Shopping In The Hardware Store for Jewelry Parts

Wednesday, July 23

Decided to go to Lowe’s yesterday to buy washers and rubber tubing. Saw the neatest jewelry in one of my books utilizing plain hardware parts. Washers in gold, silver and copper made into a necklace and a bracelet made with memory wire and black rubber tubing.

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Not being a tool kind of gal, I was thinking it would be easy to walk in, find what I wanted and walk out. Inside Lowe’s, lost in a sea of men, two other ladies looking as lost as I was…I went up and down several aisles. I spotted a person with a Lowe’s name tag and asked for help. Can you please steer me in the right direction. His response, while pointing straight ahead was, “See that man. Bent over? There you will find rubber tubing.”

I walk about half a mile, it seemed, and sure enough I see tubing. BUT tubing large enough to push through a small dog. Now, I know I told that guy I wanted it FOR CRAFT MAKING. Nope. Won’t be needing THAT much tubing. The tubing I want, maybe a family of ants could travel through it if a sugar cube was on the other end. Big Sigh. I gave up on the black tubing.

Next I searched for washers.

I don’t know about you but my last memory of seeing washers was at the corner hardware store where you could pick up a handful and toss them around in your palm. Like nickels. Those at Lowe’s were nicely packaged. BUT only saw two and for a nifty price. The packaging probably cost more than the washers. Nope. Not what I wanted. Not what I wanted to pay. So… like the other ladies I saw inside, wandering around, I spotted them in the parking lot, same as me… emptyhanded.

I left Lowe’s and walked two doors down to a place I was VERY familiar with. Michael’s Art and Crafts store.

No, I wasn’t expecting to find washers and rubber tubing in Michael’s. Didn’t know exactly what I was looking for but I had a 40% off coupon which was burning a hole in my purse. I bought these.

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I won’t be using them for earrings per the packaging suggestions. I am going to be different and make a bracelet. See… I have already connected them with jumprings and added a lobster claw clasp.

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Will sleep on it for a few days and see what direction my thoughts take.

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New Words For My Tool Vocabulary

Wednesday, July 23

How many of you have ever used a Pen Vice or Hemostat?

Looking around. Ok. One person. LOL!! Thought so.

If you are like me, clueless in the tool shed, not only have you never used them, you never even HEARD of them.

So… here’s the thing. (To coin a phrase from Adrian Monk.) I was sitting in class Sunday looking at the pile of tools covering the beading mat. And I mean covering it. There were several that looked the same, only difference being the tip. Round nose pliers, chain nose pliers, flat nose pliers, wire cutters. And a tape measure, polish cloth, file, scissors. Also included were tools used especially for ring making. A long metal ring mandrel, various plastic ring sizes on a chain, a rawhide mallet, a PEN VICE and a HEMOSTAT. Wow!! I had seen them all except the last two. No clue what they were or would be used for. After class, I decided to purchase these two and add them to my collection.

The Pen Vice is used to twist wire. It is pretty cool WHEN the wire is inserted into the right spot. The only thing moving on my first attempt was my wrist. LOL!! Did you know round wire will not twist?

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A hemostat is like a very long pair of scissors that clamps down tightly on an object. When making rings, it holds the shank in place so you do not have to worry about it shifting.

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I will probably use the hemostat a lot. It will come in handy to hold wire when wirewrapping. Not sure how much use I will get out of the pen vice but it was cute, all nice and shiny. 😀