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Charity jewellery made with recycled guitar strings

Probably no guitarist or bass guitarist keeps track of the strings he/she has broken since he/she started playing, but the truth is that each of those that has gone to waste, is a missed opportunity to give it a second life. There are numerous possibilities for this, but in today's article we will focus on jewellery. Turning guitar and bass strings into bracelets and rings has become a unique and creative way to recycle these elements in recent years. In addition to the benefits of recycling itself, there are currently a number of initiatives that also donate the money earned from the sale of these products to different charities.

Charity jewellery made with recycled guitar strings
Charity jewellery made with recycled guitar strings

One of the most popular is Wear Your Music, an NGO founded in 2007 based in Providence (United States) and launched by Hannah Garrison, a designer of jewellery with recycled materials. The former Allman Brothers guitarist Warren Haynes was the first famous musician to donate his strings, and decided to donate the proceeds from the sales to Headcount, a non-profit organisation that uses music to encourage participation in democracy and voter registration in the United States. It was the first of more than 100 charities to receive funds from Wear Your Music, which currently enjoys the collaboration of 150 artists, including Metallica, Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana and Avril Lavigne, and has already distributed more than half a million dollars.

From just under 20 euros for the cheapest bracelet, to the most expensive, more than 250 euros, Wear Your Music provides an opportunity to make an original gift to a musician or a fan. They are also sent in a DVD box that has been recycled. 

Another initiative, also by a non-profit organisation, is The Guitarwrist, in the United Kingdom. In this case, artists such as Iron Maiden, Coldplay and Noel Gallagher contribute their broken or disused strings to be turned into wristbands, bracelets, rings, necklaces and even earrings, all handmade by Emma Hedley Jewellery and Breakbeat Jewellery. The Guitarwrist, founded in 2017 has already raised about €115,000 for more than fifty charities chosen by the musicians themselves, preventing more than 9,000 strings from ending up in the rubbish bin.

Both The Guitarwrist and Wear your music are charitable organisations, but it is not difficult to find stores on the Internet that offer these recycled products, this is the case, also in the United States, of www.retunedjewelry.com founded in 2016 by a couple of music lovers, who, according to their website, intend to transmit through these creations "all the love, passion and hard work of which these strings have been an essential part". "Our jewellery breathes new life into the strings and keeps their stories alive," they point out.

We have not yet found similar initiatives in Spain, but hey, as it is about recycling and re-using, what could be better than 'do it yourself' like we have always done. To make a bracelet or ring from guitar or bass strings, simple tools such as a pair of pliers, a wire cutter, and some beads or other decorative accessories are all you need. The process usually involves cutting the string to the desired length, making a loop at each end to hold the fittings, and then adding the decorative accessories along the string. In any case, if there is one place you will always find help for this kind of thing, it is Youtube. Here is just one of the many tutorials that you can find to convert guitar and bass strings into rings and bracelets. Perhaps the final result is not as beautiful as those made by professionals, but, after all, you will have made it all by yourself, music lover.

Jewellery aside, here in Music Lover we are always in favour of recycling and re-using waste, so if you can think of any other way to recycle guitar or bass strings, and there has to be a way, we would appreciate it if you let us know about them in the comments of our social networks, we are on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

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