Boys’ Hardware Accessories

      It seems to be somewhat easier, to come up with crafty ideas for my girls. But the other equal half of my kiddos, are boys!  I know they get just as excited when I am making something for them, too. So I try to see what cool ideas I can come up with, that they’ll dig.

     Something recently got me thinking about hardware.  Hardware is just cool, and definitely boyish! With all the various sizes and shapes that it comes in, for all kinds of building and fix-it projects, I got brainstorming what cool projects I could come up with for my boys.  In this post, I’m sharing some hardware jewelry and belts I made for them.

  

boys’ hardware accessories         I picked up a couple of adjustable belts at an army surplus store, and some suede string in a few different boyish colors, at the craft store.  I also gathered some heavy duty sewing thread, a sturdy quilting needle, and of course, a variety of hardware!

 

      I have to say, picking out the hardware was pretty darn fun! I went to the hardware store with all of my kids in tow, and we were there for a good while! I think we were making the store clerk a little nervous that we’d mix up the hardware in the 2 aisles of tiny organized drawers of hardware!  But we didn’t. ; ) 

     I knew I’d be getting some good ole hexagon bolt nuts and flat washers. But I was eager to see what other cool little shapes I could find as well.  I thought the square nuts and star lock washers were very cool, so I got a bunch of them as well. Now, if your husband is handy as mine is, you may already have some of this kind of hardware at home. My husband did have a big tin of hardware, but they were really old and dirty. While it would have been great to recycle that, I wanted new and shiny pieces for these projects.

 

boys’ hardware accessories

    To make bracelets, choose a hardware element, and then figure out how much suede string length you’ll need to tie round one side of a boys wrist, and double that length, with a little extra for tying. Do the same with a piece for the other side of your hardware element. For a necklace, cut a single piece long enough for the desired length and tying.  The above photo demonstrates how you can attach the suede string to the hardware:  with your piece of string folded in half, feed your two loose end through the backside hole of your hardware, out of the front, and then bring those ends  in between and through the loop on the opposite end. Pull and the loop will close onto the hardware, as seen.

    

boys’ hardware accessories

    Here are three finished bracelets, using a single piece of hardware.  If you prefer, the end of the strands for any of the jewelry shown, could be finished with clasps, but we didn’t bother.  We just tie them on.  It adds to the casual feel!  (Warning: You do need to tie them tightly though, or they tend to just come untied.)

 

boys’ hardware accessories

   Here is a necklace, using a flat washer and a square nut. It’s fun to play around with the hardware, and seeing what combos you can come up with, for a different design or look.

 

boys’ hardware accessories

    This is the front view of another necklace, using a double strand of suede in 2 different colors, holding a hex-nut in the middle and square nut on each side.

 

boys’ hardware accessories

    This is a side view of the same necklace.

    Now, for the tricked out adjustable belts!  These take just a little more time and simple effort! But if you get the smiles from your boys that I did, it’s well worth it! Well, actually it’s only fair to admit that their big sister asked me if I’d like some help sewing the hardware these, and I happily said “yes!”  So maybe you’ll have a helper too, but might I at least suggest that you at least use the help of a thimble! Pushing a needle through the material of these belts can result in some sore fingertips.

     These first couple of steps that I explain next, are actually easy to do, and probably steps you’d figure on your own would be helpful to do first. But, I thought I’d just suggest them just in case. More than anything, they are most complicated for me to explain! So bare with me. (Or skip the directions if you don’t plan on needing them.) :

 

boys’ hardware accessories

        The first tip I have for you, is to get a waist measurement of the belt wearer, if you can.  Or, you can just use the belt on the boy(s) to figure things out, which is what I did! These adjustable belts can be cut to length, so that is a wonderful thing. But because of the hardware elements you’ll be hand sewing on, you need to know where that buckle is going to be on the belt! Here’s how I did it:  I simply slid the belts right through the loops of my boys pants that they had on, just sort of overlaying the excess of the belt over the buckle, to figure out how much of the belt you’ll be needing. Slide the buckle along the belt, and determine how much of the belt end would be fed through the buckle, when putting it on. By doing that, you’ll get an idea of where to lock the buckle into place, with the toothed lever underneath. Mark each side of the buckle with chalk. Then you can really feed the belt through the buckle, and mark off where the ‘tail’ of the belt is, that is coming out of the buckle, and which is actually the opposite end of the belt. You are marking it off with chalk, because you don’t want to sew any hardware on that area, or it will not fit through the buckle. (Think about it. ;)   So you’ll only want to be sewing elements on the area of that will actually be around their waste – not the piece that will be going through the buckle.  (Am I over-explaining here? This is the longest paragraph in the whole post – I swear. ;) Once you have the buckle in place on the belt, with the right amount of tail, you will see the excess of belt material that you can cut off.  Be sure to cut the right end, that is already a rough end!  It’s the end closest to where the buckle is. You do not want to cut off the sealed end with the metal piece! 

     Once the buckle area is chalked off, and the tail is marked off, you can make a couple of tick marks between belt loops if you’d like, so you generally where the are of belt will be showing. This is not necessary, but an added step if you want the hardware to show in just the right places, and not hiding under any loops. Then you can remove the belt off the pants, and cut off that excess material you won’t need. They come pretty long from the army surplus store, even at the shortest length.  Them I took off the buckle for the time being, to be able to work with the belt easier.  Next, I laid the belts flat on the table, and I figured out how spaced I wanted the hardware pieces, by just generally laying them out, and then measuring the estimated space.  After marking where I wanted my first piece, I measured and made a tick mark about every 2 1/2 inches from there. 

boys’ hardware accessories

    Here are a couple of finished belts.  The hardware pieces are just quickly hand sewn on. I secured each each side of the hardware with 2 stitches, using the heavy duty thread. I also did one stitch in the center of the hole (of the hardware) just through the belt material, to take up some thread slack on the back side, while crossing over from one side of the piece of round hardware to the other. This allowed me to sew on a whole piece of hardware at a time, before finishing off the stitch and cutting the thread. (I started with long doubled thread, so that I could sew on and finish off a few pieces of hardware at a time, before really needing to re-thread a new strand of thread.)

     I’m happy to say, my boys were thrilled with their new accessories!  So much so, that they were happy to model for me, so they could show you how cool it looks sporting these hardware accessories.  Take a look for yourself…..

boys’ hardware accessories

     Yup, this Mama’s boys. And I love it! (Although their triplet sister, and big sister, are just as much my blessings!)

 

boys’ hardware accessories

I think they’re looking cool (with or without accessories), and I think they know it.  Rico Suave 1 and 2……no?  ; )  lol.

 

boys’ hardware accessories

     They don’t normally tuck shirts in, but they’ve been wanting to, to show off their belts. Their Daddy tucks his shirts in, all lot of the time. I don’t get it, but I love him anyway. lol

 

     So there you go: My boys sporting their cool new accessories, Designed by Mama! And yes, I did edit out all of their bumps, scrapes and bruises, acquired by all of the ways boys full of antics get them! But tell me what you think;  Is wearing hardware possibly the new cool?  Or do my boys just make it look good?



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Comments

  1. So fun! These are really really cool for the dudes and easy to make! Great job!!!
    xo Tara

    • Thanks Tara! It seemed like a pretty cool idea in my head, so I was happy it all looked as cool as I thought it would. I’ve got a feeling I’ll be doing more projects with hardware. lol. It IS fun!

  2. I love these…they turned out awesome…thanks for sharing :}

  3. crafty_grandma says:

    Just found your site – better late than ever – luv it!! My 2 grandsons are a quite a bit jealous when I make their sister jewelery….now I can finally make something ‘cool’ for them! How old are your boys? My gr-sons are 11 & 6 Can’t wait till the snow melts so I can go and get my box of washers & nuts – I knew one day they would come in handy!! (I had bought a kit and my husband told me it was ‘useless’ stuff!!! Tfs

    • Hi Crafty Grandma! What a great name. ; )

      Well here’s hoping your grandsons will be pleasantly surprised with these accessories you made just for them, then! Our boys are both 10 years old now (9 when I took these photos though.) They are two of our triplets, with a sister in the middle. : ) She gets most of the jewelry pieces I make too, so that’s why I was inspired to make the boys something to wear as well.

      Thanks so much for coming by! Have fun with this project, and please come again.
      ~Laura / House Of Joyful Noise

  4. Brandy Hackman says:

    Sharing this idea
    don’t know if you need a craft for the boys day camp.

  5. Did you make the one on your sons left wrist also…Orange t-shirt..?? I don’t think I saw that one in the description. What did you use to make it?

    • Oh no, Cassie! That’s his medical bracelet. LOL.
      He has a severe peanut allergy, and wears that all of the time. Sorry about that!

    • I’m not sure if I’m replying to the right comment….had to delete my old one to do it. Sorry I made that mistake about the medical I’D bracelet. The strange thing is my son also has a peanut allergy…a severe one also and I have been looking online for the best I’D bracelet for him. He’s five so I need something comfy. He has an epipen at school and also other food allergies as well as severe eczema. He’s had a few close calls with kids and pb & j sandwiches at school.

      • Hi Cassie – You replied correctly. : ) You just click on the orange REPLY link in the box directly under the comment you are replying to. I still see your old comment too.
        Anyway, that IS interesting. A little coincidence there I guess. We ordered his from stickyj.com, but there are many places online. But it is comfy. He’s been wearing his at LEAST since he was 5. It’s a chain with pretty heavy/thick links, and we have it just fitting so it can’t clip off, but loose enough to spin on his wrist. With the right tools you can remove some links or add some back on as he grows. Although it may get scratched up enough that you want to replace it at some point. We have once. Our boy is 10 now. He also has a dog tag one, just because he wanted the option, and thinks it’s cool. ; )
        So scary with the allergies combined with other kids and school lunches. We home school, so it’s not a factor for us. But it’s another reason I’m glad we do. A medical id bracelet for your son is something I STRONGLY recommend. And have on it listed all of his life threatening allergies. Good luck to you! And BTW, if you and your family are missing peanut butter, Sunbutter is a great replacement! I’ve even blogged about it. LOL
        ~Laura

        • I love your blog. I just came across the desk your husband made….I love it and will be showing my husband :) Thanks for the bracelet info! I also have a 15 year old daughter, Alexis, who is in her first year of homeschooling. I will be looking into your homeschooling info tips….I am a little lost. We are using g the Abekka program. Not sure if we chose the right program or not.

          • Thanks Cassie! I do love my desk! Sitting at it right now! LOL
            Now…..when you say “I ALSO have a 15 year old daughter, Alexis,…”, are you just telling me that you have another child, or do you know that WE have a 15 year old daughter named Alexis too?!! We do! Maybe you know that from the about page or something. Yet another coincidence! LOL. All 4 of our kids are home schooled; Alexis being the oldest and a sophomore.
            I wish there was MORE on our blog about homeschooling that would be helpful but, truth is, it’s just such a natural lifestyle for us, I’m never sure what to blog about. So there are far better blogs out there with a lot more tips and info than you’ll find here at this point. And really….LOTS of great resources to help you these days. But, feel free to email me for questions or support any time, if you really need some. We’ve been home schooling for 8 years now.
            TheRichardHome@aol.com
            ~Laura

  6. wow, your boys are gorgeous and your idea is just… fantastic!
    thanks for sharing it.

  7. Nice can you put friendship bracket. Like how to Make them step by step for boys and girls. Thanks it would mean the world to me. Then I can give it to my boyfriend.

  8. Hello, as I told you in my recent comment, your “boy’s Hardware Accessories” were a source of inspiration for me. I made a red & black friendship bracelet with a hex-nut at the center. My (almost) 7 year-old-son is delighted with it. You can see it on my publication (it’s in French but there are photos and a link to your article), if you’re interested.

    http://creativ-idees.over-blog.com/article-bracelet-bresilien-bracelet-a-pois-termine-porte-119721343.html

    Have a joyful noisy day!

    • Hey Casse-Bonbec! – That came out very cool! Great way to take our idea, and make it your own! I’m so glad you came back to share the results of your inspiration! That always makes us smile. : ) Your crochet work is quite lovely as well.

      It does indeed look like another joyful noisy day ahead here!
      Hope you have one as well. Take came, and please come again.
      ~The Richard Family.

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