylin’!



 4. Plant Pot Labels

And no, that’s not really basil. Ü

clothespin.ideas-8 blank

5. Place Setting Name

I printed the name tag using my printer and cardstock. I tied the button I had on with raffia. The clothespin was hand painted gold.  I took this one apart to paint but it was a little difficult getting it back together so I painted over everything including the spring from this point on. I’m lazy… what can I say.


6. Note Holder and Line

This would make an awesome gift. I took an empty soup can (I used a safety can cutter t remove the lid.) and covered it with scrapbook paper. I printed the label to go on the front. These clothespins are dyed yellow with Rit Dye.  Fill it with a pen and some note paper. I added a string to attach on the wall for hanging notes or photos. You could also attach sticky magnet sheets on the back or glue a regular magnet for using the clothespins on the fridge.   I cut my birds out using my Silhouette Cutter but they are easily done by hand using scissors. I’ve included both types below as a free download.

{click HERE to download the FREE pdf of birds and label}
{click HERE to download the FREE Silhouette file of birds}clothespin.ideas-10




 7. Doll Charm

 I’ve seen these little peg dolls all over. Normally you have to buy the pegs but I realized that cutting off this type of clothespin works just as well and is cheaper! Just saw off right above the split.



 Sand the bottom a little and you’ve got the beginnings of a little person!



 I thought it would make a good key charm. I panted hair on and a shirt then cut some felt into leaf shapes and glued them on overlapping a little.  FYI A tutorial for the key ring thing is coming soon. Subscribed to get notified! clothespin.ideas-13


8. Decorative Clothespins On a Card

These also make nice gifts. You can put magnets on the back if desired. I covered a piece of cardboard with colorful paper to attache my clothespins too. These pins are dyed with Rid Dye and I added a little flower decorating on the end of each one.



Rit Dye really gives them a nice deep color.



9. Washi Tape Set

Washi tape is perfect for quickly decorating clothespins. I colored these with Rit Dye first.



10. Cord Organizing

Computer nerds have to deal with the problem of cord nests under their desks…  so many cords! This is a quick simple way to tell which cable goes to what! Write on the clothespin or even make labels to attach to them.



 11. Container Labeling

You can clip a clothespin onto the edge of containers or even glue them on the front to quickly hang a label.  I put glitter on this clothespin.



 12. Quick No Glue Holder

This was so easy and so awesome looking! I tool a tuna can and clipped dyed clothespins around the edge. No gluing needed, though you may want to glue some decor on the front like I did. These can be used to hold anything. I stuck a candle in mine. For my final container I used clothespins I dyed with blue food coloring and I love the stained look it gave them.




I tested my red clothespins first then decided to go with the light blue ones.






13. to 18.  Different Ways To Decorate Your Pins

This shows a variety of things I did to decorate my clothespins. The bugs and dragon ones would be great for displaying kids artwork on the fridge!  Regular magnets work best. FYI: I used small round extra strong magnets. They actually stuck to the metal spring on the bottom of the clothespin and I didn’t have to glue them  on!

 Ribbon :: Flowers :: Mod Podge Paper :: Caterpillar :: Dragon  :: Dragon Fly (separate photo below)





Of course I had to make a dragon. Here are the pieces I used.



I made this guy separate because he’s my favorite. I used some extra nylon screen I had for the wings. Each set of wings I cut as once piece.





19. Recipe Card Holder

I use this one almost daily. Its attached to my cupboards with a Command Strip and I stick my recipes in it while I cook.



20. Nail Holder : Save Your Fingers!

A clothespin works great to hold small nails for hammering into the wall to hang things. If you happen to miss you don’t hit your finger!




21. Earbud Holder

Two clothespins glued together make a holder to wrap your earbuds around that you can clip the ends into! I spray painted mine black and added some matching Washi Tape.








22. Painting Assistance

I use these all the time when painting small objects. It not only allows me to hold them while painting but also lets me paint both sides of things as seen with these keys. I can then set them or prop them on something while they dry.


23. String Holder

I use these to hold colored string in my craft room. You can clip the loose ends in!



 24. Picture Hanger Tool

This one is a huge help if you hang a lot of pictures as I do.   You place a nail into the clip end of a clothespin. You may need to drill a tiny hole to help keep the clothespin from splitting. This nail is for marking purposes only and it stays inserted.  Follow the simple steps below.



You then hook the nail into the back hanger of your picture.



Hold the picture up where you would like to hang it keeping your clothespin steady.



Carefully remove the picture while holding your clothespin steady. Taking a hammer gently tap the nail into the wall to leave a small marking hole where your picture nail will be inserted.  Set the clothespin aside and you now clearly see where to insert your nail to hang your photo exactly where you want it. clothespin.ideas-33


25. iPhone / Cell Phone Holder & Stand

This is so cool. Four clothespins make a quick stand for your cell phone.  I spray painted my clothespins first. These are not glued together… you clamp them together each time you want to use them. Clamp one on each side and then clamp the other two legs on the ends.




blank26. Beautiful Hand Fan

I did this as a separate previous post but it had to be included here also. I’ve linked to my tutorial on how to make this very pretty fan.  HAND FAN TUTORIAL




 27. Recipe Holder

I use a decorative clothespin attached to my cupboard with a Command Mounting Strip to hold recipes as I make them.



 27. Felt Bows With Tiny Clothespins

These use the very small clothespins that are about 2″ long. These are fun to clip onto gifts and other things!







28 New & Unique Clothespin Ideas!






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