Monday, May 27, 2013

Bootcamp #3: Wire Work-out

                                                                                             by Kelli Pope

Wire is SO very pliable. It is just waiting for your imagination to turn it into something.. some form, some shape, some THING.  

Today we're going to talk about making your own wire beads and a simple ring. With basic skill, practice, and a desire to create, these simple procedures can send you in as many directions as your creativity will allow you to go.   

First, the bead.  It's rustic and free-form.   For this one I started with 20" of 18ga copper wire. Start wrapping around a mandrel. Wrap as long as you want your bead.
then wrap, back down the bead, stopping short of the end.  

    And, wrap back up toward the other end.  The goal is to make it fatter in the middle, than on the ends. End near the center of the bead, and tuck in the loose end.   
 Voila!  A very simple, rustic bead, to add texture. 
           Here are the finished beads, on wire, ready to be used, and interest to a necklace, or bracelet.....or...   
 moved on to enameling...... what color it will be is a surprise yet to come! 
The other, I think will go into liver of sulphur for an antiqued copper look.  

Now, on to a simple ring. With this basic form, you can go
SO many directions.  
 Using a ring mandrel, decide what size to make.  I chose a size 8.  Wrap your chosen wire  (I used 14ga) over, under, back around and across the top. 
 Using your pliers, start a loop
 Roll it down tight against the ring you've previously formed.
 Take the wire off, and turn it upside down, and repeat the last step. I chose a smaller loop for the 2nd one, creating a larger spiral.
At this point, you can be finished, and tumble your piece for strength, or add a bead, or some additional, contrasting wire. 
 I've chosen one of my handmade, ceramic beads, to add to the larger loop. 
Using 18g antiqued copper wire,  I attached the bead.  And to tie the copper in further, and add strength and stability to the ring,  I wrapped additional wire around the silver bands. 


baymoondesign said...

Thank you for your tutorial!

surgical girl said...

great tutorial, thank you. i love the ring mandrel idea

LisaS said...

I like those beads ... will have to give it a try. Thank you!

Artisan Beads Plus said...

I love it! You made that look so easy!!! I always get a little intimidated when trying to make a ring. I have the ring mandrel, now I will just have to make the attempt once again :o)

Kelli said...

Its easy once you get the hang of it. Play with different gauges, until it feels right, and you get the look you want. My first attempt was for a special order. I made her 3 to choose from, thinking she'd go wiyh my third attempt, as I thought it was the best......she picked the first...very surprised.

stacilouise said...

nice! I like the wire beads, I should try some out.

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