Jen here. Recycling and upcycling are two of my favorite ways to get material for my projects. At the last bead show I attended I bought a bag of watch parts and proceeded to play with them the second I got back to a work space. I had a few used gift cards around and figured I'd throw those into the mix, too.
Here is the random mix of parts before I started playing.
I started cutting shapes out of the gift cards and drilled holes in them. Hmmm, wonder where I got them... hee hee.
Here are some earrings I made with just findings and watch parts.
And the ones I paired with the gift card shapes and watch parts.
Watch parts and beads...
The most fun for me is spreading out all the random materials I collect and just start mixing and matching. Put stuff next to each other to see how materials interact visually. Basically, just play and see what happens. Playing without expectations is the surest way to break any creative block.