The Quest For The Unobtainable

I bet you think this post is about striving for wealth, or power, or fame - something along those lines. Well, no, it's about my great creative ideas using hardware or craft items UNTIL I find out no one makes the particular items I have in mind!

Well, here's what I mean...Example #1~ I normally don't like to add "silly" stuff to my leaves, but when I first began, I thought the waterlily pads were sort of boring (especially before I started painting my pieces), so I found little ceramic frogs/toads to attach to them, and discovered they were really popular. Enough so that I had trouble finding more! I finally found a local florist shop that agreed to wholesale ceramic toads, snails and turtles to me (they were floral picks), and they worked great! Then the store closed, so that was no longer an option (yes, they even gave me the name of the company, but they ignored my emails). Well, I'd just look online! Oh sure, I found lots of frogs and toads on Ebay - unfortunately, they were either the wrong size, too unrealistic (like wearing clothes or playing instruments ), or "collectible" - i.e., expensive!
...So here I am, making molds of the critters, and casting my OWN amphibians in cement! Then I have to paint them...yes, it was a good save, and it makes each one even MORE one of a kind, that's true, but it is also more labor intensive!

Example #2~...When I was much younger, I was fascinated by greeting cards that had glitter and rhinestones glued to them to enhance a scene, a flower, etc. I especially liked the "dewdrops"- tiny clear glass cabochons that looked like dew on flowers. I even got to the point that I would lift all the cards with dewdrops out of the rack, because inevitably, some of the stones would get knocked off loose in the card rack, then I'd pilfer them! (Well, I knew no one was going to go thru them and glue them back on, and I couldn't bear to see them thrown away!)
Here it is, thirty (or so) years later, and I decide that dewdrops would be perfect to add onto my leaf pendants. Simple; I'll just go to the local craft store, right? Well..., not so much. While they had faceted rhinestones up the wazoo, none were smooth! Still, I wasn't worried - again, I was sure I could find them online! Surprisingly, that didn't seem to be the case either. I found only ONE online store that carries them, and first, they are slightly larger than I'd like, and second, they're acrylic while I really had glass in mind.

So here I am, buying little clear glass beads that I'm actually physically BREAKING IN HALF to achieve the look I want! Again, more time and labor!
Example #3~I wanted to cast little steel nuts {no Iron Man jokes, please....I'm laughing though -"nuts" is a funny word! :-)
into my small bird feeders so I could just buy rods with threaded ends to screw them onto. Guess what? No one MAKES steel or aluminum rods with threaded ends - they are either threaded the entire length of the rod (which is unpleasant looking), or not at all!

.....So here I go again, manually threading aluminum rods individually because NO ONE MAKES WHAT I WANT!!! hmph.

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