Jewelry Making Quick Tip: Working a Clasp

Jewelry Making Quick Tip: Working a Clasp Long

Did you ever make a necklace or bracelet with a lobster clasp and then have the clasp fail and your jewelry piece fall off?

Today’s Jewelry Making Quick Tip will help you!

Video:

Working a Clasp

Text:

It’s disappointing and somewhat embarrassing, but this tip will save you that embarrassment.

When you get a bunch of lobster clasps, a few in the bunch will not work.  It’s pretty frustrating, but it almost always happens.

Before you use a lobster clasp, work it.

All I mean by that is you simply open and close it about 10 times.  If it’s not going to work, you’ll know and you can use a different clasp.  If it’s working for those 10 times, then you’re safe.

This is particularly important if you’re planning on selling jewelry.  You want to make sure that your customer doesn’t have any issues down the road.

So that’s the Jewelry Making Quick Tip for today.  I hope it saves you some frustration and embarrassment.

Quick Start Guide

Are you new to wire wrapped jewelry?

Ready to dig in and get started?

The Quick Start Guide to Wire Wrapped Jewelry will give you a solid background in wire wrapped jewelry and teach you all the important things you need to know to successfully create professional wire wrapped jewelry.

It’s completely free and you can sign up here.

Jewelry Making Quick Tip: Covering Crimp Beads with Wire

Covering crimp beads with wire

I was finishing up a bracelet that I was making with the wire beads that I showed you how to make in ECT TV Episode 80 and I realized I only had silver crimp beads.

Instead of waiting to get the right color, I decided to finish the bracelet with the silver crimp beads and come up with a solution.

Here’s what I came up with:

Covering crimp beads with wire

Here’s the full bracelet:

Covering crimp beads with wire

Do you want to make beautiful wire jewelry, but you’re not sure where to start?  Not sure what wire to choose (which hardness or what gauge to use) and there are so many tools to pick from, where do you even start?

Not to mention how people get those perfect wraps and loops and make their wire jewelry look so nice.

What if you could spend days learning everything you needed to know to get started and make your first piece of wire jewelry?

With the FREE 10 Day Quick Start Guide to Wire Wrapped Jewelry, you’ll do just that!  Sign up below and get started right away!

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ECT TV Episode 80: How to Make a Wire Bead

ECT TV Episode 80 - Wire Bead

On today’s episode of Emerging Creatively Tutorials TV (ECT TV), I have a fun and simple wire bead tutorial.

You can use this bead in your jewelry creations to give your projects a little more personality and fun.

Here’s the video:

As I mention in the video, the inspiration for these wire beads started as an art journal layout.

Here’s that art journal page:

ECT TV Episode 80 - Wire Bead

I’ve been somewhat obsessed with layering paper over a watercolor background in my art journal this year.  (I’ll share more examples of different pages tomorrow here on the blog.)

For this page, I started out by using different colors of watercolors, including a metallic color.

Then I did some doodling using a silver pen as well as a white colored pencil.

Finally the paper layering came in.  I used pieces of scrapbook paper as well as an old letter from the 1920s and an old receipt.  (The actual letter is still in tact inside the envelop and the envelop has an opening on the right side to slide the letter out.)

Going from art journal page to jewelry:

ECT TV Episode 80 - Wire Bead

When I’m using an art journal page as inspiration for jewelry, I like to make a “map” of colors, themes and other things from the art journal page.

I might make the jewelry piece based on colors or on the general feel of the art journal page or symbolism that is in the art journal page.

In this case, I mostly used the colors as inspiration for my jewelry piece:  green and the brassy metallic colors from the page.  The veining on the gemstone chips, as well as the brass color of the wire beads also gives me the feeling of an older time, which I also get from the art journal page.

When I was thinking about making this bracelet, I knew I wanted to add the brass color and I had the wire.  I could have used the wire to make some sort of wire wrapped jewelry piece using the brass wire, but I wanted the brass to be more prominent.  I also thought the messy look of the wire beads would add more interest to the bracelet and fit well with the art journal page as well.

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

This bracelet is the final result.

Maybe you see something different and most likely you would come up with something completely different for your jewelry piece.

Inspired eCourse

In Inspired eCourse I go into detail about this process.  In fact, I give you creativity activities and art journal prompts, then show you my exact process for mapping out a jewelry piece inspired by your art journal page, we sketch jewelry design ideas and I give you a jewelry tutorial each week.

Most Inspired eCourse students are inspired to design their own jewelry pieces.  You can use the jewelry project tutorial each week however you like.  You may want to make the piece exactly as I show you.  You might use it for inspiration for your own design.  You might learn a new technique to incorporate into your own design.

Find out more about Inspired eCourse and sign up now!

Step-by-Step Photo Instructions for the wire bead:

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Materials and Tools:

  • 22 gauge half-hard round wire *
  • Wire cutters
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Something small and cylindrical to wrap around.  Ideas include:  small knitting needle, small dowel rod, artist paintbrush, jump ring mandrel (that’s what I used.)

*Wire:  You really can use any wire you like.  I’ve used mostly 22 gauge wire for these beads and it works well.  You could use a thicker gauge such as 20 gauge wire, which would probably work well, but it will be more difficult to wrap.

Thinner gauges like 24 gauge will be easier to wrap, but won’t hold their shape as well.  You can experience with gauges and see how it works.  22 gauge half-hard round works well.

Step #1

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Working off the spool (do not cut any wire), hold the wire against your cylindrical object leaving about a 1 inch tail of wire.

Use that wire tail to help hold the wire while you’re wrapping.

Step #2

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Decide how long you’d like your bead.  Then wrap the wire down the mandrel to create a base of the size you’d like your bead to be.

Step #3

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Now wrap up the other direction right on top of the wraps you just made.

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Continue to wrap up and down on top of the previous wraps.  For this messy look, just wrap freestyle not trying to be neat.

Step #4

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Once your bead is the size you want, pull it off and trim the excess wire making flush cuts.

Use chain nose pliers to make sure the ends are not poking out.

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Use your wire beads just like you would any other bead.

ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead

Enjoy!

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Want a PDF of the wire bead tutorial to save and print easily?  Get it below:

(Note:  This PDF eBook is exactly what you see here on this post and in the video.  I’m offering it as an easy way for you to save and/or print the tutorial easily.)

ECT TV Episode 80:  Wire Bead PDF eBook
ECT TV Episode 80: Wire Bead PDF eBook
Get the PDF eBook version of the Wire Bead tutorial. Note: it is the same as what you see here, but in an easy to download, save and/or print version.
$3.00

3 Part Series: Getting Started with Wire Wrapped Jewelry

3 Part Series eBook

Last month I shared a 3 Part Series to help you get started with wire wrapped jewelry.

Part 1 is  about where to get wire, which is one of my most asked questions.

Part 2 is about the tools you need to get started.

And Part 3 is tutorial and we’ll actually use wire and make a pair of earrings.  (It is ECT TV Episode 77:  Wire Wrapped Chandelier Crystal Earrings)

You can find each of these 3 parts free on my website at the links above.

However, I know that a lot of you love PDFs that are easier to download and save, so I created a 20 page eBook with all the information (including the step-by-step photos and instructions for the tutorial in part 3), so you can keep it handy.

(Note:  The information in the eBook is the same as the blogposts; however, it’s in one easy-to-access place in this eBook.  You can download it and save it so you can find it to access it again and again!)

You can get the eBook by purchasing it below:

3 Part Series:  Getting Started with Wire Wrapped Jewelry PDF eBook
3 Part Series: Getting Started with Wire Wrapped Jewelry PDF eBook
Get started making wire wrapped jewelry with this 3 Part eBook. Originally it appeared on my blog for free, now you can download and save the information.
$3.00

After your purchase, you’ll receive an email with a link to download the PDF.

ECT TV Episode 78: Wire Wrapped Bead Link

ECT TV 78: Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Hi and welcome to a special episode of Emerging Creatively Tutorials TV (ECT TV)!

This is Part 2 of a 3 Part series to give you a bit of insight into how Rediscover Your Creativity & Make Jewelry eCourse works.

In the actual eCourse, you get all three parts in one week and you get many more projects, but for this I’ll be sharing a new part each week.  (These prompts are not from the eCourse itself, but it will give you an idea of what it’s like.)

Part 1:  Creativity Booster

Part 2:  Jewelry Skills Lesson (this!)

Part 3:  Jewelry Project (coming out December 28, 2016.)

In today’s video, you’ll learn a basic skill that you’ll use again and again when making wire wrapped jewelry, the wire wrapped bead link.

Here’s the video episode:


Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Step-by-Step Instructions:

These are the step-by-step photo instructions of the exact same tutorial that’s in the video.

Tools and Materials

Tools and Materials:

  • Wire *
  • Bead
  • Wire cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Bent nose pliers

*This is a basic skill that I’m teaching in this tutorial. Typically you’ll be choosing the wire based on the project. If it’s one of my projects, I’ll specifically tell you what wire to use. For practice I suggest that you use silver plated, copper or brass wire that’s 20 gauge, half-hard and round.

If you’re using an artistic wire you may find that there isn’t a hardness indicated. Most artistic wire and copper wire is similar to half-hard and will be fine.

Step #1

Bead Dangle

Cut a piece of wire. The wire should be at least 3 inches longer than the bead.

Step #2

Bead Dangle

 

Hold the wire approximately 1 ½ inches from the top in round nose pliers.

(Remember the tip where you mark your round nose pliers to keep all the wire wrapped loops in a project uniform. Line up the wire vertically with that line.)

Step #3

Bead Dangle

Bead Dangle

Wrap the top part of the wire down and around the round nose pliers to form a loop.

Step #4

Bead Dangle

Notice that the loop is off-centered, but we want it to be straight. The way I like to straighten the loop is by holding the loop in chain nose pliers.

Step #5

Bead Dangle

Now wrap the shorter wire around the long wire one time while pulling the long wire out straight.

Step #6

Bead Dangle

Bead Dangle

Wrap the short end of the wire around the long end 2 more times. You can use your fingers or bent nose (or other) pliers for this.

Step #7

Bead Dangle

Trim off any excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #8

Bead Dangle

Use your chain nose pliers to make sure the end of the wire is not poking out.

Bead Dangle

Bonus Tip:

If you find that your wraps are not close together, use your chain nose pliers to pull them close together. Sandwich the wraps between the pliers and push the pliers closed.

Step #9

Bead Dangle

Slide on your bead.

Step #10

Bead Dangle

Hold the wire in round nose pliers about ¼ inch above the bead.

Step #11

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Now you’ll be following the same steps as you did for the loop on the other side. Wrap the wire around the round nose pliers to form a loop.

Step #12

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

The loop will be off-center, so we’ll straighten it. Hold the loop in chain nose pliers.

Step #13

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Wrap the wire around one time while pulling the bead out straight.

Step #14

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Wrap 2 more times.

Step #15

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Trim off the excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #16

Wire Wrapped Bead Link

Use your chain nose pliers to make sure the end isn’t poking out.
Bead Dangle


Rediscover Your Creativity & Make Jewelry

Give me 6 weeks

and I will take you from being creatively blocked

to making creative and unique jewelry designs of your own!

Learn more about Rediscover Your Creativity & Make Jewelry eCourse.


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