In the last few months I've been experimenting a lot with very light or very heavy materials, and, while last weekend I used an old film to make a necklace, today I resorted to a more childish and slightly heavier material, glass marbles.
My fascination with marbles goes back to when I was a child and we used half-coloured/half-transparent plastic marbles with faces of cycling champions printed on a little piece or cardboard glued inside each marble to re-enact cycling races on tracks carefully created on the beach.
The same tracks were also used for competitions with glass marbles, though I usually preferred not to play with the glass marbles but to simply contemplate their colours or put them in a bag and enjoy the noise they made as they clinked together.
Being so obsessed with marbles it was only natural that my first thought when I saw a few bags of marbles in a toy shop was, apart from the Amélie marbles scenes, a necklace.
So here's the material you need to create a "Going Marbles" necklace (or, if you prefer cuff bracelets - recommended to those of you who don't like extremely heavy necklaces, but don't mind carrying a little bit of extra weight around the wrists): a piece of felt (green will work better with classic greenish marbles); around 200 glass marbles (for a necklace); special glue (tile glue for external use is better - in case it rains on you the glue won't melt, avoiding the marbles to create a rather dramatic but unwanted effect as they fall from your necklace to the ground...); a puncher and hand riveting tool (plus six metal rivets); a ribbon.
Cut a round collar out of the felt (if you don’t feel sure about what you’re doing, make one in paper, check the size is right and then cut the felt), punch six holes at the back (check out the distances by trying the collar on your neck) and rivet the holes.
Start gluing the marbles on the collar one after the other, making sure you put on each marble the proper amount of glue (remember to put enough - but not too much - glue on each marble); leave the necklace to rest for at least 24 hours.
Thread a ribbon through the rivets at the back and tie it up like a corset, making sure the necklace is not too tight or loose.
Decorate the ends of the ribbon with a few marbles - this trick doesn't only have a merely decorative purpose but also makes sure that, if the ribbon unfastens, it won't slip out of the rivets unnoticed causing the sort of necklace malfunction you want to avoid.
Wear the necklace and enjoy it, remembering that, once you're tired of it, you can always remove the marbles, clean them up and, if you're as obsessed with marbles and prone to spurts of childish behaviour (like myself...), play with them once again.
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