multi-coloured beads, background from beads image by 26kot from

If you want to add some color and style to your dreadlocks without spending a lot on dreadlock jewelry, you can make your own in a few simple step. You'll need just a few tools that you can find at your local craft or hardware store. The possibilities for hair jewelry are endless and you can use your imagination to add on to the suggestions below, adding things such as colored beads, wooden beads or cowrie shells to your piece.


Draw a design of what you would like your jewelry to look like. Designing dreadlock jewelry is a series of trial and error. The jewelry you make has to be to fit your own personal tastes and dreadlock size. Although you can play around with various styles and shapes, it’s a good idea to have a rough idea of what you would like your jewelry to look like before you start constructing it.

Choose your color of wire and beads. Pliable 20-gauge wire can be found at craft stores in a variety of colors. If you choose to add colored beads to your jewelry, set them aside and come up with a desired color scheme before starting your project.

Form the body of the jewelry by wrapping the wire tightly around a round object such as a pen or fat marker, depending on the size of your dreadlocks. For small dreadlocks, use something skinny, such as a pen, and for thicker dreadlocks use a thick marker or crayon. The number of times you wrap the wire around the object will depend on how tall you would like your jewelry to be. If you want a long piece of jewelry measuring at least a few inches, you will need to wrap the wire around the object 25 to 50 times. For a small piece of jewelry, 10 to 25 times should work.

Leave 4 to 10 inches (depending on your design) of excess wire at each end and cut the wire with the wire cutters.

Using the round-nose pliers you can make simple or intricate designs with the excess wire on your piece. For a beautiful and simple piece, grip one end with the round-nose pliers and begin to the curl the end in a small and tight circle, creating a spiral. Keep adding to the spiral as you bring the end closer to the middle of the jewelry. When the spiral has come to the center of the jewelry, repeat this process with the other end of the jewelry. If you decide to not make a spiral design, you can simply curl each end of the loose wire underneath the body of the jewelry.

Slide the piece off the object, stick your dreadlock through the center and push the jewelry far enough up the dreadlock that it stays in place or sew the piece into your hair using a needle and thread if you would like to jewelry to be more permanent.


Add beads to your design at any step of this process. For example, add a bead when winding the wire around the round object or add a bead to the ends of the wire when creating a spiral shape.


Wear protective goggles when working with wire and wire cutters.

About the Author

Nicole Carlin

Nicole Carlin is a yoga and dance teacher and founder of POP Fizz Academy in Philadelphia. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Temple University and a Master of Arts in gender and sexuality, politics from Birkbeck University, London. Carlin has written about dance, crafts, travel and alternative health for eHow, and Demand Studios.