by Barbara Lewis
Kelli gave such a good tutorial on how to make an S-clasp, so I thought I would follow on her heels. To start, cut 2.5" of 16 to 14 gauge wire. I use 16 gauge. I don't usually hammer the ends of my wire to get a flattened look. I narrow the ends ... it's a personal preference.
Step 1 - You can place the wire in a ring clamp or hold it in your hand. For the last 1/2" of wire, file to narrow it, rotating the wire as you go to keep the end symmetrical. Repeat for the other end.
Step 2 - Place the wire between the jaws of round nose pliers so that you just "feel" the tip of the wire protruding from between the jaws.
Step 3 - With your other hand, swing the wire around the jaw of the pliers to create a smooth loop.
Step 4 - Repeat steps 1 through 3 with the loop at the tip of the wire facing in the opposite direction as the one you just created.
Step 5 - Rest the wire on a cylinder that is approximately 10 to 12mm in diameter with the loop facing you. If you're right-handed, place your thumb on the loop to steady it. Use your left hand to swing the wire around the pen to create a loop.
Step 6 - Sew one end of the clasp closed with either 24 or 22 gauge wire.
Step 7 - (Not Shown) Rest the large curve of the clasp on a bench block and hammer to strength the clasp and to create aesthetic interest. Repeat for the other end.
Step 8 - Either leave the clasp bright and shiny or oxidize it in Black Max or other blackening solution. Remove oxidation from the highlights with a 3M sanding pad (Fine).
The finished product. You may choose to add the clasp to your jewelry before the end is sewn closed or in this case, I'll be wire wrapping a bead onto the clasp, which is also a secure attachment.
Tip: Use your crimping pliers to tuck in the ends of wire.