Vintage charm braceletDo you know how Vintage Charm Bracelet Catches Work? I’ve been asked several times by customers how to open their bracelets.  These are the older type of bracelets where the charms hang down and are attached by an O ring.  Not the modern Pandora type where the charms slide along a chain. It is so difficult to explain to my customers in an email so I hope today’s blog helps.

Many of these look like little padlocks and even have a keyhole. Mostly though they do not have a key. It’s not that the keys are missing they were never actually supplied with the bracelets and the lock does not function in that way.  So just how do you open them?


Heres the trick, there is a little lever on the side. It’s so small that it often gets overlooked. You press the lever inwards. Please press in the direction shown in this picture. It does not pull outwards.

how to open charm bracelet catch


Now how to close again. Just press lightly down on the top and it clips back in place as shown here. This is usually quite easy but sometimes the catches are a little stiff.

close c


I have made a little video

I hope this shows more closely what I’m talking about. Sorry about how awful my hands look, its the really close up view that’s done it.


Now not all of these catches look the same, there might just be a little knob on the side to press in. It will most likely work just the same as these. Once in a while, you can find a catch with a real key. These are so very rare.  This one you simply place the key in the lock and turn – with great delicacy of course as its solid gold.

I hope my explanation of Vintage charm bracelet catches has helped. I have lots of charm bracelets for sale and a few individual catches available too over in my shop at .