Thursday, January 6, 2011

I'm such a TOOL nerd.

I love tools.  The more the merrier!  I'll admit, I can spend hours, no, days in a home improvement store or hardware store.  But, I wasn't always like that.

As a child I loathed hardware stores.  How boring.  Just walking around with Dad, surrounded by things I wasn't allowed to touch.  And that weird smell...somewhere between rubber, dirt, and machinery grease.  Yuck.

That all changed the day I picked up my husband's "good" hammer and struck a piece of sterling silver.  Ooooh, the beautiful and reflective dimple it left behind!

I couldn't get enough!  I bought my first set of metalsmithing tools.  A few hammers, a steel block, various pliers, a wireworking jig, tumbler, disc cutter, files, and more.  I was fairly content with my tool collection, but every once in a while itched for more.  Various jewelry making companies would send their yearly catalog and I would drool over the pages and pages of tools!  It's like when you were a child and the Sears Catalog would arrive in the mail and you and your siblings would flip through the pages circling all your Christmas wishes.  Well, I didn't circle things, but I did have a notepad with the item numbers, page numbers and prices tucked into each catalog. 

At one time, I didn't have a dedicated studio space, so some tools were off limits because of the space needed or the "mess" they created.  Hooray to day I got my own studio space!  On the top of the then-forbidden tool list was a flexshaft, torch and rolling mill.  Big tools. Expensive tools.  Messy tools.  I purchased a flexshaft and torch first.  Oh, what a difference they have made in my designs!  The flexshaft saves so much labor and can create textures on metals that were previously impossible.  And the torch allows me to fuse metals and create rings, bangle bracelets and more.  And the rolling mill??  Well, that is on it's way and should arrive at the studio next week!!

My tool fantasies have been filled....for now.  But, I know I'll feel that itch sooner or later and the hunt for more tools will be on again.

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