Wire Types and Uses for Jewelry Making [Video & PDF]

Wire Types & Uses

Learn about wire types and uses in this video and PDF worksheet below.



Gauge is the thickness of wire. Remember: the higher the number, the thinner the wire.

You’ll see gauge often notated with “ga” after the number, i.e. 18 ga.

Wire gauge

Wire Shapes

Wire Shape

Wire Hardness

You can find wire in the following hardness:
• Dead soft
• Half-hard
• Hard

Most of the time I suggest half-hard for my tutorials and in my eCourses for wire wrapping.

If you’re using sterling silver and some other types of wire, you will find a hardness notated. However, for a lot of craft wires or artist wires you will not. I use Parawire, which is silver plated wire, and there is not a hardness indicated. Often these wires are very similar to half-hard wire.

Memory Wire

Memory wire is great for bangles or loops; however, it is not for wire wrapping. Also you’ll need heavy duty wire cutters to cut memory wire.

What I use the most:

For most everything I make and teach I use 20 gauge, half-hard round wire. For clasps I’ll use 18 or even 16 gauge wire. Occasionally I’ll use 22 or 24 gauge for wrapping onto a structural piece or with beads with smaller holes.

Get a PDF eBook with this information right here:  Wire Types and Uses Worksheet

Wire Wrapping for Beginners

Now that you know wire types and uses, why not put them to use?

Take my Wire Wrapping for Beginners eCourse and learn how to make jewelry components like headpins, jump rings, chain and clasps and then get the “recipes” to put together the components to make earrings, bracelets, charm bracelets, necklaces and wire wrapped rings!

Learn more and sign up here:  Wire Wrapping for Beginners

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