Jul 202015
 

pink sparkles earrings

We often use these large hole beads in bracelets and sometimes in necklaces but not very often in earrings. This is a fun way to display just a couple of pretty sparkly large hole beads.

Choosing large enough spacers to snugly fit into those large holes and then careful wire wrapping holds everything in place. Little bits of  chain makes them dangle nicely.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Pink Sparkles Earrings Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 2 4-inch pieces 20 gauge wire
  • 2 3-inch pieces fine chain
  • 4 6mm spacer beads
  • 2 13mm large hole beads
  • 2 ear wires

Tools:

  • round nose pliers
  • two pairs chain nose pliers
  • wire cutters

Directions:

  1. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire 1 1/2 inches from one end.  Bend wire at 90° angle.
  2. Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert end link of one of the pieces of chain. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to make 2-3 wraps with wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.
  3. Slide onto wire a spacer bead, large hole bead and a spacer bead. Grasp wire with chain nose pliers and make a 90° bend 1/8-inch from spacer bead.
  4. Repeat step 2 to make another wrapped loop, inserting other end link of chain into loop before wrapping. Final wraps should sit snugly against spacer bead, holding spacers in place in holes of large hole bead.
  5. If you like, gently curve up ends of wrapped loops.
  6. Find center link of fine chain and insert loop of ear wire. If needed use chain nose pliers to twist loop of ear wire so earring faces front.
  7. Repeat to make second earring.
Apr 242015
 

friday findings-wrapped top drilled.jpg

Top drilled beads add a lot of interest to a piece because they aren’t necessarily so perfectly symmetrical as center drilled beads. Also, all those wire wraps give great opportunity to make nice neat coils or add lots of fun messy wraps.

I love the way the wire wraps above the purple pearl and the amber chips act as funky bead caps.

If you are wrapping with a fine wire (24 gauge or smaller) I would suggest you leave the shorter wire long enough to make the loop as well (treating both wires as one.) Then you can do your wraps with both wires, tucking in the shorter one when it runs out. This will ensure that that short wire doesn’t pull out from under the wraps. (Try it and you’ll see what I mean.)

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Friday Findings-Wire Wrapping Top Drilled Beads video over at YouTube.

Apr 062015
 

rings & crystals dangle earrings still (2)

These sweet earrings are SO easy to make. All you need to make are 12 wrapped loops and two ear wire inserts. Boom, done!

rings & crystals dangle earrings still (1)

It’s the size and type of rings you choose, plus the colors and finishes of the beads that will make your earrings your unique creation. Picture huge hoops with chunky bead dangles, and you have a completely different look than these dainty twisted wire hoops with delicate faceted crystals.

These would be a lovely gift for a special someone, Mother’s Day perhaps?

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Rings & Crystals Dangle Earrings Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 2 10mm metal rings, soldered closed
  • 2 8mm x 6mm facted crystals
  • 10 3mm frosted glass beads
  • 10 head pins
  • 2 decorative head pins
  • 2 ear wires

Tools:

  • chain nose pliers
  • round nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  • crimping pliers (optional)

Directions:

  1. Slide an 8mm x 6mm faceted crystal bead onto a decorative head pin.
  2. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits bead.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert a 10mm metal ring. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers or crimping pliers to tuck in end.
  3. Slide a 3mm frosted glass bead onto a headpin. Repeat step 2 to wire wrap this unit onto same 10mm metal ring as 8mm x 6mm faceted crystal. Repeat to add a total of 5 3mm frosted glass beads to metal ring.
  4. Use chain nose pliers to open loop of an ear wire. Slide metal ring into ear wire, having 3 frosted glass beads on one side and two on the other side of faceted crystal.
  5. Close ear wire loop securely. Repeat all steps to make second earring.
Mar 232015
 

Gold n Pearls Bracelet

We’ve made strung jewelry and we’ve made wire wrapped jewelry. How about combining the two by adding wire wrapped dangles to a strung bead bracelet?

These mother of pearl leaf dangles add some great movement and the simple color scheme keeps it elegant.  Want it even less busy? I think 4 or 6mm Swarovski crystals would be lovely as well.

Enjoy the video and Happy creating!

You can watch the Gold ‘n’ Pearls Bracelet Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 5 8mm pearls (House of Gems)
  • 4 12mm crackle glass lentil beads
  • 10 5mm antique gold plated fluted spacer beads
  • 5 4mm antique gold finish spacer beads
  • 5 15mm x 20mm mother of pearl leaves
  • 5 head pins
  • 2 crimps
  • 2 crimp covers
  • 2 wire protectors
  • 11 inches bead stringing wire
  • toggle clasp

Tools:

  • round nose pliers
  • chain nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  • crimping pliers

1.  Slide a 15mm x 20mm leaf onto a head pin, followed by a 4mm spacer. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits spacer bead.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.

Repeat to make five dangles with 15mm x 20mm leaves.

2.  Onto one end of bead stringing wire slide a crimp, then slide wire into one end of wire protector and out the other. Add one end of your clasp to the wire protector. Slide the wire end back through the crimp and bring crimp to within 1/8-inch of wire protector. Flatten crimp and squeeze ends of wire protector together. Trim excess wire. Cover crimp with a crimp cover by picking up with crimping pliers, sliding over flattened crimp and gently squeezing pliers. Use crimping pliers to shape cover into a round bead shape if necessary.

3.  String onto the wire the antique gold plated spacers, 8mm pearls, wire wrapped leaves and glass lentils in the following pattern:

spacer > pearl >wire wrapped leaf > spacer > lentil >

Repeat until you have four pearls and four lentils strung, then finish with a spacer, a pearl, a wire wrapped leaf and another spacer.

4. Repeat step 2 to add remaining piece of toggle clasp to other end of bracelet.

 

Jan 232015
 

friday findings-wrapping undrilled

Have you ever come across an interesting object that you thought would be nice in a piece of jewelry but it didn’t have a stringing hole and you didn’t know how to make it work?

In today’s video I show you how to use wire to wrap any undrilled piece so it will have two loops, positioned wherever you want. That way it can be either a link component or a pendant with dangles beneath.

It’s simpler than you might think and a great look.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Friday Findings-Wire Wrapping Undrilled Pieces video over at YouTube.

Dec 122014
 

friday findings Q&A #1

Happy Friday, all! Today I have for you what I hope will be the first of many question and answer videos for you.

I’m so glad that you all aren’t shy about asking specific questions in the comments on my videos, and I try to address them all.

The questions in this video are about more general issues, so I thought you all would find them helpful.

  • how to be sure your wire wrapped loops are secure
  • what to look for and what to do about sharp edges on beads
  • three different ways beads are drilled

Btw, if you do ask me a question in a message (not linked to a specific video) please be sure to mention by name which video your question is on. It wasn’t until after I completed this video that I realized Heather B’s question was on an entirely different topic!

Enjoy the video and happy creating. 🙂

You can watch Friday Findings-Questions & Answers #1 over at YouTube.

Oct 202014
 

citrine nuggets bracelet

Consider this bracelet excellent practice for making wire wrapped loops. You’ll need at least 40 to make it so full.

Other than the time it takes to make all your bead dangles, this is a fairly simple bracelet. The truly fun part is shopping and digging in your stash to choose the assortment of beads.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Citrine Nugget Bracelet Video Tutorial over at Youtube.

Materials:

  • 12 12-16mm citrine nuggets
  • 12 small metal bird shaped beads
  • 16 other beads
  • assorted seed beads and spacer beads
  • 40 head pins
  • 22 gauge wire (if you have any top drilled beads)
  • 7 inches seed beads or small beads (less than 3mm)
  • 8 6mm bicone beads
  • 10 inches bead stringing wire
  • 2 crimps
  • 2 crimp covers
  • 2 wire protectors
  • clasp
  • jump ring
  • 2-inch piece chain

Tools:

  • round nose pliers
  • chain nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  • crimping pliers
  • fine point sharpie
  • sliding gauge
  1. Use sliding gauge to determine size of your seed beads or small beads. Slide gauge out to slightly larger measurement and mark that point on your round nose pliers with a sharpie.
  2. Slide citrine nuggets, bird beads and other beads onto head pins along with assorted seed and spacer beads to make 40 bead dangles.
  3. For each bead dangle use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits last bead.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers at sharpie marked point and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop. Hold loop with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.
  4. If you have any top drilled beads  cut a 3-inch piece of 22 gauge wire. Slide wire into hole of bead, leaving ½ inch sticking out on one side. Bend both wire ends up at 90-degree angle to hole of bead. Bend wires over top of bead, making a triangle shape. Bend remaining ends of wire up, perpendicular to bead hole. Trim shorter wire to 1/8 inch from bend. Bend longer remaining wire at 90° angle. Use round nose pliers to make a loop at sharpie marked point. Wrap remaining wire around bends and down to cover bead hole. This can be done with neat, tight wraps, or in “messy wraps.”
  5. Sort your bead dangles into seven approximately equal piles.
  6. Onto bead stringing wire slide a crimp, then slide wire into one end of wire protector and out the other. Add one end of your chain to the wire protector. Slide the wire end back through the crimp and bring crimp to within 1/8-inch of wire protector. Flatten crimp and squeeze ends of wire protector together. Test to make sure crimp is holding and trim excess stringing wire. Cover crimp with a crimp cover by picking up with crimping pliers, sliding over flattened crimp and gently squeezing pliers. Use crimping pliers to shape cover into a round bead shape if necessary.
  7. Slide onto stringing wire a 6mm bicone bead, enough seed beads to equal 1-inch with the bicone and one pile of wire wrapped bead dangles. Repeat until you have added 7 sections of beads & bead dangles. Finish with another 6mm bicone.
  8. Repeat step 6 to add a crimp and wire protector to the end of stringing wire.
  9. Use a jump ring to attach clasp to the wire protector.
Sep 012014
 

I’m always amazed at how much a little bit of wire wrapping can dress up beads and jewelry.  The ceramic beads in this bracelet were just kinda “meh” by themselves, but look quite nice wrapped in little wire cages.

caged-beads-bracelet-still-3

In this project you’ll learn how easy it is to make caged beads.  These can be used for any kind of project where you use beads: earrings, necklaces or home dec.  Also, if you want more wraps around the beads, just cut your wire a bit longer to begin with.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

You can watch the Caged in Copper Bead Bracelet Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Materials:

  • 7 – 10mm x 15mm oval beads
  • 10 – 6mm bicone beads
  • 28 inches 20 gauge dead soft wire, cut into 4-inch pieces
  • toggle clasp
  • 2 crimp beads
  • 10 inches bead stringing wire

Tools:

  • round nose pliers
  • chain nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  1. Use chain nose pliers to make a loop in the end of a 4-inch piece of wire.  Continue looping wire loosely around making a spiral until 2-inches of wire remains.
  2. Make a loop on other end of wire and make a spiral as in step one. This spiral should face in the opposite direction so when the spirals meet in the center you have an “S” shape.
  3. Use pliers to gently pull out both spirals into a cone shape. Fold entire unit in half to make a wire cage.
  4. Slide a bead into cage, lining up loops with ends of bead holes.  Use your fingers to shape cage to bead.
  5. Repeat to make a cage for each of the seven beads.
  6. Slide a crimp bead onto 10-inch bead stringing wire. Slide wire through round part of toggle clasp and back through clasp. Flatten crimp with chain nose pliers.  Trim excess wire with wire cutters.
  7. Slide on a 6mm bicone and a caged bead, making sure wire goes through loops of 20 gauge wire, then through the bead and back out through other  loop of 20 gauge wire.
  8. Repeat step 7 to add all caged beads to bracelet. Slide on last three bicones, a crimp and bar of toggle clasp. Slide bead stringing wire back through crimp, flatten with chain nose pliers and trim excess wire.

 

Jul 072014
 

Here’s a different twist on wire wrapping beads to a frame. Instead of center drilled beads today I used top drilled teardrops and wrapped the wire around the tips between each wrap. The wire adds interest & texture and the spiky look of the beads sticking out from the frame is kinda cool.

Summer Skies Crystal Earrings

You don’t have to use all the same beads, either. How about graduating them in size from larger in the center to smaller on the sides? Or, you can place the bead ends pointing inside the wire ring, rather than outside.

This is a great design to use your imagination and come up with your own variations.

By the way, I’m trying something different in my videos, speeding up the action and doing a voice over. It makes the videos shorter, but perhaps the steps are more difficult to follow?

Let me know in the comments which way you prefer.

Enjoy the video and happy creating!

Materials:

  • 2 ear wires
  • 2 1 1/8-inch diameter wine glass charm hoops
  • 10 13mm x 6mm top drilled teardrop crystals
  • 2 20-inch pieces 24 gauge wire

Tools:

  • chain nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  1. Leaving a 1/2-inch tail, tightly wrap one piece of wire around a hoop four times, keeping the wraps close together.
  2. String on a crystal bead and hold the tip against the hoop. Wrap the wire one time around the hoop, then wrap four or five times around the hole area of the bead.
  3. Wrap wire four times around the hoop, again keeping the wraps close together.
  4. Repeat steps 2-3 four more times. Trim excess wire at both ends.
  5. Center beads on hoop if necessary.
  6. Bend down straight end of hoop approximately 1/8-inch and tuck into loop.
  7. Open loop of an ear wire and attach to loop of hoop. Close securely.
  8. Repeat all steps for second earring.
Jun 232014
 

Sometimes all it takes for inspiration is a lovely grouping of colors.  As soon as I saw Swarovski’s “Sea Breeze” assortment of 6mm bicone crystals, I knew what I wanted to do.

sea-breeze-crystal-necklace-still-down

(Click on either photo for a closer look.)

I have no idea of the name of the pendant shape. It was a free goodie tucked in with an order from Art Beads and I wasn’t able to find it in any Swarovski catalog.  If you know, please let us know!

sea-breeze-crystal-necklace-still-hanging

The chain is actual antique brass… it’s cuckoo clock chain from my friends who repair clocks.

You can watch the Sea Breeze Crystal Necklace Video Tutorial over at YouTube.

Happy creating!

Materials:

  • desired length 4-links-per-inch necklace chain with clasp (mine is 30 inches long)
  • approx. 6-inches 7-link-per-inch chain, separated into links that are 4, 5, 6, 7, & 8 links long
  • 1 package 15-6mm Swarovski crystal bicone beads in color assortment “Sea Breeze”
  • 15 daisy spacers for bicones (optional)
  • 18mm x 10mm Swarovski crystal pendant
  • 2 bead caps for pendant (optional)
  • 15 head pins
  • 1 3-inch piece 20 gauge wire

Tools:

  • two pair chain nose pliers
  • round nose pliers
  • wire cutters
  1. Slide onto a head pin: 6mm Swarovski crystal bicone bead and a daisy spacer.
  2. Use chain nose pliers to grasp wire just at point where it exits daisy spacer.  Bend wire at 90° angle.  Grasp bend with round nose pliers and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a loop.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert end link of one of the short pieces of chain. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.
  3. Repeat steps 1 & 2 to add a 6mm crystal to one end of each of the smaller pieces of chain.
  4. Find center link of necklace chain. Repeat steps 1 & 2 to add a 6mm crystal to every other link on each side of center link.  (Five crystals on each side.)
  5. Grasp 3-inch piece of wire near the center with chain nose pliers; make a 90° bend. Grasp bend with round nose pliers about halfway up the round nose and wrap wire around pliers as far as possible to start to make a larger loop than usual.  Reposition pliers to finish loop.  Slightly twist loop open and insert other end links of each of the five short pieces of chain. Close loop and hold with chain nose pliers. Use another pair of chain nose to wrap remaining wire around wire below 90° bend. Use wire cutters to trim, if necessary. Use chain nose pliers to tuck in end.
  6. Slide on a bead cap, if using, 18mm x 10 mm Swarovski crystal pendant and another bead cap.
  7. Repeat step 2 to make a wrapped loop attached to center link of necklace.