I use tons of gears. I love Tim Holtz metal gears and I use tons of them. What I don't love is that I go through them so quickly. I have two solutions in my stash. One is I found metal gearish looking items at the hardware store. You can get 100 for a couple of buck then just ink them up at home and you are good to go. The other solution that I have is using die cuts. I know, I love the look of the metal. On a project such as the butterfly this week I used tons of gears. The ones on the bottom I used my die cut ones and on the top I used the TH Metal ones.
I have to admit I did like how the die cut ones turned out. I cut out the gears with TH Mini Gear die on scrap black chip board. Then I coated them with black utee and embossed. It gave them really nice dimension. Then I used inka gold copper and inked them up. I still let some of the black show. I loved these. On a few of them I just put the inka gold straight on the black chipboard. loved it.