3 Basic Tools You Need to Start Wire Wrapping

3 Basic Wire Wrapping ToolsTo get started wire wrapping, you need 3 basic tools.  These are the tools you’ll always use and that you probably can’t get too far without.

Calling it 3 tools is probably not exactly correct.  You’ll need 4, but only 3 different types of tools.  You’ll need 2 chain nose pliers.  (You can use other types of pliers – either bent nose or square nose pliers in place of your second pair of chain nose, depending on your preferences.)

3 Basic Wire Wrapping ToolsWire Cutters

You use wire cutters to cut wire!  You can actually get started with a basic pair that you have around or in your toolbox; however, you’ll quickly want to get a better pair.  The pair I have pictured above are a pretty big investment, but they are so worth it.  Once I started using them I couldn’t believe I used my other ones for so long.

How to use wire cutters:

You use wire cutters to make 2 different types of cuts:  a flush cut and a pinch cut.  Depending what side of the cutters you use is the kind of cut you’ll make.

how to use wire cuttersThe flat side will make a flush cut.  In all of the tutorials I share you want to start with making sure each side has a flush cut.

how to use wire cuttersThat’s what the flush cut looks like.  It’s cut straight.

how to use wire cuttersWhen you use the other side you make a pinch cut.

(And actually, every time you cut wire off to use, one piece will have a flush cut and one will have a pinch cut.)

how to use wire cuttersThat’s what a pinch cut looks like.

How to use round nose pliersRound Nose Pliers:

Round nose pliers are used for making loops and spirals.  I use them in most, if not all, of my designs involving wire wrapping.

How to use Round Nose Pliers:

You’ll see 2 marks on my round nose pliers.  Click here for a quick tip for wire wrapping that explains those 2 marks and how I use them to make uniform loops.

How to Use Round Nose Pliers

How to use round nose pliersOne thing that I use round nose pliers for is to make spirals.  You can make spiral headpins or just incorporate spirals into your designs.

Click here for a tutorial on making spiral headpins.

Click here for the Beaded Spiral Pendant eWorkshop, or here for the Wire Wrapped Charm Pendant.

How to use round nose pliersRound nose pliers are also use to make loops.  Here I’m starting a wire wrapped loop to make a bead dangle.

How to use round nose pliersHow to Use Chain Nose PliersChain Nose Pliers:

Chain nose pliers are basically used for everything.  It’s like an extension of your hands when you’re wire wrapping, which is while you’ll want to have 2 pair.  (Or like I said, you may opt to get a second pair of pliers that are not chain nose.)

How to use chain nose pliers:

Use chain nose pliers to hold wire, wrap wire and bend and twist wire.

How to Use Chain Nose PliersHold a loop wire wrapping it.

How to Use Chain Nose PliersWhile holding the loop with one pair of pliers, wrap the wire around with another pair of pliers.  (2 things about this photo:  1) I’m holding the loop with bent nose pliers.  I’ll usually either hold the loop with the bent nose or actually do the wrapping with the bent nose while holding the loop with chain nose.  2) For the photo I was holding the chain nose pliers with my left hand, so this photo is backwards if you’re right handed.

How to Use Chain Nose PliersHere I’m making a spiral.  Once you make the original loop, you use chain nose pliers to continue the spiral.

You’ll use chain nose pliers for everything you make when wire wrapping.

Like I mentioned, you’ll actually want another pair of pliers, too.

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Ready to learn the basics of wire wrapping like making loops, making bead dangles and making wire wrapped bead links, plus how to wire wrap anything to make charms and pendants?  Check out my Wire Wrapping For Beginners book, available both as an eBook or a print book.  Click here for more information.

How to Make Interchangable Wire Wrapped Earrings

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earring TutorialsThese versatile earrings are so much fun because you can change the dangles to suite your mood and outfit.  Or if you prefer, just use some 24 gauge wire between the loops and wrap them together so that the dangles are not removable.

Some things to note:  When you wear these earrings the dangles are relatively secure, however any vigorous movements or exercise can make you lose the dangles.  I was wearing these while doing some quick and vigorous cleaning and one of the dangles fell off.  Otherwise, they will be just fine.

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earring TutorialsMaterials and Tools:

  • 20 gauge wire
  • Carved Bone Skull Beads (B7517) from Happy Mango Beads
  • Earring wires (or you can make your own)
  • Wire Cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Ring mandrel or highlighter pen
  • Paintbrush or pen
  • Hammer and Steel block or anvil

Step #1

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earring TutorialsCut off 2 pieces of 8 inch wire.

Step #2

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialWrap the wire around a ring mandrel or highlighter pen so that the ends of the wire are equal.

Step #3

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialThen twist the wire.

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialStep #4

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialHold one end of the wire with round nose pliers and start to make a bend going in towards the middle.

Step #5

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialThen use a paintbrush or pen and start to make a large spiral.

Step #6

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialUsing your round nose pliers, continue to make the spiral until you end up with how you want it to look.  Then repeat for the other side and the other wire as well.

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialInterchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialStep #7

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialUsing a nylon hammer on a steel block or anvil, lightly hammer the wire to harden and strengthen it.

Step #8

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings tutorialMake 4 spiral headpins.  Or alternatively you can use purchased headpins.

Here’s video on how to make the headpins:

Step #9

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings TutorialUsing the skull beads and the spiral headpins, make bead dangles.

For more on how to make a bead dangle, see this video:

Step #10

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings TutorialSlide the beads around the spiral and onto the earrings.

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings TutorialStep #11

Interchangeable Wire Wrapped Earrings TutorialAdd pre-made earring wires or make your own.

How to make your own earring wires:

How to Make interchangeable wire wrapped earringsThen you can make other dangles so you can change out the beads OR make them permanent by wrapping the loops on each earring together!

Enjoy!


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How to Make Spiral Earrings

Spiral Earrings TutorialI’ve been on a spirals kick lately.  Originally I was just going to make these plain spirals, but making jewelry is more fun with beads!

These beads are from Happy Mango Beads, my new favorite bead store!

Spiral Earrings TutorialMaterials and Tools:

  • Wire *
  • 2 Beads; I used 8mm round gemstones from Happy Mango Beads.
  • Wire cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • Chain nose pliers
  • Hammer (I used my nylon/rubber hammer)
  • Steel block or anvil
  • Optional:  Nylon covered pliers

*A note on wire.  I used 22 gauge wire because when I made my sample earring with 20 gauge I was having some troubles with it.  However, 20 gauge is the standard for earring wires.  If you are using 22 gauge wire, you will definitely not want to skip the hammering part to make your earrings stronger.

Step #1

Spiral Earrings TutorialCut 2 pieces of wire to 6″.  Make sure they’re even.

Also, make sure to flush cut each side with your wire cutters.  (Use the flat side of the cutters.)

Step #2

Spiral Earrings Tutorial

If it is easier for you to learn by video, I did a video on how to make a spiral headpin.  You’ll go around a could more times for this project, but you can get the general idea how to do it there.

Using round nose pliers, hold the wire.  The wire should be near the top, but not poking out through the pliers on top.  You should be able to run your figures over it.

Step #3

Spiral Earrings TutorialTwist your wrist away from yourself, forming a loop around the barrel of the pliers using your other hand.  When you’ve twisted as far as you can, open the pliers and readjust, leaving the pliers in the loop.  Complete the loop.

Spiral Earrings TutorialStep #4

Spiral Earrings TutorialHold the loop in chain nose pliers.

Step #5

Spiral Earrings TutorialPush the wire up and around the original loop.  Keep moving the loop in the chain nose pliers and wrapping the wire around the original loop.

Spiral Earrings TutorialSpiral Earrings TutorialI went around 4 times.

Spiral Earrings TutorialStep #6

Spiral Earrings TutorialSpiral Earrings TutorialUsing your chain nose pliers and bend the end of the wire so it’s straight.

Step #7

Spiral Earrings TutorialHammer just the spiral to harden it.  Do not hammer the extra wire at this time.

Step #8

Spiral Earrings TutorialSpiral Earrings Tutorial

Spiral Earrings TutorialSlide on a bead.

Just above the bead make a slight bend and then bend it back.  This will hold the bead on.

Step #9

Spiral Earrings TutorialSpiral Earrings TutorialAbout 1 1/2″ up from the bottom of the spiral, make a bend.  I bent it around my ring mandrel, but you can use anything like a pen, paintbrush, etc.

Step #10

Spiral Earrings TutorialMake a bend in the wire.  I made mine near where the bead is located.

Step #11

Spiral Earrings TutorialCut off any excess wire you may have.

Step #12

Carefully hammer the top part of the wire now to strengthen it.

Step #13

Spiral Earrings TutorialFile the end and round it out so it doesn’t snag your ears.

Step #14

Spiral Earrings TutorialEnjoy your new earrings!!

Spiral Earrings TutorialWays to Customize:

  • Use different beads.
  • Use more than just one bead (make sure to make your wire longer when starting.)
  • Make the spirals bigger or smaller.

Are you going to make them?  Let me know in the comments below!


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How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm Pendant

a Wire Wrapped Charm Pendant

Learn how to make this unique pendant, using geometric headpins and a spiral wire wrapping technique.

IMG_6505

The beautiful natural turquoise nuggets were provided by Happy Mango Beads.

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantMaterials and Tools:

  • Natural Turquoise Nugget Beads 12-16mm – 4; From Happy Mango Beads
  • 18 gauge copper wire
  • 20 gauge copper wire
  • 4 copper jump rings
  • Ring mandrel, broom handle or any other item that you have around the house to form a circle.
  • Ruler.
  • Wire cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • Chain nose pliers
  • A second pair of pliers – I used bent nose pliers.

Step #1

How to Make a wire wrapped charm pendantFirst we’ll be making geometric headpins to use in our design.  If you need some extra help, or learn better from video, click here for my video tutorial.

Cut a piece of 20 gauge wire about 3 inches long.

Step #2

How to make a wire wrapped charm pendantGrasp the wire with round nose pliers.  The end should not be sticking out of the pliers, you can run your finger over it to make sure.

Step #3

How to make a wire wrapped charm pendantTwist your wrist away from you to form a loop.  Twist your wrist as far as you can then carefully release the wire and reposition the pliers, keeping the wire on the same part of the pliers and twist again.

How to make a wire wrapped charm pendantStep #4

How to make a wire wrapped charm pendantHold the loop with chain nose pliers and bend the wire around the loop using your hand.  Keep moving the loop in the pliers as you go around.

Step #5

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantGo all the way around twice.  (Or however many times you prefer.)

Step #6

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantUsing your pliers, bend the wire to make it straight as shown.

Step #7

Repeat this 4 times to make 4 headpins.

Step #8

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantSlide one of the Happy Mango Beads Turquoise Nuggets onto the headpin you just made.

Step #9

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHold the wire just above the wire, leaving just a little bit of room.

Step #10

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantWrap the wire down and around the barrel of the pliers.  Then start a wrap around the wire.

Step #11

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantRemove from the pliers and then straighten the loop so it’s centered above the bead.

Step #12

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm Pendant

Continue wrapping in the same direction to finish the wrap.  Clip off any excess wire if necessary.

Repeat for all 4 of the turquoise nuggets.

(Note:  If you just add earring wires, these would make beautiful, simple earrings.)

Step #13

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantNext we’ll make the wire wrapped pendant that to hang those bead dangles.

Cut 6 inches of 18 gauge wire.

Step #14

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantWrap the wire around the biggest part of your ring mandrel or whatever you’re using to form your circle.  (You can make this larger or smaller, too, just adjust the length of the wire.)

Step #15

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantMake a 90 degree bend in one end of the wire.

Step #16

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantPlace the wire back on the mandrel.  Wrap the wire around the end that you bent up.

Step #17

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantWrap around once or twice to secure.

Step #18

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantWith the wire that you just wrapped, create a spiral, following steps #2 though #5.  Finish it so it’s centered in the middle of the circle, as seen.

Step #19

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantUsing chain nose pliers flatten the spiral close to the circle.

Step #20

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm Pendant

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantMake a wire wrapped loop, just like in steps #9 through #12.

Step #21

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantOpen 4 jump rings.

Step #22

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantHow to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantAttach the natural turquoise nugget dangles to the circle with the jump rings.

Step #23

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Charm PendantSlide the pendant on your favorite chain or cord and enjoy!

I put mine on a satin cord.

I love the look of the copper with the turquoise nuggets, but silver wire would be just as beautiful.

Definitely go check out Happy Mango Beads for a very unique selection of beads!

(Want some matching earrings?!  Click here!)

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

 

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

This fun pendant is another variety the wire wrapped circle pendant that I have already shown you 2 versions of.  I love working with wire, and this tutorial will teach you some basic skills you’ll need to get started.

You can find the plain Wire Wrapped  Circle Pendant here.

Or the Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Beads here.

Skills that you will learn in this tutorial:

  • Basic wire wrapping of a circle.
  • Making a bead link.
  • Making a bead dangle.

Now onto How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles:

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Necklace

Materials and Tools:

  • 24 gauge wire, about 2 1/2 feet
  • 20 gauge wire, a short piece
  • Beads.  I used 4 smaller beads and one larger bead
  • Headpins, 1 for each of the dangle beads
  • A jump ring
  • Wire cutters
  • Round nose pliers
  • 2 pairs of pliers, I used bent nose and needle nose
  • Something to wrap around – I used a ring mandrel, but you could use a highlighter or big marker or anything that’s the size you want your pendant to be.

Step #1

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Cut about 2 1/2 feet of wire.

Step #2

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Wrap the wire around your ring mandrel (or highlighter or whatever you’re using to wrap around) approximately 6 times.

Step #3

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Carefully remove the wire from the mandrel, holding the loops together so they don’t lose their shape.

On the end of the wire that is part of the loop (not the long end of the wire), I like to bent up so it’s easy to find.  Then wrap the long end of the wire around the loop wire, making sure to capture the other end in the wire.

Wrap around several times until it’s secure and you like how it looks.

Step #4

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Clip off the short end you bent up.

Hint: 

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

If at any time your circles start to loose their shape, just slide it back on your ring mandrel.

Step #5

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Grasp the wire between the barrels of round nose pliers close to the circle.  Wrap the wire toward you, around the barrel of the round nose plier, between the pliers and the pendant.

Step #6

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

This will – no doubt – create a crooked loop on the top of your pendant.  Use pliers to straighten out the loop so it’s centered on the top of the pendant.

Step #7

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Hold the loop you just made with pliers and continue wrapping the wire around the loop in the same direction that you started with your first loop.

Trim off any excess wire.

Step #8

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Now we’re going to make the bead link for the focal bead of this piece.  Cut off a piece of 20 gauge wire.  (How long depends upon your bead size.)

Make a wire wrapped loop on one end, just like you did for the pendant.  Hold the wire in round nose pliers.

Step #9

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Bend the wire towards you.

Step #10

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Wrap around one barrel of the pliers and then around the wire one time.

Step #11

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Bead Dangles

Take the wire off the pliers.  Use your pliers to straighten the loop and make sure the first wrap is straight, too.

Step #13

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Hold the loop in pliers.  Continue to wrap a few times in the same direction of your first wrap.

Step #14

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Pull the wire off the pliers and trim any excess wire.

Step #15

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Slide the bead on and repeat for the loop on the other side.  Make sure the loops are going in the same direction.

Step #16

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Now we’re going to make bead dangles to hang from that focal bead.

Slide a bead onto a headpin.

Step #17

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Begin to make a wire wrapped loop.  Wrap the head pin around the pliers and between the bead and pliers.

Do not complete a wrap!

Step #18

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Make sure your loop is straight.  Then place the bead dangle on one loop of the focal bead.

Step #19

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Then complete the wrap exactly as before.

I made 4 dangles for my pendant.

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Step #20

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Pendant with Bead Dangle

Attach the beads to the wire wrapped circle using a jump ring.

Step #21

How to Make a Wire Wrapped Circle Pendant with Beads

Put your pendant on your favorite chain or cord and it’s done!

I hope you like this tutorial!  Please leave any questions or comments below, or link to a photo of your creation!

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