Thursday, 24 June 2010

The things I buy...

Do you know what that is in the pic above? It's a dozen bolo slides -- a finding normally used when making bolo/bola ties (a country/western thing). I'm not planning on making anthing along those lines. This was a thing that just had to find it's way to my wishlist after reading the post Make your own big bracelet blanks by Dave over at the Rings & Things blog. The background for the post was that one of the R&T employees had a smart idea for how to make a bigger bracelet blank, as requested by a costumer. She found the bolo slides to be ideal for the purpose.

And of cause that sort of idea triggers my creativity. I began thinking about what other ways you could use this slightly unusual -- if you're not into the whole country & western thing -- finding. I got one idea just while reading the post and when I received the slides -- of cause I had to buy them in the end -- I had a new idea.

So, I know how to use the first two slides. That leaves ten more to come up with ideas for. I did hesitate to buy a package as I felt I didn't have enough ideas for a whole dozen, but I do think I'll get around to using them all. Good thing is they weren't too expensive either so can experiment freely without feeling like I'm wasting money.

I've been on a spending spree lately, I feel, and so the bolo slides weren't the only thing I bought just to try them out.

This is a new typ on "clip-on" earrings for me. I'm always trying different versions -- from screws to cuffs -- in search for less painful fake earrings than the horrible clip-ons I found as a kid. This version is very simple and with the right typ of wire (I'm thinking springy steel) you could probably do these yourself. Also they weren't too expensive, something that is often the problem with clip-ons as they have all sorts of springs and hinges to keep the earring on the earlobe.

I've already got a favourite type of clip-ons that are similar to these, but with a spring thingy, which makes them more expensive. Below is an example of what I've made with that type.

And, oh, I got some bezel lace too. Isn't it pretty?

Had only seen it in sterling before, which is beyond my budget, so I was thrilled to find it in my latest favourite metal, brass. Bezel lace is used for setting stones and the smart thing is that the loops make this type of gallery wire useful for wireworkers that doesn't solder as well. The top bezel is so pretty on its own I'll probably use it as a decorative trimming on a pendant or something too.


  1. Hi Kristina, as always a really interesting article with great pictures! I like your point that you can buy jewelry components at wholesale quantities/prices in order to afford some experimentation. Thanks for mentioning our blog -- it's wonderful to hear about someone being inspired to make stuff after reading what we wrote!

    :) Dave
    at Rings & Things

  2. Thanks, Dave :D

    Yes, by now I have (sort of) learnt that buying only one of anything is a sure what to curb inspiration as I end up not "daring" to use my new stuff as I feel:

    a) if I fail, I don't have a second chance. Sometimes one can rescue it, but other times you do something that can't be undone.

    b) I will inevitably have more than one idea for the piece so I end up doing nothing as I can't choose which of the ideas I should persue.

    c)If I use it, I don't have any left to use, thus I want to use it for the best project. So I save it for a special project. A project that never shows up as I keep thinking it's not the best project and I have to do something extra special with this one piece. This is especially common when buying expensive supplies where I can't afford more than one of each item.

    So thankfully some supplies are cheap enough for me to afford buying a quantity large enough to give me room to experiment freely. After all, with a dozen of bolo slides -- or other stuff -- I can afford to waste one or two. Because to do something that doesn't work our is an invaluable experience for finding the right solutions. So one must sometimes dare to make a sacrifice. Even if it feels like "throwing away money".

    Sometimes I have to be pushed into buying slightly larger quantities (by the fact an item isn't available to purchase by the piece), but in the end I'm glad when I do give in as I otherwise would probably have gotten all penny-wise. Maybe good for my bank account, but in the end something that hampers my creativity more than it saves me money...


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