This is what happens when my weekend plans get messed up and I’m forced to stay home with nothing specific to do. I start playing with random materials to see what I can come up with. I love using materials for something other than their intended purpose. This necklace is comprised entirely of “stuff” more at home in the hardware shop. But I find the contrast between the metals and rubber really pleasing….
The metal elements of this necklace come from a mixed bag of tubing offcuts I randomly came across on Ebay a few months back. I was looking for something else entirely when I came across this bag of offcuts. I THINK they are used in precision engineering and things like model steam engines/trains etc. But in any case they looked mighty puuuuurty to me! So I bought them thinking I’d have a play and see what happened. The rubber cord is a length of this Nitrile O Ring cord which is used in oil/fuel/water seals for car and lawnmower engines. This one is the 3mm diameter cord but it comes in a variety of different thicknesses and you can buy it by the metre or in premade circles. All of which I am tempted to explore further for jewellery. But enough of my ponderings! Just look how easy this is to make….
Cut 3 pieces of the rubber cord measuring approx 33″, 9″ and 7″
Seperate out the tubing offcuts that are the same diameter as the cord (these will be the “beads”) plus 2 larger pieces of tube that will snugly fit all 3 pieces of cord (these are used like cord “crimps” to hold the cords together).
Take one of the larger pieces and thread all 3 lengths of rubber cord through it, with the longest piece extending out about 10″ and the ends of the 2 shorter lengths of cord flush with the top.
Thread the “beads” onto all 3 of the rubber cords in whatever arrangement pleases you. I have a couple of copper and aluminium elements thrown in there too. Set one of the smaller pieces of metal tubing offcuts to one side.
Slide on the second larger metal tube to clamp it all together, just like you did the first.
You’ll have the two cut ends of the longer length of cord left to join together. Slide that smaller bit of tube on one end. Join the cut ends of the rubber with a dab of super glue and hold in place for a few seconds. While the glue is still tacky, slide the tube offcut over to hide the join and crimp slightly with a pair of pliers.
Pop a few dabs of superglue into the top of the larger metal tubes where the rubber cords all meet too. Just to give an extra bit of hold. Quickly wipe away any excess that may drip through onto the cords below.
Leave to dry and you’re done!
I’m really rather taken with it. I don’t think it’s obvious at all that these are hardware/engineering materials and the whole thing has a contemporary and minimalist feel with clean, simple lines. And I love the textures and subtle metallic elements. Awesome with some simple black evening wear or over a plain collared shirt right?