Wire Wrapped Jewelry Tutorials: Thrive and Grow Your Crafting Skills

Wire Wrapped Jewelry Tutorials: Thrive and Grow Your Crafting Skills

Many styles of jewelry use wire to make chains and findings. Wire wrapped jewelry tutorials teach that wires are ideal for producing lovely decorations on beaded necklaces or pendants because of its strength, flexibility, and natural beauty. Jewelry wire elegantly coiled or weaved can also be used as a stand-alone piece. Once you’ve mastered the fundamentals of wire wrapping and weaving, you’ll be able to make a variety of beautiful wire jewelry at home.

Wire Wrapped Jewelry Tutorials # 1: Selecting Your Jewelry-Making Supplies

Jewelry Tools

Before you begin crafting, invest in a set of jewelry cutters and pliers. These items may be found in most arts and crafts stores and jewelry and beading supply stores.

Supplies

Choose your favorite wire color and material. Silver, gold, and copper are the most frequent colors for jewelry wire, although color-coated wire comes in any shade. Keep in mind that different types of wire have varied qualities when making your choice.

Wires are affordable, made of base metals (such as copper or stainless steel) or alloys (such as brass or nickel silver). These are good possibilities when you’re first learning how to work with wire.

Sterling silver, gold, and gold-filled wire are popular precious metal jewelry wire materials (an alloy with a gold coating). While sterling silver tarnishes, gold does not. However, gold is softer and more easily dented or scratched.

Because memory wire keeps its coiled structure, it’s ideal for essential beaded bracelets and chokers.

More on Jewelry Wires

One of the basic things you will learn in wire-wrapped jewelry tutorials is that wires are available in a range of gauges. Depending on the piece you’re producing, you may require thicker or thinner wire or a combination of thicknesses. A low-gauge wire is suitable for tougher features like links and clasps, while a high-gauge wire is best for intricate coils and weaves.

A delicate wire crochet bracelet, for example, might be made with 28-gauge wire. On the other hand, if you need a heavy-duty necklace clasp, 10-gauge is the way.

For the best shape retention, use a more rigid wire. Most jewelry wire is available in three hardness levels: dead soft, half-hard, and full hard. Softer wires bend more readily than harder wires, but they don’t keep their shape as well.

Dead soft wire is ideal for delicate tasks requiring flexibility, such as wire weaving or wire crochet. As you work with the wire, it will naturally stiffen.

Dead soft wire can also make findings or other pieces out of highly thick wire that would be difficult to shape otherwise. When you’re finished, use a rubber mallet to tap the finished wire shape on a steel plate a few times to harden (temper) it. Master this when exploring other wire wrapped jewelry tutorials.

Full strong wire is tough to bend and can easily snap if overstressed. It is, nevertheless, the greatest at keeping its shape.

Half-hard wire is quite simple to shape and holds its shape well. Therefore, this wire is ideal for making solid linkages and load-bearing components.

To make your work go faster, buy premade findings. Clasps, connectors, chains, and pins are examples of jewelry findings. Findings can be found in arts and crafts and jewelry supply stores. In addition, premade findings can be incorporated into your hand-made creations to provide extra flair and make your task easier.

For example, you can build a one-of-a-kind necklace by wrapping wire links around beads and attaching them to a premade chain.

Elegant wire-wrapped bead earrings can be made with decorative chandelier earring settings.

Wire Wrapped Jewelry Tutorials # 2: Making Simple Wire Connections

Step 1

Choose a wire with a medium gauge. Because links are load-bearing components, you’ll need a thick wire to hold them up. Typically, a 20-gauge half-hard wire is a decent choice. Half hard wire (rather than dead soft) can also strengthen your linkages.

Make sure the wire is thin enough to pass through the drill holes if you’re using beads. You may need a bigger gauge for tiny beads.

Using the flush side of your cutters, snip off the very end of the wire. To make a flat edge, snip a small quantity of wire from the end of the length of wire you’re working with. The wire cutters’ flat (flush) edge should face the length of wire you’ll be working with (rather than the end you are snipping off). [3] This flat end of the wire will be used to form your loop.

You can make your loop in the wire while it is still on the roll, or you can cut off a longer length of wire to work with (e.g., roughly 12 inches (30 cm)). If you do cut a piece from the roll, don’t cut it too short, or you won’t be able to construct your link.

You generally won’t need to cut any of the wire off if you’re making a loop at the end of a premade finding, such as a head pin. Don’t worry, you will master this as you work on other exercises from other wire wrapped jewelry tutorials.

Step 2

With your round-nosed pliers, pinch the wire’s end. Between the ends of your pliers, gently hold the wire’s end. When looking at the pliers in profile, the wire should be flush with the pliers, with the end protruding beyond them. [4] Because round-nosed pliers have tapered tips, place the wire end closer to the base for a larger loop.

Please don’t squeeze the wire too hard, or it will dent. Instead, you need to apply enough pressure to keep the wire in place.

Step 3

To make a loop, carefully roll the end of the wire away from you. Turn the hand holding the pliers away from you after the wire is securely in place, and the wire will begin to wrap around one of the pliers’ jaws. As you do so, press the wire against the pliers with the thumb of your free hand. Reposition the pliers within the loop so that you may spin them again once you’ve turned your wrist to the max. Continue until you have a complete loop.

Make sure the wire is roughly the same distance from the pliers’ base as when you started when you adjusted them. If you don’t, your loop will be a little crooked.

Step 4

Rock it back and forth with the round-nose pliers to center the loop. You should have a “p” form after winding the wire around the pliers jaw. Insert one of the jaws and gently squeeze the wire just at the base of the loop to center the loop over the end of the wire. With your free hand, grip the wire tightly at the base of the loop and bend it back slightly with the pliers so that the loop is centered along the length of the wire-like the dot of an “i.”

You may need to use chain-nose pliers instead of round-nose pliers if your wire is too thick to bend into position with round-nose pliers.

Step 5

Close the loop with your chain-nose pliers. When you finish the loop, there may be a tiny gap between the end of the loop and the rest of the wire. With your chain-nose pliers, gently work the loop’s end back and forth while pushing in until the gap is closed.

The result will be a squashed loop if you try to squeeze the loop’s sides together from the outside!

Step 6

For added security, make a wrapped loop. Make a 90° bend about 2 inches from the end with your chain-nose pliers for a completely closed loop with a somewhat fancier appearance. Make a loop directly above the bend as usual, but this time leave a “tail” that extends at a 90° angle beyond the wire. Tighten the tail about four times around the wire, just below the bend.

When you’re finished, snip off any residual tail with your cutters. Then, squeeze the wrap lightly at the top and bottom with your chain-nose pliers or fingernails to tighten it.

Step 7

This technique is the simplest when you already have a bead on the wire. When making your 90° bend, grab the wire slightly above the bead. This will leave a few millimeters between the bead and the loop for wrapping the tail around.

Because you won’t be able to open this loop once it’s finished, link it to an element that can be opened, such as a simple loop or a jump ring.

Step 8

If desired, string one or more beads on the wire. If desired, you can slide a bead onto the wire and then construct a second loop on the opposite side. You can link multiple beads together in this manner. You could also build a loop above a bead by putting it on a flat-ended head pin. You may then use the bead as a charm or bangle by attaching it to a chain or ear hook.

For design ideas using simple wire loops or wrapped links, look online or in beading books or publications.

How to Make Wire-Wrapped Pendants

To wrap, choose a stone or other object. You can use almost anything, such as a tumbling stone, a crystal, a piece of sea glass, a coin, a shell, or a shark tooth. For this project, you’ll use wire to form a basket or cage around the object to make a pendant that may be worn as a necklace pendant.

This technique works well with slightly irregularly shaped objects and is most comprehensive in the center.

Most wrapped pendants are no more than 2 inches (5.1 cm) long, but you can wrap a larger object. However, remember that wrapping more essential things will necessitate more wire than wrapping smaller ones.

Step 1

Cut two pieces of medium-gauge wire into equal lengths. Choose a jewelry wire with a gauge of 20-22 and a half-hardness of the half. Because the wire will support the pendant’s weight, it’s advisable to use a pretty strong wire. The size of your pendant will determine the length you want, but 6–8 inches (15–20 cm) is usually plenty.

To obtain excellent, clean cuts, use the flush side of a wire clipper to snip the wires.

If you’re starting with wire wrapping, go with copper or another base metal instead of a more expensive precious metal wire.

To adequately sustain the weight of heavier pendants, use a thicker wire (e.g., 18 gauge instead of 20 gauge).

Step 3

Starting in the middle, twist the two wires together five times. Next, make an “X” with the two wires, ensuring that they cross in the center of both wires. Next, pinch the wires where they cross with your index finger and thumb in each hand and twist them five times in opposite directions.

Make sure the wires are twisting in the same direction and that you aren’t simply wrapping one wire around the other.

Straighten the wires on both sides of the twist. You’ll end up with an X-shape with a twist in the middle when you’re done twisting. To make an “H,” pull the wire legs straight and parallel to each other at a 90° angle from the twist.

Straighten the wires by tugging them in the desired direction between your fingers.

As you work on the pendant, you’ll repeat this technique multiple times.

Step 4

Place the twisted part of your pendant on one side. Choose which side of your pendant will be the front or back, then put the twisted part of the wire flat against it. The twist should run straight up and down and be centered midway between the top and bottom of the pendant.

Press the wires down along the pendant’s surface, following the shape of the pendant around to the other side.

Step 5

Twist the two wires again. Then, make a double twist on the other side of the pendant from the previous one with the two bottom wires. Make five turns, straighten the wires, and put the new twist-up against the pendant to sit flat.

The new twist will be on the opposite side of the first. It would help if you now had a ring to lay the bottom of the pendant safely.

Step 6

Continue twisting the pendant until you reach the top. Then, make a new twist using one of the pairs of wires above your previous two twists. As before, place it flat against the pendant. Continue both sides until the pendant is completely enclosed, all the way to the top.

With four loose wires, your pendant should now be in a wire “cage” at the top.

Adjust the cage as you go to ensure that your pendant is securely encased. You may achieve this by placing the stone flush against the twists you’ve previously produced and drawing the wires taut now and again.

Step 7

Take two of the cage’s top wires and twist them together. Next, please choose one of the remaining pairs of wires and twist it five times, but don’t place the wires flat on your pendant this time. Leave them sticking straight up instead.

This is the first step in making the bail, which is the ring that will hold your pendant in place.

Step 8

Wrap the last twist with each of the remaining two wires. Wind each of the two free wires around the vertical twist five times or until you reach the top of the twist, one at a time. Using your wire cutters, clip off the ends when you’re finished.

To construct a sturdy, tight coil, wind these wires gently and carefully.

Before snipping off the wayward end of each wire, you might want to pull it taut using your pliers. Then, after snipping the wires, use the pliers to clamp down any remaining ends.

Step 9

To make a loop, wrap the top two wires around a pencil. First, straighten the wires at the top of the twist to form a “T” shape at a 90° angle to the twist. Next, wrap the two wires around a pencil or other round-sectioned object (such as the jaws of a set of round-nose pliers) at the top of the twist in opposite directions to make a lovely, circular loop.

Make sure your loop’s two wires are firmly wrapped and closely spaced.

Step 10

To secure the bail, wind the remaining wire around the twist. Once you’re happy with your bail, wrap the ends of the two wires around the twist 2 or 3 times. Make sure your wraps are nice and tight. Remove the pencil when you’re through, and your pendant should now have a secure bail!

Snip the wires’ ends and flatten them with your chain-nose pliers when you’re finished.

Make a little loop at each wire end with the very tip of your round-nose pliers for a more refined look. Next, wind each wire into a spiral with the chain-nose pliers, then flatten the spirals on either side.

Browse Related Articles

Xinar's Shipping Policy

The domestic shipping charge is a flat rate of $3.95, no matter how many items you wish to purchase.

Priority mail is a flat rate of $8.25.

Canada shipping is a flat rate of $15.00.

International shipping is a flat rate of $17.00.

Items shipped via United States Postal Service with tracking.