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Lock Back Earrings

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings using WigJig jewelry tools with jewelry wire, beads and common jewelry supplies:



Do you ever have a problem with losing your earrings?  My sister always complains that she has this problem.  For this reason, I designed these earrings with a locking back.  I sent her a pair to try because I was concerned that they would be hard to put on.    She called me from the car after picking up the earrings at the Post Office.  I explained that I wanted to learn from her if they were hard to put on.  While driving, she managed to put the earrings on and explained to me that she had no problems.  In fact she liked them so much that she wore them for the next month. 

These earrings are a beginners jewelry making project and make a great present for very active people. 


Sapphire Crystal Lock Back Beaded Earrings Jewelry Making Project made on WigJig jewelry tools.       Topaz Crystal Lock Back Beaded Earrings made using WigJig jewelry tools.
Lock Back Earrings
 

        Jewelry Supplies Required:

Jewelry Tools Required:

  • 3 inches of 20G half-hard gold-filled jewelry wire
  • Two 6mm or 8mm crystal beads
  • Two 2 or 2.5 mm round gold-filled beads
  • Round Nose Pliers
  • Flush Cutter
  • Chain Nose or Bent Chain Nose Pliers
  • WigJig Cyclops or Electra jewelry tool
  • 8 metal pegs and one 5/16" Super Peg
  • Chasing Hammer
  • Anvil
  • Cup Bur or nail file
  • 30 minutes of free time

Jewelry Making Skills Required:

  • Ability to straighten jewelry wire using nylon jaw pliers jewelry tool.

  • Ability to cut jewelry wire using flush cutter jewelry tool.

  • Ability to make a loop in jewelry wire using round nose pliers or step jaw pliers jewelry tools. 

  • Ability to bend jewelry wire using bent chain nose pliers jewelry tool.

  • Use of a WigJig jewelry tool to bend jewelry wire into repeatable shapes. 

  • Ability to make an ear wire using WigJig jewelry making tools, metal pegs and Super Pegs

Step-by-step instructions for making Lock Back Earrings using jewelry wire, beads, common jewelry supplies and WigJig jewelry making tools:

Step 1:  Position eight metal pegs in the WigJig Cyclops jewelry tool as shown at right.  (Do not add the 5/16" Super Peg at this time.)  The pegs with (R) are used for the Right Earring, the pegs with (L) are used for making the left earring.  The 5/16" Super Peg is used for both left and right earrings, but will be added later.

Step 2:  Now cut and straighten a 3" piece of 1/2 hard sterling silver, gold or gold-filled jewelry wire. 

Instructions for making Lock Back Beaded Earrings step 1 showing peg pattern on WigJig jewelry making tool. 
Step 1  Peg Pattern on
WigJig Cyclops
Jewelry Tool


Step 3:  Now make a 1/2 loop in one end of the jewelry wire and place this loop over peg 1R on the Jig.  Pass the wire below peg 2R and bend it against peg 2R so that it passes to the right of peg 3R, as shown at right. 

Step 4:  Remove the jewelry wire from the WigJig jewelry making tool and add one or more beads.  One 6mm crystal bead followed by one metal 2.5mm bead works well.  Slide the beads onto the wire until they rest at the bend formed on peg 2R.

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings out of jewelry wire and beads  step 3
Step 3

Step 5:  Replace the jewelry wire and beads on the jewelry making jig, and bend the wire against peg 3R in the peg pattern on your WigJig jewelry tool as shown at right.  You must bend the wire enough to allow room to add the 5/16" Super Peg into the center hole of the WigJig Cyclops jewelry tool.

Step 6:  Insert the 5/16" Super Peg into the center hole of the Cyclops jewelry making tool.

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings made with common jewelry supplies step 5.
Step 5

Step 7:  Wrap the jewelry wire around the 5/16" Super Peg and down to the left of peg 4R.  Bend the wire against peg 4R in your jewelry making jig, approximately 30 degrees.

Step 8:  Remove the jewelry wire and beads from the jewelry making jig.

 

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings step7 made using WigJig jewelry making tools.
Step 7



Step 9:  Grasp the jewelry wire segment that formerly went between pegs 1 and 2 with your chain nose pliers and bend up so that the wire aligns with the bend in the wire made at peg 4R.  (Grasp as close to where peg 2 was as possible.)  When completed the wire and beads should appear as shown at right.

Step 10:  Now grasp the same jewelry wire segment with your round nose pliers (between the loop for peg 1 and the bend at peg 2) about 1/2 to 3/4 inch from the bend at peg 2.  Bend the loop that went over peg 1 over the round nose pliers toward the bend at peg 2.  We need a 1/2 loop here that we will use as the catch for the locking back.

Instructions for making Lock Back Beaded Earrings out of jewelry wire and beads step 9
Step 9


Step 11:  Cut the excess jewelry wire off both ends.  Cut off the loop that went over peg 1 to leave a 1/2 loop as catch and cut the wire tail about 3/16" from the bend at peg 4.  The earrings shown at right and below are the left earring.  The right earring will be a mirror image.

Topaz Crystal Lock Back Beaded Earrings made out of common jewelry making supplies.


Step 12:  Harden the rounded part of these ear rings by hammering it with a chasing hammer on an anvil.  Be certain to only hammer the rounded part of the jewelry wire and not the beads.

Step 13:  Remove the burs and any imperfections in both ends of the jewelry wire with a cup bur or nail file.

Step 14:  Repeat the above for the left earrings and you are done with this jewelry project. 

Sapphire Crystal Lock Back Earrings made with jewelry wire and beads.

 

Alternative design for making earrings:

The picture at right provides the peg pattern to complete the Lock Back Beaded Earrings jewelry project on the WigJig Delphi jewelry tool.  This picture is slightly larger than the actual size.  The steps in making the earrings will be the same as previously discussed. 

Instructions for making alternative design of Lock Back Earrings made using WigJig jewelry tools.

         

Peg Pattern
For WigJig Delphi
Jewelry Making Tool



The pictures at right show an alternative design for these Lock Back Earrings.  In this design, a loop is made so that a bead dangle can be added to the earring. 

Cobalt Lock Back Beaded Earrings made with common jewelry supplies.    Pearls Lock Back Earrings made with jewelry wire and beads.



The tools to make these earrings are the same as the basic Lock Back Earrings shown above.  The materials are 8 inches of 20G 1/2 hard wire, four 6mm beads, two or four 3mm metal beads, two head-pins, and some 22 or 24G wire to wrap the loop closed. 

The peg pattern on our WigJig jewelry tools for these earrings (shown at right) is the same as the pattern for the regular Lock Back earrings.  
 

WigJig Cyclops jewelry making tool peg pattern for Lock Back Earrings Jewelry Making Project



Step-by-step instructions for making alternative earring design using WigJig jewelry tools and common jewelry supplies:

Step 1:  Cut and make a loop in a 4" piece of 20G 1/2 hard gold-filled or sterling silver jewelry wire.  Holding the wire by the loop, straighten the wire.

Step 2:  Place the loop over peg 1R .  Orientate the wire with the loop above the jewelry wire.

Step 3:  Wrap the jewelry wire around peg 2R as shown at right.

Shaping jewelry wire on WigJig jewelry tools, Step 3 to instructions for making Lock Back Earrings
Step 3
Step 4:  Add a 6mm bead to the wire and slide it down as shown at right.  A 3mm metal bead could also be added at this point.

Lock Back Earrings Jewelry Making project step 4, shaping jewelry wire.
Step 4




Step 5:  Bend the jewelry wire against Peg 3R as shown at right.  Bend the wire far enough to allow room to place the 5/16" Super Peg in the Center hole of the jig.

Step 6:  Place the Super Peg in the center hole of the jewelry making jig. 

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings  step 5, showing shaping jewelry wire with beads.
Step 5
Step 7:  Wrap the wire around the Super Peg so that the jewelry wire is inside peg 4R

Step 8:  Bend the jewelry wire against peg 4R as shown at right. 

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings step 7 and 8 showing jewelry wire on WigJig jewelry tool.
Steps 7 & 8
Step 9:  Remove the jewelry wire from the WigJig jewelry tool and gently shape it by hand.  Cut the wire tail off 3/8" from the bend made against peg 4R.

Step 10:  Cut the initial loop off, leaving 5/8" of jewelry wire to form the hook for the Lock Back. 

Step 11:  Make a 1/2 loop in the 5/8" of jewelry wire where the initial loop was.  
 

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings made from common jewelry supplies step 11
Step 11

Step 12:  Add a 6mm bead and a 3mm metal bead to a head-pin.  With the beads held against the head of the head-pin, grasp the head-pin shaft just above your beads with your chain nose pliers.  
 
Instructions for making Lock BackEarrings step 12 showing beads on jewelry supplies.
Step 12

Step 13:  Using your round nose pliers make a loop in the jewelry wire.  To complete the loop will require repositioning the wire in the jaws of your round nose pliers after you have completed 1/2 of the loop.  When completed the head-pin and beads should appear as shown at right. 

Step 14:  Add the bead dangle you just made to the loops made on peg 2R or 2L in step 3, then close the connection by either wrapping the remainder of the head pin closed or cutting off the excess wire at the point where it overlaps.  You can find instructions for completing this connection of the bead dangle to the earrings here.

Step 15:  Cut the excess jewelry wire from the end of the earring you've just made and your lock back earrings are completed.   

Summary of jewelry making instructions:

If you want earrings that absolutely can't come off while being worn, then these lock back earring designs are for you.  These are earring designs that are unique.  Made with quality beads, these earrings can be very attractive. 

Instructions for making Lock Back Earrings step 13 showing beads added to jewelry supplies.
Step 13
 

Finished Cobalt Lock Back Beaded Earrings made with common jewelry supplies.

 

 



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