Simple, Pretty Wire Earrings
by Steve Smy
Antennae Wire Earrings
I've not been a jewelry maker for very long, really. In fact, it's less than a year and wire work is something even newer for me! It's all part of a therapeutic regime that I maintain.
The earrings I'm showing are my own design, entirely! I'm considering offering the design pattern for sale but anybody on the How-To_Make_Jewelry Community is now being given a chance to learn how to make them for FREE! :)
I call these Antennae Earrings. Not the best name but it IS 2 a.m. and I've not really slept for over 2 years. If any of you has a better name, I'd be delighted to hear from you :)
20-22 SWG wire (I used silver-plated copper, but the ear wires are surgical steel);
a mandrel or something that's a quarter-inch (6mm) square, a cigarette lighter (novel, eh? lol) which has an oval body (mine was really a rectangle with semi-circular ends);
flat nosed pliers,round nosed pliers and wire cutters.
ear wires - unless you're going to make them yourself
First - shape one end of your wire about the square mandrel, leaving approximately half an inch tail. Twist the tail and main wire about each other for just under a quarter-inch and snip off the tail remnant.
Second - bend the main wire 90 degrees to the twisted section. Carefully position the lighter so that the twisted wire is about in the middle. Wrap the wire tightly around the body of the lighter, so that you return to the beginning. Wind the wire around the twisted stem, so that it looks like a tight coil. Snip off the wire so that the cut end can be safely located against the stem.
Third - bend a quarter-inch of the wire around the corner of the square section diagonally opposite the twisted stem. Make sure that the cut end is snug against the wire. Leaving a slight gap from the cut end, bend the wire through 90 degrees. Form a loop using the smallest part of your round nosed pliers and snip off the wire. Make sure the loop closes properly!
Fourth - open the loop on the connector you've just made. Place the loop at the bottom of an earring finding and carefully close. Make sure that the closure is a proper fit so that it won't detach from the finding.
NOTE: You can add beads of your choice if you wish, either before making the twisted stem (remember, if you include beads before using the mandrel, you WON'T get a square!), or by adding them to the big oval before closing it by coiling the wire end round the stem.
The latter option is better, as closing the larger loop is much easier. Also, you can use a jump ring instead of making the connector, if you wish.
That's it. Well, almost! You need to make another one to get a pair! LOL.
Have fun. I'd love to hear from you, and maybe see pictures if you make any of these :)