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DIY: How to Create Sparkling Rhinestone Pens with This Craft Tutorial"

Hand writing with a Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pen that has had rhinestones glued to the outside. Two more such pens are laying on the surface to the left.

One of the most versatile gifts to give to pretty much everyone - friends, teachers, as thank you gifts, birthday gifts or just anytime - are pens because we all use pens. And if you are going to be using one, it might as well be one that brings a smile to your face, right? If you (or someone you are making gifts for) loves sparkle, shine, glitter or bling, you are definitely going to want to learn how to make these pens because they will definitely put a smile on your face!

The process for making rhinestone pens is very simple and it doesn't even require much in the way of supplies. The end result is the most sparkly, fun pen I've ever had to pleasure to write with.

Come on, I'll show you how!

Supplies for rhinestone pens:



 Watch the video tutorial:

Prepare the pen for applying rhinestones:

Hands using a wire cutter to cut off the clip from the barrel of a Paper Mate InkJoy gel pen.

Unscrew the pen tip and dump out the inside components. There will be five pieces – the tip, the spring on the end of the ink, a plastic piece that fits inside the clicker, and a metallic looking piece which is the clicker itself.

Use a pair of wire cutters to cut off the clip. Position the wire cutters as close as possible to where the clip is attached to the barrel of the pen and squeeze. Be warned: the clip will most likely go shooting off to the other side of the room when you do this. I like to hold the pen inside a garbage can to catch the flying clip as I cut if off but even this doesn’t always ensure I won't have to track down a clip later.

Hands using a Cricut TrueControl knife to cut the logo off the barrel of a Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pen.

Use a Cricut TrueControl or X-ACTO blade to cut off any remaining plastic from the base of the clip, as well as the tiny dot of plastic that fits under the clip, and the Paper Mate logo on the back of the pen. Just shave these pieces off with your blade. It is helpful to brace the bottom of the pen against a surface in from of you. And make sure to cut away from yourself. We don’t want any emergency room visits!

Hands using sandpaper to sand the barrel of a Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pen.

Sand the barrel of the pen with sandpaper to rough up the rubber and the plastic. I know I’ve sanded enough when the lettering on the plastic has been removed and it doesn’t take very much sanding to reach that point. DO NOT try to sand away the small dots on the rubber. You just need to rough up the rubber so the glue will adhere better.

Use a coffee filter or paper towel and rubbing alcohol to wipe down the entire barrel of the pen to remove any debris and sanded plastic or rubber.

At this point, if the barrel of the pen does not match the color of rhinestones you will be applying, you could use a spray paint with primer in it to paint it. Once that dries you could continue with the next step. The pen I used matched the rhinestones pretty well and even when I use a black pen with different color rhinestones I personally like the look of the black behind the stones. But matching the color of the pen to the rhinestones will camouflage the pen more.

Applying rhinestones to the pen:

Hands using a syringe filled with glue to apply the glue to the top of the barrel of a Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pen.

Now it’s time to begin applying rhinestones. With glue in the syringe, apply a thin layer of glue at the bottom, flat area of the pen.

Hands using a wax stylus to apply rhinestones to the barrel of a Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pen.

Use the wax picker/stylus to pick up a rhinestone and place it just at the end of the pen. Continue applying rhinestones until you have completed that row.

Hands using a wax stylus to tap down rhinestones glued to the barrel of a Paper Mate InkJoy Gel Pen.

Once you have the very first row applied, set the bottom of the pen against a flat surface like a table and use the wax picker/stylus to gently tap the rhinestones down so they are flat against the table. It is important that this first row be straight and even because if it is not, every other row will also not be straight and even.

Wait about 10-15 minutes for the glue to begin drying. You don’t want to add the next row until this one is dryer because if adding more shifts the first row at all you won’t have the nice, straight foundation you need for the rest of the pen.

A hand drawing on lined paper depicting where to place rhinestones in a honeycomb pattern.

Add more glue and position the next row of rhinestones in a honeycomb pattern. Nestle each rhinestone between two of the rhinestones from the previous row (see the above illustration).

I like to add two rows of rhinestones at a time and let those dry for a few minutes. I work on two to three pens simultaneously so pen number one is drying while I work on pen number two and three and then I rotate.

Hands holding a pen with rhinestones glued to it.

Continue adding rows of rhinestones until you reach the top of the pen. As long as they don’t get in the way of the clicker going in and out of the pen barrel, you can add rhinestones all the way to the top of the rubber.

Let the glue dry for at least 24 hours.

Reassemble the rhinestone pen:

Now it’s time to reassemble all the pieces. From the bottom, flat end, drop in the metallic clicker, then the plastic piece that fits inside the clicker, next the ink with the spring on the end of the pen nib, and lastly screw back on the pen tip.

Don’t forget to test the clicker and make sure everything works smoothly. If you have any glue inside the barrel of the pen you can use the Cricut TrueControl blade to carefully scrape the glue out without disturbing any of the rhinestones.

A pen covered in rhinestones in a cellophane bag and another cellophane bag with a Pen Care Instruction Card sitting next to it.

Now your bling pen is ready to rock! If you are giving it away, you can print these free pen care cards to include with the pen (and maybe a pen refill) for a polished, professional look.

Happy crafting!

A sheet of Pen Care instructions to print and include with rhinestone pens.


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