Jewelry Making Tip of the week:
During the past week, I received several e-mails from people who were having problems making consistent wrapped loops. This is an important skill for making many of the jewelry pieces shown in WigJig University both in the wrapped bead link shown at right and in making a bead dangle on a head-pin. Basic instructions for making this link using beads, jewelry wire and common jewelry tools can be found by selecting here. The following paragraphs provide a few tips that I hope will help those who aren't satisfied with their wrapped loops.
1. 22G or 24G wire are easier to use in making wrapped loops than 18G or 20G. In addition, while you should practice this skill with inexpensive copper wire, you will find that soft wire, like copper practice wire, is harder to use in making wrapped loops.
2. When you are trying to perfect this technique, use larger loops. It is easier to be successful when making a wrapped loop when the loop is larger.
3. Try to keep the wire tail that you are wrapping perpendicular to the wire inside the bead as you wrap. When the wire gets at an angle to the wire inside the bead, you will notice gaps between the wraps.
4. When wrapping, it is best to hold the loop that you make with chain nose or bent chain nose pliers while you wrap the wire. This helps to retain the shape of the loop (keeps it from distorting out of round) and helps to stabilize the piece as you wrap.
5. As you are learning this skill allow yourself more wire in the wire tail that you wrap around the wire segment inside the bead. Instead of starting with a bend 1 inch from the end, make the initial bend 1 1/4 or 1 1/2 inch from the end of the wire. This will mean that you cut off more excess wire, but while you are perfecting this skill, you will find it easier if you have a little more wire to work with.
6. One final thing to try is to push the wire tail that you are wrapping close to the wire you are wrapping around. This may make it easier to control the wrap and help to keep the wire perpendicular.
I hope some of these tips will help.