Connecting Components to make earrings
Connecting jewelry wire components to make earrings using common jewelry making tools:
Our recommendations for your first jewelry making project is to make a simple pair of earrings. Making simple earrings is as the name implies, simple. If you can make a bead dangle and you can open and close loops, you can make these simple earrings. The required jewelry supplies are two head pins, two or more beads, some jewelry wire, and a pair of ear wire findings.
For those that are unfamiliar with jewelry findings, a finding is a metal component that is pre-made and sold as a complete component. A head pin is one type of jewelry finding. Ear wire findings come as "French" style ear wires, post style ear wires, kidney shaped ear wires, ear clips and many more. You can view several styles of Ear Wire Findings here.
Jewelry Making Supplies Required:
• 18, 20 or 22 gauge jewelry making wire
• Head pin jewelry making finding
Jewelry Making Tools Required:
• Chain Nose or Bent Chain Nose Pliers
Jewelry Making Skills Required:
• Ability to make a bead dangle out of a head pin and beads using common jewelry tools.
• Ability to open and close loops in jewelry wire using chain nose pliers jewelry making tool.
• Ability to make an open jump ring connector using jewelry wire and common jewelry making tools.
• Ability to make a figure 8 connector using jewelry wire and common jewelry making tools.
Step-by-step instructions for making simple earrings using the above jewelry tools to connect jewelry wire components with purchased jewelry making findings:
Step 1: Begin by making two bead dangles using the jewelry making techniques discussed here.
Step 2: Now open the loop on your ear wire finding using the jewelry making techniques discussed here.
Step 3: Add the loop in the bead dangle to the loop in the ear wire finding and close the loop in the ear wire finding.
Step 4: Now you have a simple earring like the queen of clubs earrings shown upper right.
Step 5: Now, let's modify the simple earring by adding a jump ring, or a simple circle of wire to connect the ear wire finding to the bead dangle. You can open and close the jump ring to connect the two components. Please note the orientation of the loop in the bead dangle and the loop in the ear wire finding. They will be rotated 90 degrees to their original orientation.
Step 6: Finally, connect the ear wire finding to the bead dangle by a figure 8 connector and note that the orientation of the loop in the ear wire and the loop in the bead dangle are the same as when we directly connect the ear wire to the bead dangle. Given that the orientation is the same, is there a reason for using a figure 8 connector? The simple answer is yes, there are several reasons. The figure 8 connector adds a hinge in the ear ring that allow the bead dangle to move independently in more directions that if directly connected. The figure 8 connector also adds distance between the ear wire and the bead dangle.
Step 7: Complete this jewelry making project by making a pair of earrings using the same combination of bead dangle, ear wire, and connector (either none, a jump ring, or a figure 8 connector.)
Summary of jewelry making instructions for connecting jewelry components using common jewelry tools:
Making a pair of earrings can be a simple matter of opening the loop in a commercially made ear wire finding and connecting that loop to the loop in a purchased pendant or bead dangle then closing the loop in the ear wire finding. With these two simple steps you can make a pair of earrings. You can also modifiy this process by adding a connector between the ear wire finding and the purchased bead dangle or pendant. The connector you would use, would commonly be a jump ring finding, or a figure 8 connector. One reason for adding the additional connector between the bead dangle and the ear wire finding is the property of motion. With the extra connector, the resulting earrings that you made will move in a more interesting manner than they would without that connector. Sometimes you might want to change the natural orientation of the two components that you connect. To do this you might need a special connector like a modified figure 8 connector. In the above step-by-step instructions we described how you add a connector to a simple earring making project.