At my barn, I share one big tack room with a whole lot of other riders. Sometimes items get picked up, swapped, moved around and lost. The easiest way I’ve found to solve that is by using bridle tags or charms. Engraved bridle tags will run you about $10 each. Pretty bridle charms can run even more. Here’s an easy and inexpensive way to make your own. At around $5 each for supplies, you can make a ton of these charms for your various tack items. Don’t limit yourself to just bridles. Breast plates, saddles, halters, leads, or anything with a ring or buckle to attach the lobster clasp will work. It’s a great way to identify all of your tack quickly and within a budget.
Step 1. Purchase supplies (I already owned the tools, but they are a good investment for less than $20 for both). The pins, clasps, beads and charms ran me just over $20 with tax without any coupons and with nothing on sale. I was able to make 3 charms (sadly they only had 3 “R” charms so I had to stop at 3 until they get more in stock). If more were in stock, I could have made 5 charms for $25 which makes them $5 each.
– Round Tipped Pliers
– Wire Cutters
– Needle Nose Pliers (optional, but makes it easier)
– Eye Pins
– Larger Lobster Clasps
– Assorted Beads and Charms of your choice
Step 2. Use round tipped pliers to manipulate eye pins to open loop to attach charm. Slide charm on open loop. Use needle nose pliers or round tipped pliers to close the loop.
Step 3. Slide bead or beads on eye pin through the open end. Bend eye pin to lock bead(s) in place.
Step 4. Bend the eye pin with round tipped pliers to make a loop (similar to the other end of the eye pin) to finish off this part. Trim off excess wire with wire cutters.
Step 5. Use second eye pin. Open loop with round tipped pliers. Trim excess wire off loop (or buy circle link jewelry supplies – would be easier but cost more).
Step 6. Attach closed beaded eye pin to lobster clasp using wire loop just created by Step 5 (or store bought loop).
Repeat as many times as you’d like until you have the number of charms you need to identify all of your tack.
Easy enough right? Now you can create your own custom bridle charms for a low price per charm. Enjoy!