How to Distress and Expose A Pocket Watch

Hi! This is Megan with and today I’m going to show you How to take a part and Distress A Pocket Watch I’m working on this piece here and it
has all these vintage watch faces and I wanted to have the pocket watch as part of the piece but I didn’t want the full pocket watch, so this is the one that started this way, so this pocket watch started like this pocket watch you can see know it’s really not like that any more, so just going to show you what I did first thing is a lot of our pocket watches come on a necklace chain open the jump ring and remove the chain okay now working with this you need to make sure
that you’re not going to be crushing a glass crystal on your pocket watch so just be really careful and if you can’t get the crystal out be careful, some of them are plastic, some of them are glass so be really careful because you don’t want to end up
with your hands full of shattered glass the other thing is some of this involves
like filing and prying things open so please please please be careful and use
caution and don’t hurt yourself trying to get this thing open and it’s also a really good idea to wear safety goggles when you’re working with this kind of stuff I’m using a diamond file a lot I’m using a Vintaj Relief Block and this is actually a bead scooper but I use this for prying things open all the time this is what I use that I really found was helpful for this if you have something else that you want to use be careful and make sure not gonna
damage anything but I’m using this with this intended for scooping beads the first thing I’m going to do is take this edge here and kind of work it into the back where the case attaches on the pocket watch and you’re going to ding it up but the whole point is to the distress it, so don’t be worry about dinging it up take back off This little guy is running and it’s
running like crazy, this one’s actually defective. It goes crazy the second hand is fine I would recommend not winding your pocket watch before so that you don’t have it moving around to get the face off to give the crystal off open the lid of the watch and turn it over and then you can use plier or your end of your diamond file, anything find a spot where they’re no moving parts moving carefully reach through and push and see this one, just popped right out with what I’m doing right now I’m actually my goal is to keep the watch moving I like the idea of how to be able to
have the movement in the piece and working on for example when you’re trying to remove the crystal be careful that you’re not inhibiting the movement of the actual clockwork mechanism okay now remove the lid which do not try to cut through the pin that’s holding it on it’s really really really hard and you’ll most likely going to damage your cutting tool if you try
to cut through the pin so because I’m going for an aged distressed beat up kind of a look I’m not going to make this very very at all I’m going to rip it off and now you’ll noticed that you have these kind of jagged sharp bits here left so you need to go in with your file and just file them down and if you do a lot of filing you wanna
wear a mask that you don’t breath in the little metal particles File that down until it’s not sharp anymore because the last thing you want is something that can cut you on a piece of jewelry if the file hits the rest of it that’s fine, I’m gonna go back later and file the rest of it anyway now I have this nice, flat open, exposed clock kind of piece but since I’m using it with a bunch of vintage pieces and some pieces that I have distressed also I want to basically mess it up. I don’t want it to
look so pretty because this against that looks shiny and new a couple of things that I am doing for that is I’m going to take a diamond file and file it and it’s gonna put scratches so kind of just wherever you want them so of course you don’t wanna take like
your grandpa’s pocket watch and do this to it, you’re gonna purposefully destroy something to include it into a piece just keep that in mind if you have an old not valuable pocket watch or you get a new one for the purpose but you don’t want to get a really valuable one or use a new one I’m also going to mess up the face a little bit, put scratches into it and if you’re using this particular watch thats for this project be careful because the little numbers come right off so if you are scratching across they’ll come off so that’s fine, I lost some of the the numbers on
mine and I don’t mind that but just f.y.i. they do move around or come off place it flat down when you’re working it will come come through the back place it on a flat surface and I’d just went through with a tip of a file and made some gouges and some scratches and it kind of make a horrible noise but it’s an affective way to make it look kind of old and beat up you gotta do something on the face there or else
the face looks a little too pristine so I have some scratches and stuff. I’m gonna go in
with my Vintaj Relief Block and I’m going to relief the actual metal of the casing so I’m going to use the dark grey sides to wear down some of the finish and don’t just do the sides and then leave like the loop and the push button and everything or else it will look kind of odd and then I’m going to use the light side and if you want the light grey it will kind of buff and shine it to make it looks really worn and you can see that’s kind of like instant old stuff and you can play around and add as much distressing as you want but that’s the basic process to kind of get yourself something that’s more thin
and then exposed and kind of dismantled looking if you want glue it into something and make sure that you don’t put glue on
the moving parts in the back, you just want to go around the casing and that’s going to be a really effective way to kind of destroy a pocket watch and make it look old and beat up. Go to to purchase beading supplies and to get design ideas!

6 thoughts on “How to Distress and Expose A Pocket Watch

  • omg should keep that someone would pay money for a defective spinning watch like that like for creepy movie or just to scare friends.

  • I bought one of those but more to use it since I hate battery quartz  watches. for some reason battery devices tend to burn my skin.

  • It’s a neat piece of artwork, and I appreciate the effort and creativity that went into it, but I really wish people wouldn’t use vintage watch faces for projects. We in the vintage watch community need those parts (we have more movements than faces and cases), and repurposing even marginal parts means we have fewer parts for repair and restoration. For example, it’s often necessary to graft bits of watch faces, such as the sunk seconds dial, from one one dial to another in order to have a single clean period correct dial for a given watch.

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