Here is another little earring tutorial that I hope you enjoy. These don't take that long to make, are pretty simple and make a wonderful pair of earrings. It's a versatile wrap because this can be done with many different types of beads, doesn't require a lot of wire and allows you some room to be creative with either side of the earring. Offering a customer a 'two sided' pair of earrings or a pendant wrapped that way, makes for a bonus reason to buy your jewelry! Plus it allows for you to enjoy both sides of the finished stones. Sometimes, it's hard for me to 'choose the front'. ;)
'Swan Earrings' - This will be the finished project. It'll take you about 20 minutes or 30 minutes. Once you get the hang of this, it'll take you way less. You can make many pair of these in a very short time.
Click any of these images to enlarge.
1. Round nose pliers
2. Flat nose
5. Two beads with holes drilled 18 or larger gauge (sometimes a visual will tell you if your wire will fit that hole).
6. Two gold filled, round, soft, 18 gauge wire, cut to 4 inches each.
1. Take the end of a wire with the round nose pliers. Get a firm grip about one quarter inch down the nose of the pliers.
2. Roll the pliers toward you as close against the wire as you can. You want as 'round' a center bend as you can get. But don't sweat it if it's not 'perfect'. That's the charm of hand made jewelry. Just try to be careful not to 'nick' the end.
3. Once you have a nice bend and center loop, gently turn the pliers to create a spiral. Once the first turn is made, it will be easier to get the flat nose pliers and continue the bend.
4. With your flat nose pliers, take the wire firmly but careful not to scratch. Hold onto the loose end close to the plier to maintain control and continue to roll the spiral (about 2 complete turns).
5. In this earring, we are leaving a small 'air space' in between the spiraled wire. This makes room for the earring hook to attach later. It also is a nice affect. In some cases, to add strength, we might have used a hammer to flatten the wire a bit, but in this case, the beads are not heavy and the wire is thicker. These will hold their shape without worry.
6. Once the spiral is complete, thread the bead. You are going to bend the spiral end 'up' to rest on the center of the bead. With your eye, gauge the appropriate distance. Normally, this is just a smidge shorter then the length of the bead. Remember, you can always tighten up that spiral a bit if you need.
7. Hold onto the bead with one hand and at the same the lose end of the wire. Take the spiral with the other hand and push it up and tight against the side of the bead. As an option, you can do this bend using the round nose plier to make the initial curve. I just find that if you can bend around the bead, it makes for a more natural line in the wire, in the part I call the 'neck' of the Swan.
8. Now here before you cut to shorten the end, keep in mind that you have some creative room. In this example, we're just going to make a simple single turn loop to close up and add a small spiral. You can optionally leave that wire longer and create a tight, larger spiral to cover the bead center if you like that look.
9. Using the round nose pliers, put a spiral into the unfinished end. Use the steps above to remember how to spiral. ;)
10. Leave a small amount of 'bending' room in the wire. Bend the spiral up and onto the bead. Do you see how this makes either side of the earrings 'wearable'? If you get the type of ear wires that allow for an open 'S' curve in the end (or you make some), then you have a 'two for one' pair of earrings.
11. Add your ear wires, rub off your finger prints and enjoy!
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