Monday, October 17, 2016

Scratching a very old itch!


I think I was bitten by the miniature bug when I was about 4 years old. I remember standing in front of a gumball machine at the drug store with my hand full of pennies. I was willing it to give me the prize I wanted. The prize that kept me awake at night.  It was a tiny folding pocket knife. There were always a few of them in the machine. They were real metal and had different colored pieces of plastic riveted on them. It never happened. All I got were gumballs and prizes like a plastic magnifying glass or tiny figures. :-(

Today, I found the pocket knife of my (age four) dreams and bought it. I have a good reason at this late date. I want to make a charm necklace out of all sorts of tiny things I have had since childhood. Lots of sterling silver charms, old New York subway tokens, ancient 2,000 year old Egyptian beads, antique coins, the list goes on and on. Plus there are a few things that have caught my attention while I was looking around the internet to add to my stash. One requirement, if it isn't sentimental, it has to be a functional working miniature!


 In my search I found the world's smallest pistols! YES, real working ones that either fire blanks or 2mm lead bullets! I spent hours looking around at all the options for a pinfire pistol. I couldn't believe the price range there is. They go from $6,300 American dollars for the ultimate (made in Switzerland) to $30.00 I decided on a price range and found one I liked. I found them irresistible. OK... Maybe you are anti gun... but seriously, you can do more damage to yourself with your X-ACTO blade than one of these little things.


The one I bought is just like the one above, except it has a ring at the very back of the grip. So I will be able to add it as a charm to a chain.
Here is a video of a guy shooting one of the world's smallest pinfire pistols.
  
 It occurred to me that other people were probably making this sort of necklace so I started looking for them. Here are a few of the crazy ones I found. 


The title of this necklace is.... "I am who they were" These photos are the makers ancestors.



 Edith Head typically wore her famous necklace of antique ivory theater tickets. The late Elizabeth Taylor loved the necklace so much that Edith bequeathed it to her at her death.


 I have no idea yet what mine will look like. It is a work in progress. This has had me on a merry search through the house wondering.... What the heck I did with THAT thing? Things, I haven't seen in years are being found.

33 comments:

  1. Congrats on your pocket knife find. But I'm sorry to say my Barbie wants the gun. Anyway looking forward to seeing progress on charm necklace

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    1. Thank you.
      If Barbie wants it that must be because Ken has been fooling around with Skipper.

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    4. No never Skipper It might be some posable fashionista (sorry deleted posts in error)

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  2. It used to be a thing..probably still is a thing in the UK to give a 16 year old a charm bracelet so that they could add charms over each milestone in their lives. I still have mine though it spends its life in a jewelery box. I love the idea though

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    1. That is interesting that charm bracelets were used for that in the UK.
      My Dad started my gold charm bracelet when I was 8 years old. I got a new charm for Christmas/birthdays. They are all soldered on a fully loaded bracelet which lives in a saftey deposit box at the bank. I have never worn it. I can't stand having something on my wrist, not to mention all that annoying jingling. I am too busy with my hands to wear such a thing anyway.
      I don't know how I got all these silver ones. Gifts from relatives I think.
      Making this necklace will just be a way to get all these fun little things together.

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    1. How nice of you to say so, thank you!

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  4. The charm bracelet thing was a thing when I was a little kid. I still have it, with a charm for different birthdays, graduations and other things.

    The necklace reminds me of an old fashioned Chatelaine. It'll be so neat to see when you've got all your charms strung on it.

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  5. You're right. It is sort of like a chatelaine. As a matter of fact I saw some charm necklaces that were made like that. They had far fewer charms but were still interesting.

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  6. me encanta la navaja y todas las miniaturas que sean recuerdos y sentimientos son muy especiales.
    Un abrazo
    Maite

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    1. Sí, es una especie de memoria, estado de cuenta tipo de cosas. Incluso si no me pongo la mía, todas esas pequeñas cosas van a estar juntos para que pueda mirarlos. Gracias Maite

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  7. The pocket knife and the gun are pretty cool! Great photos too

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    1. Thank you Troy. I thought that knife was pretty cool too. The gun is really fun.

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  8. Amazing miniature pocket knife. Isn't it funny what sets us off onto the adventure in miniatures.
    I had a silver charm bracelet as a child but sadly it was one of the items which was stolen in my precious hand carved wooden box I made as a teenager - see my account of that loss at https://dollmum.blogspot.co.uk/2015/04/collecting-treasure.html

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  9. How sad you lost that box and your bracelet! I really hate thieves. Not only do you loose your possessions but it leaves you with the creepiest feelings.

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  10. Hi Catherine! I think that the tiny gun is a HOOT and I love your story about the tiny pocket knife!
    I too, remember standing in front of those Impossible 5 cent gum ball machines. I had my eyes on a tiny deck of playing cards. I was about 7 at the time visiting my Great Grama in Seattle. Back then nickels didn't grow on trees, but 5 cents could buy a lot of candy at the corner store. Eventually had to enlist the aide of 2 of my cousins and use their nickels and lo and behold, I GOT that tiny little deck of cards and I was over the moon!
    Ah childhood!

    elizabeth :D

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  11. Awwww Elizabeth... You get it! :-))
    I am so glad you got your deck of cards. Do you think that was the beginning of your love of miniatures?
    Yes, The gun is a total hoot. I am sure if it is able to penetrate a can, it could do a reasonable job of getting under your skin. If you were dumb enough to aim it in that direction and fire it.
    For me it is just another working miniature that I find intriguing.

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    1. You're so right about that tiny gun being able to do some damage ( even if it only a tiny bit of damage) I was quite surprised that it was able to penetrate the can. I thought it would simply ricochet off of the metal, and he'd accidentally end up shooting himself in the eye- as in the movie "A Christmas Story", another nostalgic return to those days of yesteryear.

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  12. Thank you, I love this idea! So much so that I will now have something fun to do with so many of the tiny things I've collected since childhood that are not "dollhouse scale miniatures". Oh this is very inspiring. Your knife and gun are super cool, I have that same knife myself. Thanks again :)

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  13. I am glad you like the idea. I can't wait to see what you make.
    Thank you Linda.

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  14. Catherine, I enjoyed reading this post very much.....I can imagine your frustration as a child and not getting what you want. I look forward to seeing your braclet when completed....I am certain it will be wonderful!!! I sooooo love the 'Edith Head' necklace.....wow!!!!

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  15. Thank you Linda. It will be a necklace though.
    YES!!! That Edith Head necklace is fantastic. I can't even find those ivory chips anywhere online. They must be highly collectible. The are so obscure I can't even find in what years they were in use. Perhaps they were used in the USA and England???

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  16. Hi Catherine! I too remember trying to get a certain gumball miniature treasure! Mine was the working scissors along with a couple of other tools! I still have the pair of scissors! I had a silver charm bracelet given to me by my grandparents but the "charms" were all shields from different countries they had visited, and I found them rather boring! I don't know where that bracelet got to.
    As for the mini pistol... Whoa! That is a little TOO real for my tastes! The knife looks just like a RL "buck" knife I had... and it looks beautifully made! I really look forward to seeing your necklace! Ii am sure it will be a work of art! (Although I am spookily reminded of Marley in The Christmas Carol.... rattling his cash boxes on a chain!)

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  17. Hi! If you read Elizabeth's comment you saw she too had her hearts delight wrapped up in a gumball prize. What fun you still have your little pair of scissors.
    The miniature pistol has arrived and I shot it about 5 minutes ago. It has a much louder bang then I thought it would have! I am going to make my own ammunition for it because it is rather expensive.
    If I was bothered by loud bangs an other dangerous stuff I wouldn't have become a metalsmith. You just have to always have to take the greatest amount care.
    Thank you for your comment. It was great fun to hear your story.

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  18. Hello, fellow Gumball Goddess! That was me too, although my deepest unmet desire was a tiny perfume bottle with a top. Never got that either, but I did have a lot of gumball and cracker jack charms that my mom sewed to a hat for me. Which I lost. My life collecting minis has probably been a quest to replace that lost treasure.

    Can't wait to see your finished necklace.

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  19. Patricia, It is so good to hear I am not alone with the gumball machine. Sorry you missed getting your perfume bottle. Loosing that hat might have been the cause of your fifty k miniature expenditure (I am quoting that number from one of your old posts). ;-)
    In my case... My mother gave away my older sisters wonderful dollhouse that I wanted! It had beautiful antique book end papers for wallpaper.
    Anyway... I let them all know I wanted a dollhouse for Christmas that year. What I got was a lithographed tin dollhouse. You know the sort. The pictures on the wall, wallpaper and more were in the tin. I remember that I didn't say anything but I HATED it on sight!!!! That blunder of theirs, has cost me a fortune too. haha

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  20. Im with you when it comes to mini's in gum ball machines, the one in my town used to give you mini books or little plastic dishes..like Catherine my sisters and I got a tin dollhouse with plastic furniture..I hated it so I would play tornado (I watched one too many wizard of oz movies when I was a child) my mom finally took it away. now I buy my own dollhouses..my mother just looks at me like im nuts..oh well


    hugs
    marisa

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  21. It is amazing how many of us have a gumball machine story or memory.
    Those dollhouses should be illegal. There is nothing with less character or as unwelcoming as a tin dollhouse. haha I would have played tornado with you haha. Or at my house kick the can!
    you can tell your mom you found a whole lot of like minded nuts in blogland. :-)

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