Easy DIY Wire-Wrap Necklace Tutorial

Updated: Nov 16, 2018



This is a great beginner project to learn basic techniques used in wire wrapping.


I originally designed this set using a 22 mm lentil-shaped focal bead but you can modify the design to use just about any shape you prefer. Try experimenting with different bead shapes and sizes. You can also try using various types of wire such as colored artistic wire.


REMEMBER:

Always use safety glasses when working with wire!




TECHNIQUES:

Wire work, stringing, attaching jump rings.


MATERIALS:


NOTE: You can use a pre-made leather or faux leather cord or you can follow the tutorial to create your own.

  • Leather or leatherette cord, 2mm, about 19 inches depending on desired length.

  • Flat focal bead - this tutorial uses a size 22mm lentil bead

  • 2 silver accent beads, 3mm hole

  • Silver toggle clasp

  • 20 gauge wire dead soft sterling silver, stainless steel, or silver artistic wire, 12 inches

  • 22 gauge wire dead soft sterling silver, stainless steel, or silver artistic wire, 12 inches

  • 2 silver or stainless steel jump rings, 7mm, 19 or 20 gauge


Tools:

  • Safety glasses

  • Ring mandrel or dowel

NOTE: You can also use a large knitting needle, large crochet hook, or other tubular item to shape the wire. The object should be about 1/2 inch in diameter. You can go larger or smaller to suite your taste.

  • Wire cutters. I like flush cutters the best because they cut the wire nice and flat.

  • Round nose pliers

  • Chain nose pliers

  • Bent nose pliers

NOTE: If you do not have all the suggested pliers, please don't stress. Use what you have. Check out this beginner jewelry making set at Amazon.



Step 1 - Wrap the Focal Bead

  • Using your flush cut pliers, cut 12 inches of the 20 gauge wire with your flush pliers.

  • Flush cut both end tips of the wire making sure that the flat side of the pliers faces away from the tips.



  • Place your focal bead on the wire leaving about 4 inches of wire (we'll call this the SHORT END) on one side and on the other side, leave 8 inches of wire (we'll call this the LONG END).

NOTE: The amount of wire left on either side depends on the size of your bead. Just make sure that one is about half the size of the other.

  • Bring the wires parallel to one another.



  • Cross the wires one over the other with the ends coming out at opposite sides.



  • Bring the LONG END over the back of the bead and cross it under the SHORT END.




Step 2 - Form Circle


  • Holding the bead firmly, twist the wires together three times using your finger tips.



  • Wrap the wire around the mandrel or dowel to create a circle at the size that you want. I used the size 2 mark on my mandrel. Don't worry about the circle being perfect, we will take care of shaping it in a later step.



  • Cross the wires and twist them together three times. This will make your loop shank.



Step 3 - Form and Wrap Top Loop


  • Cut away the excess wire from the SHORT END just above the twisted loop shank.

  • Using round nose pliers, bend the long wire towards you so that it is parallel to the wire circle at a 90 degree angle.



  • Turn pliers toward you and reposition wire at base of pliers. Wrap up and around plier to form a loop.


  • Turn pliers slightly upward and away from you then continue wrapping the wire to form a loop.



  • Using your chain nose pliers, hold the loop you just made while wrapping the wire around the twisted loop shank all the down to the wire circle.

  • Flush cut the wire and tuck the end with chain nose plier.

NOTE: Tuck the wire end inward and up so that wire does not scratch when touched.



  • Place the wire circle back onto the mandrel. Hold the wire firmly and slide it up while twisting slightly back and forth. Stop just below the size 3 mark. Gently press the wire against the mandrel to round out the circle.

  • Holding the wire firmly, gently slide the wire circle off the mandrel while twisting slightly.



  • Twist top loop so that it is perpendicular to the wire circle. This will allow you to place the pendant on the cord so that it faces forward.



Step 4 - Tighten Bead Wrap


  • Turn bead over with single wire facing you.

  • You will do this next movement twice, evenly spaced: Using flat nose pliers, slightly twist wire to the right to tighten bead wrap.



Step 5 - Wire Wrap Leather Cord


  • Using your flush cut pliers, cut 6 inches of 22 gauge wire.

  • Flush cut both end tips of the wire making sure that the flat side of the pliers faces away from the tips.

  • Using your flat nose pliers, bend the wire so that one side is 2 inches long (SHORT END) and the other is 4 inches long (LONG END).

  • Make sure the SHORT END is facing upward and is slightly to the left of the END.



  • Bend about 1 1/2 inches of the leather cord in half to form a loop.

  • Insert the cord loop into the bent wire with the short end of the wire on your left side.

  • Wrap the wire up and over. Turn loop over as you wrap to make sure coils are evenly spaced. Do this with both wire ends forming a total of 8 coils.




  • Flush cut and tuck both wire ends.

  • Thread one spacer bead, your pendant and the remaining spacer bead onto the leather cord.

  • Repeat wire wrap leather cord instructions for other end.


Step 6 - Add Toggle Clasp and Enjoy!

  • Using your bent nose pliers and chain nose pliers, attach both toggle clasp ring and catch to your cord with 7mm jump rings.

IMPORTANT! Open jump rings by twisting them apart. Please NEVER pull jump rings apart to open them.


Feel free to add variations to this design. You can also make matching earrings by following the instructions for the pendant and then adding french ear wires. If you have questions, please let us know in the comment section. Please also share your work. Enjoy! :-)



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