Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Hardware Store Hijinks!

Hihi, all!  Today my mom and I went to the hardware store because, well, that's where all the cool chicks hang out, right?  :)  Well, not really-- I needed sanding sponges for my studio and a new key made for the house.  Seriously though, I do love my local hardware store.

My local Hall's Ace Hardware is like an old fashioned general store.  There are gifts and trinkets, a kitchenware section, a nice tool section, and a huge garden center.  They also sell vintage style sodas and candies, old fashioned toys, etc.  They even have a "ladies' night" in December with live music, door prizes and 20% off anything in the store.  You get the idea.  It's nice.

I've been visiting this store for a while now--years!  Imagine my surprise when I realized today that they sell Para-cord.  I think that's what it's called-- it's for making those survival bracelets?  Oh, geez!  They had so many colors and styles and patterns and sizes!  Like, a whole section of the store was filled with cords!  I took pictures!  Why am I so excited?

Well, I have a penchant for pendants.  I make more pendants than anything else.  Some of the Para-cords looked awesome for simple ropes!  Ropes to hang my pendants!  And holy crow, I got 9 different (2 feet long) styles and colors for a whopping $1.80.  You heard right!  At my local Hall's store the Para-cord is .09/foot.  They also sell by the spool, by the package, they sell mini cord which is thinner, micro cord which could be braided (Kumihimo, anyone?) and well... I just think it's neat.  Take a look!  I apologize in advance for the blurred photos.  I was taking pics with my phone and the people in there thought I was just as crazy as a loon.

Who gets that excited over rope?  Me!  < .10/foot, y'all!  :)  Stick cord end caps over the ends, attach a clasp, and BAM!  You're ready to wear your necklace.  OR, how about stitching a rope around the cord?  or just embellishing sections of the cord?  or beading cord end caps?  or wire wrapping end caps?  or macrame an adjustable closure?  Or... you get the idea.

So many colors.

So many patterns!

Cool, huh??  I didn't even get the wall behind me, which held the micro Para-cord and the ropes.  I chose quite a few that were kinda- sorta neutral looking, since I didn't want too much noise clashing with my bead work.  Still, you could match virtually any pendant with these.  People who live in my home town are very lucky.  I told the man in the store to be prepared for an influx of little, blue-haired ladies because I was going to tell all my students about these cords.  I know, I live under a rock... I'm sure you all knew about these cords long ago.  I'm sometimes slow on the uptake.  But!!!  Now I know, so all my pendants will have homes.

These are the ones I chose.  Some are thicker than others.  How fun!

See?  Some of my pendants are very happy.  I'm very happy.

So there you have it!  A quick and easy option for necklace cording, something I've never thought about using before today.  It's an option!  I don't sell my jewelry, so I don't mind using inexpensive cord to hold my baubles.  I don't think I'd mind even if I did sell my jewelry!  Heck, you could use the cord as display props, too!

I'm telling my ladies about this, for sure.  :)  Sorry-- I get all giddy when I find something neat, even if others found them oh... 4 years or so ago?  That's how long the store said they've carried the cords.  I never went past the wooden shelves until today.  :sigh:  Gotta explore your stores!

Check out your hardware stores!  Check out your home centers!  You may find a mini trove of goodies!  Have a great day!  ~Val


  1. I love my ACE Hardware for all sorts of goodies.... Washers, D Rings, rope, chain, etc... I find something new every time a take a stroll.... I have learned to go without my family though so I can take my time and let things toss around in my head....

    1. I know what you mean! I like to take my time, and plus, they have a big $1 section with little bits and bobs like sandpaper, paintbrushes, etc.

  2. I want to come browse YOUR hardware store! It sounds wonderful. :) I haven't thought of para cord, either - and did NOT know they had mini or micro... hmmmm.... maybe I'll do a bit of online shopping... :D Love your choices - especially the purple!!

    1. It's truly a wonderful place. :) I get my copper tubing and pipe there. Sure, it may cost a little bit more than the big box stores, but it's pretty awesome to browse through and the people are friendly.

      Thanks! I wanted to truly go nuts in there, lol. I'm very lazy when it comes to beaded ropes--I lose interest after about 5 inches, no lie! :) Also, many of my pendants seem to fight with ropes for attention. There's something to be said for simple chains and pendant cords. Plus, I'm not a fan of the ribbons or those awful flocked tubing cords where the flocking rubs off onto your neck? lol! :D