This idea is stolen (out right!) from Colette, a member of my LICKnit group—you can also find Colette on Ravelry as KnitWitch.
I LOVED it..
Don't you just love shawl pins? And don't you just hate the price of them?
Well, find those cracked, broken, bent orphan bamboo needles—you know the ones—they are so expensive, you hate to discard, but after sitting on them or knitting when upset, you managed to, if not out right break them in half, ruin them for knitting—and turn then into shawl pins.
Don't have any broken bamboo DPN's (or straights) sitting around?—go buy some!
Even if you went out and bought
--a set of 5 DPN's (clovers say!)........$9.00
2 or 3 Tubes of craft paint..................$4.00
Buttons (in a bag, or fancy ones).......$10.00
Total......................................................$23.00—(let's round that up to $24.00)
(It could be more, --or frequently, LESS depending on sales/discount coupons, and your choice of buttons.)
This will make 6 short (3.5 inch ) and 2 long (6 inch) shawl pins.. or 8 pins total –at about $3 or less—per shawl pin.. If you have some broken DPN's, it could be less—you could just recycle the broken bamboo's.
And you'll still have lots of paint, (and perhaps lots of buttons!) left over for other crafts.
I used black, metallic gold and metallic silver paint--but other solid colors, and pearlized or other fancy paints could be used –the choice depends on your taste, your buttons, your shawls...(and maybe the colors of craft paint you already have on hand from some other project!)
1--Paint the needle (I used DPN's, but a broken straight needle would work too!)with the solid base coat.
I just stuck the needle into the paint, and then smeared of the excess with a paper towel--don't try for even coverage-- just cover most of the needle with base coat.
2--Then repeat with 2nd coat-- again, smear the paint, covering most but not all of the base coat—this time use metallic, pearlized or other fancy paint.
3--Find a shanked button (actually you should check and see which size needle best fits the shank, before you paint!) for the decorative part of the pin.
4--Cut the needle to size (in half, or longer) what ever works for you. If it was broken, trim the broken end to a neat blunt end.
5--Stick the painted needle into the shank, add a drop of glue –or easier, use a drop of craft paint as a glue.
Viola! A beautiful shawl pin—for if not pennies, a reasonable price.
They make great hat pins too!
The bamboo needles have a sharp enough/dull enough point to use on your knitting, The smeared paint is smooth enough/textured enough to slid through knitting, and not slip out.