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Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace

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Instructions for making Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace out of jewelry wire, beads and jewelry supplies using WigJig jewelry making tools:

Wrapped Chain Necklace made with Aqua beads and jewelry wire on WigJig jewery tools.

 

 

This jewelry making project makes chain suitable for a necklace.  The technique for making the links is slightly modified from our matching bracelet to accommodate larger links. 

For beginners, we suggest that you use 20 gauge wire to make the links for this necklace. For more advanced wire workers, we suggest using 18 gauge.  Half-hard wire is preferred.

The finished links should look very similar to the links in the matching bracelet, but larger and bolder. That is why the use of larger wire is important for this jewelry making project.

 

 


 

Jewelry Supplies Required:

Jewelry Tools Required:

  • 68 inches of 18 or 20 gauge jewelry wire.  1/2 hard wire is recommended.
  • 15 inches of 22 gauge jewelry wire.  1/2 hard jewelry wire is preferred.
  • One commercial clasp. 
  • Five large beads.
  • Any WigJig jewelry making tool with one metal peg and one 3/16" Super Peg
  • Round Nose Pliers
  • Flush Cutter
  • Chain Nose or Bent Chain Nose Pliers (2 pairs)
  • Fine Step Jaw Pliers
  • Nylon Jaw Pliers
  • Ruler
  • 1 hour of free time

Jewelry Making Skills Required:

Step-by-step instructions for making Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace using WigJig jewelry tools, jewelry wire, beads and common jewelry supplies:

Step 1:  Using your nylon jaw pliers, straighten a segment of jewelry wire over 7" long while the wire is still attached to the spool.  

Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads Jewelry Making Project using Aqua Beads

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Step 2:  Using your flush cutter cut two 3 1/2" segments of straight 18 or 20 gauge jewelry wire from your spool.  Repeat this process until you have 22 segments of straight jewelry wire each 3 1/2" long.  Again, for your finished piece, 1/2 hard wire will work better than soft wire.  See how to cut jewelry wire here.

Step 3 to instructions for making Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads by shaping jewelry wire using jewelry tools.Step 3:  Using your bent chain nose pliers, grasp the wire about 1/2 inch from one end of the jewelry wire and make a 90 degree bend in the wire at that point.  Do this for all 22 segments of wire.  See how to bend jewelry wire here.  Do this for all 22 wire segments.

 

Step 4 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads by shaping jewelry wire using common jewelry tools.Step 4:  Using your round nose pliers grasp the jewelry wire at the bend, but on the shorter wire segment, and make a loop in the wire.  This is a two step process. You will first make a 180 degree bend and then will need to release your grip on the wire and re-position your round nose pliers to complete the full loop as shown at left.   After completing the loop, adjust the wire so that the loop is perfectly centered over the longer wire tail.  You can view how to make an open loop in your jewelry wire here.  Do this for all 22 segments of jewelry wire. 

Step 5 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Necklace with Beads by shaping jewelry wire using jewelry making tools.

Step 5:  Using your flush cutter (with the flat side toward the finished piece) cut the excess wire where it overlaps on the loop you just completed.  By orientating your flush cutter with the flat side toward the finished piece, you will leave the cut end of the jewelry wire as a flat or flush cut.  See the picture above-right.  Do this for all 22 wire segments. 

Step 6 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads using common jewelry supplies.
Step 6:
  Using your bent chain nose pliers, close the loop you just completed.  Do this for all 22 jewelry wire segments.  You can view how to close a loop in jewelry wire here. Step 7 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads showing peg pattern on WigJig jewerly making tools.

 

 

Step 7:  Now position one regular metal peg and one 3/16" Super Peg in your WigJig jewelry tool as shown at right.  Position the two pegs about 3/4" apart.  Place the loop from one of your jewelry wire segments on peg 1 as shown.

Step 8 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads showing jewelry wire shaped on WigJig jewelry tools.Step 8:  Using the thumb on your dominant hand push the jewelry wire around peg 2 in the pattern on your WigJig jewelry tool as shown at right.  Push with your thumb close to the peg.  Most people find it easier to hold their thumb stationary and using your non-dominant hand rotate the jewelry making jig to get the wire into the position shown.  You will probably need to push the jewelry wire beyond peg 1 slightly so that with no pressure applied to the wire it will naturally take the position shown.  Step 9 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads by using WigJig jewelry tools to shape jewelry wire.

Step 9:  Using your bent chain nose pliers, grasp the wire immediately adjacent to peg 1.  It is probably easier to grasp the wire with the pliers in your non-dominant hand and to push the wire with the thumb of your dominant hand.  Push with your thumb close to the pliers until you have a roughly 80 degree bend.  When you have Step 10 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads using jewelry wire shaped on WigJig jewelry tools.pushed the jewelry wire far enough, it will appear as shown at right.

 

Step 10:  Perform steps 7, 8 and 9 on all 22 segments of jewelry wire. 

 

After Step 10 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace using common jewelry supplies.Step 11:  Using your round nose pliers, grasp the wire at the bend in the wire you just made and make a loop in the wire.  Again this is a two step process as 1/2 way through making the loop you will need to release your grip on the wire and re-orientate your pliers so that you can complete the loop.  When you have completed this step your wire component should appear as shown at left.  Do this for only 6 segments of jewelry wire.  Each of these jewelry wire segments will be Step 12 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads by shaping jewelry wire on common jewelry making tools.the beginning link in a segment of chain. 

 

Step 12:  Now position the two loops in your jewelry wire component on your fine step jaw pliers as shown at right.  Hold the step jaw pliers in your non-dominant hand.  Push the two loops so that they are as close together as you can get them.  In the picture at right, the out of focus wire tail is pointing out of the picture at the eye of the viewer. 

Step 13 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads showing jewelry wire shaped by jewelry tools.Step 13:  Using the thumb on your dominant hand, push the jewelry wire down and around the rest of the wire component one and 1/2  times.  When you are done, the wire should appear as shown at left.  In the picture at left, the wire tail is pointing away from the viewer.  Please note that you do not want to push the wire until it is flat against the bottom of the wire component.  You want the wire tail to be slightly above the rest of the wire component so that you will have room to cut the wire.

Step 14 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace using common jewelry supplies.

Step 14:  Remove the jewelry wire from your step jaw pliers and using your flush cutter cut the wire as shown at left.  You want to cut the wire so that the end of the wire after being pushed down will not extend beyond  the side of the wire component.  By doing this, you won't have the end of the wireStep 15 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace showing shaping jewelry wire using common jewelry tools.sticking out where it can be felt, or snag on clothing. 

 

 

Step 15:  After cutting the jewelry wire re-position your wire component on the jaw of your step jaw pliers as shown at left and using your bent chain nose pliers squeeze the end of the wire flat.  When this step is completed the cut end of the wire should be completely flat and not easily felt with your fingers. 

Step 16 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace showing a jewelry wire link.

 

Step 16:  Perform steps 11, 12, 13, 14 and 15 on six segments of jewelry wire.  These six wire components will become the initial link in a chain.  As this point these six wire components should appear as shown at left.

 

 

Step 17 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace showing chain of jewelry wire links.Step 17:  Now we need to take one of our remaining jewelry wire segments (from step 10) and thread the end of the wire through the two loops in our completed link from step 16.  When this has been completed, the two connected jewelry wire components will appear as shown at right.  The initial link is on its side in the picture so that you can only see the edge of that link. 

Step 18 to instruction for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads using common jewelry supplies.

 

Step 18:  At this point you are ready to make the second loop in the new segment of jewelry wire.  This is done with your round nose pliers as described in step 11.  In the picture from step 11 shown at left, you can view how the top of the new wire component should appear after you have completed the second loop.  To complete this link in the chain, follow steps 12, 13, 14 and 15 on the new wire component.  This will complete your second link in the chain.

Step 19 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads showing a link of chain made out of common jewelry supplies.

Step 19:  Repeat step 17 and 18 to add the third link in your chain.  In making this necklace, you will need four segments of chain with three links and two segments of chain with five links.  Follow the prior steps until you have all six segments of chain in the correct lengths. 

Step 20 to instructions for making a Wire Wrapped Chain Necklace with Beads using common jewelry making supplies.

 

Step 20:  Connecting two segments of chain is done with a wrapped bead link using 20 or 22 gauge jewelry wire.  If you have one bead that is larger or unique in some way, position that bead in the center of the necklace.  Build the necklace out from the center with the center bead, connected to a three link segment of chain on either side, connected to another bead, followed by another segment of three links of chain.  The final segment of chain on either side should be connected to the rest of the necklace with a wrapped bead link.  This final segment on either side will have five links of chain.  You can view instructions on making the wrapped bead link used to connect the segments of chain starting here, or in more detail in our online book "Wire Design Basics". 

Step 21:  The final step in completing this necklace is to connnect the commercial clasp.  You can use wrapped loops to connect the clasp, or you can use a figure 8 connector.  You can view how to make a figure 8 connector out of jewelry wire here.  If you use the figure 8 connector, open one side of the figure 8 connector using your bent chain nose pliers and connect that side to the necklace chain, then close that side.  Now open the opposite side of the figure 8 connector and connect that side to your clasp, then close that side.  When you have the clasp and a catch for the clasp connected on either side of the necklace you are done.  Hold the necklace at arms length and admire. 

Summary of jewelry making instructions:

We hope that you like all of our wire wrapped chain necklace, bracelet and earrings projects. We have already had to fill orders from our family members who liked these projects and wanted their own jewelry.  Please consider making this chain using different sizes of links.  You can change the size of a link by changing the size of the Super Peg and the spacing of the regular peg in the pattern. 

We like this chain because it is strong.  Strength is a consistent theme in our jewelry making projects.  There are many ways to make jewelry wire components, for us, the best ways are the strongest. 
 

 

 

 



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