Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Mystery Thing Revealed: Brassy Yet Classy, And A Bold DIY

So!  My most recent Guess The Mystery Thing challenge turned out not to be terribly mysterious.  Meh, it happens.  Bunches of people knew the answer to the question,"What ten letter word describes the metal pieces in these upcycled necklaces?"

Read on to learn the 'secret.'

First, though, here comes Mich's Honor Roll of the Most Creative (Totally Wrong) Guesses:

Maple Girl: A mystical magical keyhole that allows ordinary mortals to access the world of creative thinking, where we meet the prince/princess of creativity and they grant us the gift of seeing the world through different eyes.
Amy: A  mermaid's tail preserved in metal when she knocked into the first iron-clad metal ship that sunk into the deep blue sea.
Shannon:  Tongue depressors used by evil dentists/doctors. They sure do look painful.
Meijo's JOY: A bottle opener.
Ladiemaus:  A secret key to get into sooper fabulously fun party spots during Mardi Gras? Hey, Mich - there just so happens to be a strand of beads attached to that key! Does that mean you...you know, EARNED them? Nudge nudge wink wink.
Saraccino: Schlüssellochdeckel!
Dena:  "Swoopalinas"? "Flatnflowee"? "Swirlyplate"? "Hanginbrass"? Ugh...don't know.  Now I need E SCUTCH 'N SODA!
Anon: The only key that will open the door to Collinwood, the mansion in Dark Shadows.
Aunt Peaches: A robot's shoe horn.
Ashley:  On Halloween my friends and I decided to put a real dead pig snout in our science teacher's closet. We hung it from the light bulb and waited.  But what we saw was soul rattling.  THE PRINCIPAL was walking into the closet...and when she turned, it was attached to her face. The lady didn't seem to have noticed!  The teacher touched it and her whole face turned to metal and it fell to his hands.  And, well, I guess since you have it, that means the evil dude miniaturized it and gave it to you!

Oh, yikes!  I am now a tiny bit scared of my necklaces.

Okay, friends.  Time to see the answer.


Here ya go!

Escutcheons!  Wha...?  Such a fancy word.  It's that flat, decorative metal plate you sometimes find under a knob or handle.  Mine came off a bathroom cabinet in the process of extreme revampage.

The DIY is fun - but requires a little bit of boldness.  Want to try?  Here's what I did.

First, free your escutcheon from its knob or handle.

Now gird yourself for battle.  Don eye protection.  And start bending the escutcheon in half.

All the way, until the two ends are touching:

The next step was too intense for a photo.  Either that, or I forgot to take one.  Reapply yourself to bending - in the opposite direction.  You are basically folding it back and forth, back and forth, as many times as it takes to snap the metal in two!  Depending on the metal, it could take a single back-and-forth, or several.  Suddenly it will go *crack* and you will have this!

I snapped these with just one back-and-forth bending.  Interestingly, each and every time I snapped my escutcheons, one of the pieces made a nice straight edge, and the other was jagged and nasty.  If you have an electric grinder, you can smooth down both halves and get two pendants.  I didn't, so I only worked with the straight-edged piece.  It took just a minute to smooth the rough end with a metal file:

All that remains is to make some holes, for attaching jump rings and a chain.  You can drill the holes, or use a metal punch.  But I was without those tools, so simply pounded mine with a hammer and nail.

The hammer-and-nail holes aren't quite as pretty as a fancier method.  The metal may deform just a bit.  But fiddle-dee-dee to that.  I kind of like the rustic effect.

The shorter necklace has a swoop of beaded chain surrounding the pendant...looks kinda Moroccan?  Or something.

The other one is longer, on a single chain.  For the colored dots, I used puffy paint in the same hue as my glass beads.

Don't the dots make a cute effect?

There you have it.  Hope some of you are bold enough to try the metal-snapping technique.  Let me know how it goes!

Winners, winners!  First prize for first correct guess goes to Teresa.  And my random.org winner: Ladiemaus.  Congrats, hooray, huzzah to you both.

Thanks for playing, peeps!  See you soon with some more upcycled jiggery pokery.  Perhaps my next mystery will be a little more obscure?  We shall see.


  1. Es muy original, nunca lo habría acertado. Besos

  2. Yay! I still don't get it! And that's make even more fun!

  3. I think..It was the first mystery thing which I guessed right at first sight :) haha..beautiful..

  4. How did you get the beads to poke out of the nail hole in the shorter necklace? Puffy paint for the longer one? Who would've thought..it's a great match to the beads. And if you attach another escutcheon horizontally, you've made a cross for Sister Mary Margaret who used to rap knuckles with a ruler.

  5. It's all in the dots! Fabulous creativity once again.

  6. Adorable.....never would have thought of that.

  7. Yippeeeeeee! I GOT ONE!!!!!!!!!

    That is a fancy name though. Escutcheon. I'll have to use it in sentences forthwith so I remember it. "Don't touch my escutcheon." "That is one fine escutcheon you've got there..."

  8. Well now I've learnt a new word!! Surely I can fit that in the next scrabble game somewhere....