How to Make a DIY Mermaid Crown with Seashells

How to make a seashell crown or DIY mermaid tiara
If you have dreams of being a mer-princess, this beautiful mermaid crown is for you! Every mermaid princess needs a spectacular seashell crown to top their long flowing hair. This DIY headpiece isn't hard to make and will be sure to impress whether you are partying at a festival or trick or treating for Halloween.

I originally designed this mermaid crown to be part of little girl's mermaid Halloween costume (full mermaid costume tutorial here) but it is definitely sophisticated enough for the adult mermaid as pictured. 

If you use my tutorial to create your own mermaid crown, let me know! Share a picture in the Creative Green Living Tribe or tag me on Instagram.

How to make a DIY crown or tiara

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Get the full list of 18 ways to make a crown or tiara here >> 18 Ways to Make a DIY Crown or Tiara

How to Make a DIY Mermaid Crown with Seashells


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DIY mermaid crown step 1: Paint the seashells

Protect your surface and go to town painting the seashells. I used a combination of pearl, metallic and glitter paints from Martha Stewart's paint line. I love this stuff! It sticks to everything and doesn't need primer. Plus the colors are to die for. Light gold was probably my fave (and I don't even like gold!)
how to make a seashell crown
how to make a mermaid crown

DIY mermaid crown step 2: Prep the tiara

While the shells are drying, get the tiara ready. I removed the fuzzy bit on the front and the large gemstone from the tip and then I wrapped the whole thing in silver chenille stems. (I got this great idea from Debbi's Design Diaries when she made her ultra lux mermaid crown. Be sure to take a peak at hers - it's awesome!)
DIY mermaid tiara tutorial

DIY mermaid crown step 3: Glitter

Hopefully the paint on your shells is dry by now (if not, wait until they are - you can use a hair dryer to help them along if needed). I decided to add glitter accents two ways. The first was to paint a line of the Glitter Finish Martha Stewart Decoupage on the edge of some of the clam shells then dip them in a small pile of silver glitter.
DIY seashell crown for a mermaid tutorial
The second way was to coat the starfish and several of the shells in the decoupage medium. I love how it gave a subtle rainbow glimmer to the shells. It also sealed them and made them waterproof. Which is perfect in case our mermaid gets caught in the rain!
How to make a seashell crown with a starfish
Set these aside to dry completely before moving on to step 4.

DIY mermaid crown step 4: Assemble the mermaid crown

Use the hot glue to attach the shells to the crown. Because the starfish was my focal point on the front of the crown, I adhered that first. Next, I did the matching spike shells radiating out from the top. Then I added the clamshells along the bottom. I totally have a thing for symmetry so that's what I focused on...feel free to be way less neurotic than I am!
How to make a seashell crown and mermaid tiara
How to Make a Mermaid Seashell Crown

DIY mermaid crown step 5: Wear it!

Once your mermaid crown is assembled you merely need to wait for the glue to set and you are good to go! Be sure to get the combs really worked into your hair when you wear it to avoid having it fall off your head.
Make your own seashell crown for a mermaid princess
How to make a seashell mermaid crown - perfect for Halloween, wedding or cosplay

PS - If you want to see the full mermaid costume tutorial, check it out here.

Carissa Bonham

About the Author:

Carissa Bonham is a lifelong crafter and mom of two creative boys. The owner and lead writer at Creative Green Living, she won the Craftys Award for the "Best Craft Blogger" category in 2016 and the ShiftCon award for "Best DIY Blogger" in 2018.

Her goal is to empower families to make easy projects and healthier choices that are beautiful and delicious! She is also the author of the hardcover cookbook, Beautiful Smoothie Bowls (Skyhorse, 2017) and Proven Techniques for Keeping Healthy Chickens (Skyhorse, 2018). 

Her projects have been featured in magazines like Kids Crafts 1-2-3, Capper's Farmer and Urban Farm Magazine. Follow her on PinterestInstagramTwitter or join the Creative Green Living Tribe.
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  1. I love your tutorial on mermaid tiara's! I'm inviting a few of my friends over to commiserate and make tiara's! Full credit going to you, Thank you!

    1. That sounds like fun! Please share pics on social media when you are done. I'd love to see them!

  2. I was wondering about the water proofing -- I have assembled a crown that I am very proud of I use E6000 glue, now I am thinking to put the decoupage medium over the whole thing for waterproofing. 22 year old daughter will want in water photographs of her costume!

    1. Most decoupage formulas are water soluble but Martha Stewart Decoupage Medium and Mod Podge Dishwasher Safe Formula are dishwasher safe after a 30 day curing period.

      If you don't have 30 days, you could use a waterproof acrylic sealer (usually in an aerosol can)--it's not a terribly green option but it will be more waterproof than regular decoupage.

  3. I love how you used the glitter paint! I made a mermaid bra this past Halloween - I wish I'd thought to paint the shells!

  4. Thanks for the idea!! My Mom and I are headed to a play of the Little Mermaid and I thought we needed to rock some mermaid crowns.


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