jewelry findings

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jewelry findings

Post by Archived Topic » Thu Dec 16, 2004 6:21 pm

Over Christmas it cropped up in conversation that I used to make silver jewelry and I referred to the "findings" that were aviable. There were 6 nationalities in the group, including 3 Brits and one American, yet none had heard of the term. These are essentially jewelry "blanks"; earings, rings, pendants etc sold minus the filling...
A search on Google shows 71,000 references to "silver findings", but combing through on-line dictionaries gives me no clue to the origins of this expression.
It's a strange concept that something that has to be specifically created for a purpose is referred to as a "finding" Any ideas?
Robert 27dec04
Submitted by Rob Masters (Thailand - Thailand)
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jewelry findings

Post by Archived Reply » Thu Dec 16, 2004 6:34 pm

I couldn’t find a direct derivation for this expression, but I surmise that it arose from one of the older meanings of ‘find’ (OED III. 18), “to supply, provide, furnish,” which would imply that findings are supplies, provisions, furnishings. The first examples of ‘findings’ used in this way were by shoemakers (see quotes below).
<1846 “‘FINDINGS’ pl., the tools and materials used by shoemakers.”— ‘A Universal and Critical Dictionary of the English Language’ by Worcester>

<1858 “‘FINDINGS’, the wax, thread and tools which a journeyman shoemaker has to supply himself with for his work. ‘Ibid.,’ FINDING-stores, an American name for what are termed in England grindery-warehouses; shops where shoemakers' tools, etc. are vended.”—‘Dictionary of Trade Products’ by Simmonds>

<1896 “The cost of findings for a waist [[blouse]]”—“Godey’s Magazine,” February, page 222/2>

<1939 ‘FINDINGS,’ threads, tapes, buttons, bindings, hooks and eyes, slide fasteners, Featherbone, belting, braids, and other sewing essentials used in garment making; carried in notion departments.”–‘The Language of Fashion’ by M. B. Picken, page 57/2>

<2004 “JEWELRY FINDINGS - Finish your necklaces and other creations with elegant or just plain fun JEWELRY FINDINGS. We feature a complete range of ear wires, bead caps, crimp beads, jewelry clasps and wholesale JEWELRY FINDINGS. Choose between precious metal and plated JEWELRY FINDINGS. . . . . We have beautiful cones for gathering multiple strands, ornate end bars, designer spacer bars, pin backs, safety pins, watch FINDINGS and even eyeglass holders.”—‘Fire Mountain Gems and Beads’> [advertisement]
(Random House and Merriam Webster Unabridged Dictionaries, American Heritage Dictionary, Oxford English Dictionary)
Reply from Ken Greenwald (Fort Collins, CO - U.S.A.)
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jewelry findings

Post by Archived Reply » Thu Dec 16, 2004 7:01 pm

Thanks...most enlightening. I grubbed around through quite a few sources and found refs to the shoemakers (and all the modern ones, of course) but the "older meaning" eluded me.
Robmas 27dec04
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Post by Archived Reply » Thu Dec 16, 2004 7:41 pm

For those who have been ‘eluded’ by the “older meanings” of ‘find’ (OED III. 18), “to supply, provide, furnish, which would imply that findings are supplies, provisions, furnishings”:

Merriam-Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary provides further definitions and examples of the “older meaning of ‘find’”: To provide for the use of, provide with, SUPPLY <“For selected children the church FINDS half of this sum, leaving the parent to FIND the rest.”— Ernest & Pearl Beaglehole>.

Often used with “in’: <“There’d be all the neighbors to FIND IN [supply] the victuals and drink.”—Rachel Henning>.

Also used in the sense of to provide (room and board) especially as a condition of employment. <“He was chopping by day’s work—75 cents a day—and FOUND [provided/supplied] himself.”—Herman Melville>.

Often used in the phrases ‘everything found,’ ‘all found’[everything provided] <“Combining business and pleasure in a new kind of holiday camp with ALL FOUND [everything supplied/provided].”—Fred Majdalany> <“No worries and everything found [supplied/provided], and lots of Saturday-night spirits.”—George Moore>.

This older sense is also still used to mean ‘equip with what is necessary,’ especially in reference to boats. <The boat comes fully FOUND, ready to go.—‘Holiday’> <2004 “Fully FOUND and superbly equipped for comfortable cruising.” [boat for sale]>

Also, a FINDER is defined as one who deals in ‘findings’ (tools, materials, etc., used by artisans, such as those of a shoemaker) [Merriam-Webster’s]].
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Ken G – December 27, 2004
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