Wire Wrapping Jewelry Basics

Filed under: how to?,regular postings — Gary January 31, 2010 @ 10:07 pm

Make Wire Jewelry
What Is Wire Temper?

The temper of a wire refers to the hardness or softness of the wire. Softer wire is easier to work with and gets harder as you work with it. Wire is sold in three tempers: dead-soft, half-hard and full-hard or spring-hard.

Which kind of wire temper do I want to use?

Dead-soft wire has been heated or annealed to make it more malleable and easy to work with. It will bend and coil without difficulty. You can create your piece and work harden the wire as you go or at the end in a tumbler.

Half-hard wire is harder to work with then dead-soft, but some wire jewel makers prefer to use it. Over the years, taking classes and after reading wire books I have found that this is a personal preference. If I want my wire to be half-hard, I pull on and work harden my dead soft wire before starting the project. After time you will see what you prefer.

Full-hard(spring-hard) wire refers to wire that does not bend easily and is not generally used for wire jewelry

making. You can use this type of wire to make spring back pins.

Note: As you work with dead-soft wire, you are changing its temper and making it hard. It will go from dead-soft to full-hard.

Wire Wrapping Jewelry Basics
Wire Shape and Size

The more you know about the wire you work with, the better your projects will be. Check out some basics below.

Wire Shapes

There are four shapes of wire: round, half-round square, square and triangular. The names are accurate to the shape that the wire is when looking at its cross-section. The most popular of these shapes is the round wire, although some artists prefer working with the other shapes more often.

Wire Sizes

Wire is sized by its thickness. Popular wire gauges are 14-guage to 26-guage. The thicker the wire the smaller the gauge number. 14-gauge wire is thicker than 16-gauge wire and 26-gauge wire is thin. In other places than the U.S. wire is sold in diameters measured in millimeters. The chart below gives you a gauge to diameter(approx) conversion. Popular wire sizes are 18-gauge to 22-gauge.

Beaded Jewelry Making
Free Projects and Patterns

Making beaded jewelry and other types of beading projects is such a fulfilling and fun craft. Beauty, history and heritage can be found in beading and beads – it’s very intriguing. This section of my site has gotten quite big with many free bead patterns and projects to share. To the left you will find a list of the types of bead projects, including different topics like holidays or prom patterns. There are also ever growing beginner and basic beading instructions to be found there. Below you will find a bead projects and patterns index by name with all types of beaded jewelry projects listed. I hope this helps you, my site visitor, with navigation. I also hope it helps me keep all of the beady things I offer here straight, lol! Enjoy ~ Denise

Newest Beaded Jewelry Projects:
5 Beaded Angels to Make
I’m sharing these in a bead swap and I thought I would share how I put together some of the beaded angels with everyone. Enjoy!

All Beaded Jewelry Projects:

Hundreds of projects! Read on…

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