ECT TV Episode 71: Introduction to Making Earrings

Intro to Making Earrings

Today I have a special edition of Emerging Creatively Tutorials TV (ECT TV)!  Introduction to Making Earrings!

In this episode you’ll learn everything you need to know to get started with making earrings plus a simple earring tutorial.

Watch the video:

 

Wire:

The generally accepted gauge of wire for making earring wires is 20 gauge.  Since you’re making your own earrings if that feels too thick for you you can always try 22 gauge and experiment so that you feel comfortable.

You may use other wire when creating earrings that are other gauges as well.

Metal:

If you have sensitivity to metal in your ears, for your earring wires you may need to use sterling silver.  (You probably want to practice making earrings wires with less expensive wire before switching over to sterling silver.)

If you don’t have any allergies to metal, you probably can use any wire.

Alternatively, you can simply purchase earring wires at your favorite supply store.  Again, if you have metal allergies, look for sterling silver or you may be able to use surgical steal earring wires.

Beads:

The main concern when you’re making earrings is the weight of the earrings.  You don’t want anything too heavy that will pull on your ears and be uncomfortable.

If you’re making earrings for yourself, you can make them as heavy as you like, but still be careful not to make them too heavy.

If you’re making earrings for someone else, make them as light as you can.

That being said, using large heavy beads isn’t the best idea for earrings, but use your own judgment.  That goes for anything else that you might add to your earrings.

Simple Earrings Tutorial

Next I’ll show you how to make a simple pair of earrings.  First you’ll find a step-by-step tutorial to make your own earring wires.  They’re pretty simple to make, but you don’t have to make your own earring wires. You can buy they already made at a jewelry supply store.

Earring Wires

Tools and Materials:

  • 20 gauge half-hard, round wire
  • Wire cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Sharpie or other marker to bend around
  • Jewelry file
  • Rawhide, nylon or hard plastic hammer and steel block (optional)

Step #1

Earring Wires

Cut 2 pieces of wire approximately 3 inches long.  It doesn’t matter exactly how long they are, just that they are exactly the same length.

Step #2

Earring Wires

Flush cut both ends of each wire.  To make a flush cut use the back of most wire cutters toward the work (or what you’re leaving behind.)

Step #3

Earring Wires

Now we’ll make a loop on one end of the wires.  You learned how to make a loop in the “3 Tips” as well. Hold the wire in round nose pliers. The wire should be at the top of the pliers, but not poking through.  Use the tip of your round nose pliers because we just want to make a small loop.

Step #4

Earring Wires

Earring Wires

Twist your wrist away from you while wrapping the wire around pliers.  When you have twisted as far as your wrist will allow, readjust the wire and pliers and complete the loop.  Repeat for the other wire.

Step #5

Earring Wires

Bend the wires around a Sharpie or other pen or marker to form a hook.  I find it helpful to do both wires at one time so they’re the same.

The end with the loop will be shorter than the other end.

Step #6

Earring Wires

Earring Wires

Earring Wires

Use chain nose pliers to make a bend in the wires approximately at the same spot as the loop on the other side of the hook.

Step #7

Earring Wires

Trim off any excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #8

Earring Wires

Use a file or burr cup to file the end of the wire so it’s not sharp but rounded.

Step #9

Earring Wires

Harden the earring wire with a nylon, rawhide or hard plastic hammer.  This step isn’t absolutely necessary, but will make your earring wires sturdier.

Earring Wires

Now we’ll make a bead dangle to place on the earring wires to make a simple pair of earrings.

Simple Earrings

Simple Earrings

Tools and Materials:

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

Step #1

Simple Earrings

Slide a bead onto a headpin.

Hint:  Check to see if your bead will stay on the headpin or if the stopper on the headpin is smaller than the hole in your bead.  If it slides off, you can either add a smaller bead like a seed bead first and then your larger bead or make your own decorative headpin that will hold the bead on.

(You can find free tutorials on my website for decorative headpins such as knotted headpins or spiral headpins.)

Step #2

Simple Earrings

Hold the headpin approximately ¼ inch above the bead in round nose pliers.

Step #3

Simple Earrings

Wrap the headpin around your round nose pliers to form a loop.

Step #4

Simple Earrings

Simple Earrings

Simple Earrings

Simple Earrings

The loop will be off-center.  To center it hold the loop in chain nose pliers and wrap around one time while pulling the bead out straight.

Step #5

Simple Earrings

Simple Earrings

Make 2 additional wraps keeping them close together and straight.

Step #6

Simple Earrings

Trim off any excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #7

Simple Earrings

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

Repeat to make a second matching bead dangle.

Step #8

Simple Earrings

Open an earring wire.

Step #9

Simple Earrings

Place the bead dangle in the loop and close it.

Simple Earrings


Ways to customize these simple earrings:

 

Dangle Earrings

Add extra bead dangles to your earring wires.

Paper Bead Earrings

Use fun beads!  (These are paper beads.)

How to Make Dangle Earrings

Add more than one bead on the headpin.  I stacked disc beads for this pair of earrings.

How to Make Spiral and Gemstone Chip Earrings

These earrings have several gemstone beads and use spiral headpins, but it’s the same basic technique.

Layered Wire Wrapped Earrings

For these earrings, I used spiral headpins and then added a couple charms to the earring wires as well.


Earrings are a quick way to express yourself and your creativity.

  • They don’t take a lot of time to make.
  • You can express your creativity when you’re actually making them.
  • Plus, they have the bonus feature that you can express your creativity when you’re wearing your one-of-a-kind creations as well.
  • (Plus the bragging rights and confidence building of “Oh, you love these?  I made them!”)

Join in for Earrings Every Day Month this September and get an inspirational email from me every single day of September to remind you to make your earrings for the day.  Plus I’ll send you links to my free earring tutorials from my blog along the way as well.

Or upgrade to Earrings eCourse and get a new earring tutorial every single day for all 30 days!  (Not the free tutorials from my blog, but new tutorials just for Earrings eCourse.)

Earrings Every Day Month


Intro to Making Earrings

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  • PLUS – a checklist of tools and materials you’ll need to make earrings so you can easily print it and check it off!
  • PLUS – a list of my favorite resources for materials and tools!

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Introduction to Making Earrings

Jewelry Making Quick Tip: How to Use Wire Cutters

Using Wire Cutters

Have you ever had the problem that your cuts are always pointy?

You’re not alone because I get this question a lot.

The answer is so simple.

Watch the video:

Learn everything you need to know to get started making wire wrapped jewelry with my FREE Intro to Wire Wrapping eCourse!

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New eWorkshop! Decorative Bead Dangle Bracelet

Decorative Bead Dangle eWorkshop

I have a brand new eWorkshop!  The Decorative Bead Dangle Bracelet eWorkshop.

You’ll learn how to make a fun decorative bead dangle and then put them together to make a unique bracelet.

This workshop is great for building your confidence in your wire wrapping abilities because you’ll be repeating the process over and over again with the bead dangles.

IMG_7665

What’s an eWorkshop?

It’s a workshop that takes place completely online.

You get a video and a PDF eBook with step-by-step photos and instructions.

Ask me any questions along the way.

It’s like an in person workshop, but better because you can take it any time you like in your own home.

Express your creativity and have fun building your wire wrapping skills with this new eWorkhop.

Available now at the early bird pricing for a limited time.

Click here to purchase.

Decorative Bead Dangle eWorkshop

Gemstone Nugget Pendant

Gemstone Nugget Pendant Tutorial

Make this quick and simple pendant, add it to a cord or chain and you have a beautiful necklace.

I like to make my chain long for an easy, flowing look.  You can use a shorter chain to really show off the pendant more.

You may remember this technique from the Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace Tutorial that I shared previously.  If you’re looking for more of a challenge or a bigger project, check that out.

Gemstone Nugget Pendant Tutorial

Tools and Materials:

Step #1

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Cut approximately 10 inches of wire.

If you use the same gemstone nuggets I linked to above, you will need about 10 inches.  The length will vary if you use a different size than I did.

Step #2

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Hold the wire in round nose pliers about 1 1/2 inches from the top.

Step #3

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Wrap the short end around one barrel of round nose pliers.

Step #4

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Take the wire off your round nose pliers.  Hold the loop in chain nose pliers.

Step #5

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

The loop will be off-center at this point and we want to center it.  To do this I wrap the short end of the wire around the longer one and at the same time pull the longer wire out straight, which centers the loop.

Step #6

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Wrap the wire around two more times.  Keep your wraps straight and close together.

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Hint:  If your wraps are not close, use chain nose pliers to pull them close to each other.

Step #7

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Trim off the excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #8

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Using chain nose pliers, push in the end to make sure it’s not poking out.

Step #9

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Slide a large quartz nugget gemstone onto the wire.

Step #10

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Pull the wire back up across the bead.

We’ll just have wire on one side of the bead, so choose which side you would like to have as the front.

Step #11

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Wrap the wire around the previous wraps you made a few times.

Step #12

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Chunky Rose Quartz Necklace

Trim off the excess wire making a flush cut and make sure the end is not poking out.

Gemstone Nugget Pendant Tutorial

Simply slide this onto a cord or chain of your choice and you have a necklace!

Hint:  Use your chain nose pliers to position the loop on top so that the pendant hangs correctly on the the chain or cord.

Alternatively, you could use a jump ring to attach the pendant to a chain, which is what I did.  You can either attach a jump ring and slide the jump ring over the chain or attach it with the jump ring to a link in the chain.

Have fun and be creative!

Intro to Wire Wrapping

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ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet Tutorial

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Today I have a quick and simple anklet tutorial for you today!

Yesterday I shared my process from inspiration to final jewelry piece for this anklet, but today I have the step-by-step tutorial for how to make this piece.

In this tutorial you’ll learn:

  • How to make a wire wrapped bead link with multiple beads;
  • How to open and close jump rings; and
  • How to put it all together to make a sweet anklet.

Here’s today’s Emerging Creatively Tutorials TV (ECT TV) video:

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Step-by- Step Photo Instructions:

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

Tools and Materials:

  • Beads – you can use any beads you like, but I choose 3 different beads that are 3 different colors to go along with my inspiration.  My beads are all recycled glass beads.
  • Chain – use any chain you like.  I have a collection of smaller pieces of chain leftover from other projects that I used for this project
  • Jump rings – I used 7mm jump rings, but feel free to use any sturdy jump rings you like
  • 20 gauge, half-hard wire
  • Lobster clasp
  • Wire cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Bent nose pliers

Step #1

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

I used a few beads on each strand.  I’ll show you how to make 1 strand and then you just repeat the process for each strand.

Alternatively, you could just make one strand.

Cut a piece of wire approximately 3 inches longer than the beads for one strand.

Hold the wire 1 1/2 inches from the top in round nose pliers.

Step #2

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Wrap the wire down and around the pliers to form a loop.

Step #3

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

The loop will be off-center, so we need to center it.  Hold the loop in chain nose pliers. Wrap the short wire around the long wire once while pulling out the long wire straight.

Step #4

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Wrap the wire around 2 more times.  You can use bent nose pliers to help you wrap.  Make sure that you’re wraps are close together and neat.

Step #5

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Trim off the excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #6

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

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

Step #7

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Slide your beads onto the wire.

Step #8

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Hold the wire in round nose pliers about 1/4 inch above the beads.

Step #9

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Now we’ll make a wire wrapped loop on this side just like we did at the beginning.

Wrap the wire around the round nose pliers to form a loop.

Step #10

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Hold the loop in chain nose pliers. Wrap the wire around 1 time while pulling the beads out straight to straighten the loop.

Step #11

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Make 2 more wraps keeping your wraps straight and neat.

Step #12

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Trim off the excess wire making a flush cut.

Step #13

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

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

Step #14

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Repeat for all 3 strands with your different sets of beads.

Step #15

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Figure out how long you need your chain to be.  Measure your ankle and then measure the bead link and clasp.  Subtract the length of the bead link and clasp from the total length you need and that’s how long your chain needs to be.

You will need to do this for each bead link unless you’ve made each bead link exactly the same length.

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Keep each chain with the corresponding bead link so you don’t mix them up.

Step #16

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Cut the chain in half. Attach one half of the chain to each end of the bead link.

Step #17

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Repeat for each strand.

Step #18

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Attach one end of all of the chains to a jump ring and place the clasp on it as well.

Step #19

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

On the other end place all the chains in a jump ring and then add a couple of additional jump rings.

ECT TV Episode 69: Bead and Chain Anklet

Customize this anklet:

  • Use any beads you like – mix them up like I did or use just one type of bead.
  • You can mix up the beads in the individual strands as well.
  • Make just 1 strand.
  • Use just 1 bead per strand or make the wire wrapped bead links longer.  If you make them longer you may need to curve the wire to fit with the curve of your ankle.