Making Basic Wire Wrapped Rings
Anyone who knows me at all knows that I absolutely LOVE rings! I could go days without earrings, a necklace, or a bracelet but I will NEVER leave home without adorning my fingers.
I first learned to create rings a few years ago when Karla taught me how to make the Bling Bling Ring. At the time, I hadn’t worked with wire much and I had a lot of extra beads—particularly coin beads—that I hadn’t used. A light bulb went off in my head. I took the basic wire skills Karla had taught me and started playing with my beads. I discovered that making a ring was a lot easier than it seemed. Since then, I have found new ways to embellish and decorate my beads, as well as different ways to create the bands but I still love a simple wire wrapped ring!
Shanna Steele, Auntie’s Beads Designer
Some Helpful Hints About Making Basic Wire Wrapped Rings:
1. The beauty of this - and one of the things I love the most - is that you can use a wide variety of sizes and shapes to create these rings. When searching for a good size, try looking for a bead that measures somewhere between 14 - 22mm. You also want to make sure you are using a bead that is relatively flat.
2. You will almost always want to use a 20 gauge wire. I like Artistic Wire because it comes in very nice finishes and the silver is a non-tarnish. Plus, it is soft enough to be easy on your hands but sturdy enough to make a durable ring.
3. After you have cut your wire, you will want to run it through your hands. The warmth from your hands will straighten out kinks and make the wire easier to use.
4. When you start wrapping your wire around the mandrel, you will always want to start one size higher than your desired finish size. If, for example, you want to make a size 8 ring, start by wrapping your wire at the size 9 marker.
5. If you have a coin bead that is slightly puffed or raised, try wrapping your wire underneath the bead. This will help anchor it in place. If you have a bead that is rectangular, adding small beads on the side can help hold the bead in place while you wire wrap the band. This will ultimately keep the bead from wiggling.
6. After you have wrapped the sides, use Micro Crimper Jewelry Tool or Chain Nose Pliers to tuck the wire ends. This will keep them from snagging your clothes or poking you. Plus, it gives the ring a cleaner appearance.
Perhaps the MOST important tip I can give you, though, is to experiment, play, and have fun! Every bead will be a little different and, the more you work with wire, the more inventive and original your ring designs will be!