This tutorial will teach you how to make a beautiful set of earrings and a pendant.
Wire work is one of my favorite ways to make jewelry. It can be incredibly ornate or elegantly simple. Many times what looks very difficult and seems like it would take a lot of time and skill to make, can actually be very easy and quick if you follow the steps. This pendant and earrings set is a good example. In just a few easy steps you can create something stunning. Perfect for beginners, this set is a great way to get your feet wet if you’ve never tried wire wrapping. It’s also a great base for those with more experience to add their own shapes for something even more intricate!
You can download a PDF file of these instructions here.
Time: This should take a beginner 30 – 45 minutes to complete the first earring. The second earring and the pendant will no doubt go much quicker.
Cost: $3 – $4 with lots of beads and wire left over.
What you will need:
- 4 feet of 30 gauge
- 18” of 24 gauge
- 27 – 4mm crystal bicone beads:
- 6 dark pink
- 12 medium pink
- 9 light pink
- Round nose pliers
- Close nippers
- Thingamajig or something on which to wind the wire. It should be slightly larger in diameter than a large paper clip (about 1mm)
- 2 Earring hooks
- 1 Chain
- 3 – 6mm jump ring
- If you are using a thingamajig:
- Wind the end of the wire 3 times around the handle. I am using the smallest one, about 1mm.
- Thread the straight end through the 2 lowest holes on the thingamajig.
- Holding the wire taut, not tight turn the handle clockwise with your other hand.
- If you are not using a thingamajig:
- Use something that is about 1mm in diameter and about 8 inches long.
- Hold the end of the wire tightly against the rod so it doesn’t spin while you are winding the wire.
- Start winding the wire pushing the coil together every now and again.
- You will need 200 coils and I suggest you stick as close to that as possible. You need to turn the same number of coils on the opposite earring so they both match up.
- Cut the wire leaving about a 3” tail.
- Cut about 6” of the 24 gauge wire and thread through the center of the coil you just made, with even amounts at each end.
- Bring the ends together and cross the 24 gauge wires.
- Take one end of the 30 gauge wire extending from the coil and wind it once around where the 24 gauge wires crossed. Do the same with the other side.
- Pull the 24 gauge wires to tighten up the coil and have it meet at the top.
- Fold the wires out to hold their position.
- Twist the two 30 gauge wires together as neatly and tightly as possible. Stop at about an inch and trim the wires close to the twist.
- Pull the two 24 gauge wires so they are pointing straight up with the twisted wires between them.
- Using the round nose pliers about 1/4″ above the coil bend all three wires backward until they touch the coil, creating a loop.
- Hold the wires in the back even with the coil and bend the wires to the left. Keep the wires all the same size and moving in exactly the same direction. Make sure the twist is still in the middle
- Hold the loop you just made and bend the wires to the right, over the loop and around to the back.
- Now the twist is just about gone so bend the other two wires around the front above and below the first winding, and to the back again.
- Use your close cut clippers cut the two wires and the twisted wire in the back close to your work. You have completed the bail.
- Cut a 12” piece of the 30 gauge wire and string on a dark pink bead and send it towards the end of the wire. Fold the wire up and twist it so the beads won’t fall off.
- Load the rest of your beads as follows:
- 2 medium pinks
- 2 light pinks
- 2 medium pinks
- 1 dark pink
- Wrap the end of the wire around the coiled loop about 1/8” down from bail, and twist it a couple of times.
- Clip the tail close to the twist and slide the first bead over it.
- Wind the end of the wire through the back to the front keeping close to the bead and repeat for two winds.
- Drop the next bead and repeat step 21. Continue until all the beads are wrapped around the coil.
- Untwist the last bead and drop it in position, then wind the wire two times then thread it back through the same bead.
- Clip the wire close.
- Use a 6mm jump ring to attach the ear wire.
- Repeat for other earring.
- Repeat for pendant.