Make Your Own Jewelry: How To Make A Wirework Necklace | Jennifer and Kitty O'Neil | Skillshare

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Make Your Own Jewelry: How To Make A Wirework Necklace

teacher avatar Jennifer and Kitty O'Neil, Running With Sisters: Come Craft With Us!

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

7 Lessons (21m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. What You'll Need

    • 3. Design Inspiration

    • 4. Getting Started: Making Wrapped Loops

    • 5. Adding Turquoise Beads

    • 6. Attaching The Clasp

    • 7. Finished Necklace

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About This Class

Making your own jewelry is a great craft. You get to do something creative, and when you're done, you have jewelry! It can also be a wonderful craft to share as gifts and even sell.


This wirework necklace is made of beaded components linked together with wrapped loops. Want to know a secret? It is easier than it looks! Once you learn to make a wrapped loop, you just repeat the process over and over to make the necklace. It's all wrapped loops! And putting the clasp on a wirework necklace couldn't be easier. You just slide it into the end of a link. We'll show you how.

We'll also show you how we decide what beads to use for a necklace like this and how we take design inspiration from other pieces of jewelry we see. Plus we'll show you a tip the pros use to make all their wrapped loops the same size.

Making jewelry is so fun and once you learn this wirework technique, you can make all kinds of necklaces and bracelets too!

And remember, while you are working on your wirework necklace, we are right here to help! Just leave us a comment and we'll reply!


Jennifer & Kitty

Meet Your Teacher

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Jennifer and Kitty O'Neil

Running With Sisters: Come Craft With Us!



We're the O'Neil Sisters! Kitty's on the left and Jennifer is on the right. We really are sisters and we live about 40 minutes from each other in the San Francisco Bay area.

We started working together over ten years ago when we wrote our first book Decorating With Funky Shui. Since then we've authored five more craft books and our craft projects have been featured in Woman's World magazine, Create and Decorate, Craft Ideas, and Bead Unique. Our work has been featured online on the sites of HGTV, Better Homes and Gardens, Ladies Homes Journal, and Parents magazine.

We do all kinds of craft how-tos. We love to mosaic, we enjoy candle making, and spa crafts are always fun. But our favorite craft is jewelry making, because the materials are so beautiful and when ... See full profile

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1. Introduction: ah e. Hi. I'm Kitty and I'm Jennifer. Were there nail sisters, and we're gonna show you how to make a wire work necklace. This necklace is like a beaded chain, but it's made entirely with rapt loops, and we're gonna show you how to make wrapped loops. And we'll also show you how to add beads to your wire, how to make components out of them, how to link those components together in the chain. And then how to put on the class. Remember, when you get started making her own wire work necklace have come across any questions? Just leave us a comment and we'll reply. We're here to help. Let's get started. 2. What You'll Need: for materials. You'll need jewelry, wire and this wire says right on it. Ideal for wire wrapping. And that's what we're doing. So this is the right kind of wire. We're recommending that you get maybe a 24 gauge. You could do 22 or 26 but you want engage that is thinner, and that's 24. That's thinner, and it lets you wrap pretty easily this a good size for doing wire wrapping. We chose gold color to go with our beads, and we just got this at the craft store for beads. We selected three different types of beads just by going to the craft store and starting with picking out kind of a focal bead or main bead. And then, from there we pick Cem accent beads. So we have three different types that we're going to use for a necklace and different sizes . And then we picked out a class this a taco class, and we just picked a metal color that matches our wire for tools. You need round nose pliers and wire cutters, and then you're also going to need a tape measure and a Sharpie, and we'll show you what that's for. Later 3. Design Inspiration: The first thing we want to do is talk about our overall design, and we think it's helpful to look at the design of other wire work necklaces to get some inspiration. So these are all wire work, and that means that there is a bead or a couple beads on a piece of wire with rapt loops at the end. And then the components are connected together to make kind of a beaded chain. And this 1st 1 that we're looking at this one is all done with the same bead repeated over and over. When bead per component. That's nice. It's simple, kind of elegant. This next one is done with two different kinds of beads, and they alternate because oval, Rondell Oval, Rondell and this is also very elegant. It's pretty that it's all the same color, but with altering shapes. The 3rd 1 is a lot like the 1st 1 but it has these nice little crystals, so there's three beats per component, the large feed with one crystal on each side of the bead. I like how this adds some shine in a sampling. Pretty, that's pretty. This last necklace has a couple things going on toward the back of the necklace toward the class. But these are all the same component repeated over and over. Then, as we come around toward the front of the necklace, the components change a little bit. And I think we'll take inspiration from that with the beads that we found, starting with our focal beads. What we can do is put those toward the front and then maybe do these sort of toward the back. Yeah, I like that idea. And then we can use thes peachy little crystals like these crystals on this necklace, we can put one PCI crystal and each side of the focal bead and maybe even one on each side of the turquoise speed, so I like that idea. 4. Getting Started: Making Wrapped Loops: we're ready to get started. So the first thing we're gonna do is cut the beads off their temporary strings. Yes. We have some cups here to hold our crystals. Cut it down this end, these air just temporarily struck. They're not meant to stay on those little pieces. It's kind of like fishing a lot in that they're on without having to fly all over the place that they are beautiful. And now we're ready to get started with our wrapped loops and this whole necklaces made up of wrapped loops, every component has wrapped up. So the first thing I want to do is cut a three inch piece of wire and you have the exact about the size of this. But you're gonna be using three inch segments over and over again. And it's good to have a little bit of that extra wire. Both ends. Now we're gonna make grab loops. But before we get started, we're going to shake it. The trick now with a Sharpie trick. The Sharpie trick is that you want to make a line on both jaws around those players, and that's going to be your mark for where you want to make all of your loops and that we all your looks will be the same size. If you migrate up and down on the players, they get narrow at the tip and wider at the bottom. You'll have some loops that are tiny and some that are fatter. It just won't look as nice on the necklace. It looks better. They're all the same size we like to do. It makes it look kind of more profession ists. And don't worry about marking up your around those players. You can remove the Sharpie mark if you ever need to. If you want to do different size loops, you can remember it with a little now polish remover. All right, so now we're ready to get started. So we've got our three inch piece of wire that we've already cut. And what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna grab at the mark that we just made. I'm gonna grab about an inch and 1/2 down on our wire and I'm gonna start the wrapped loop by pulling the wire 90 degrees toward May see, are the United Re Bend. Now I'm going to take the players and I'm gonna reposition them said that they're holding the top part of that little bend again. I'm still at the mark that we made and I'm gonna take my the tale of my wire here and pull it around the top jaw to make the first half of my loop Now had a reposition the pliers so that the bottom jaws in the loop at the mark at the mark. That's key. And I'm gonna pull that wire, Continue pulling it around the bottom one wants to come with it to make a nice of circle there. Nice loop, and you can see those lines are perpendicular. I'm gonna take my wire. Now, take the players. I'm gonna grab across the loop just like that, take the tail and pull it around the neck two times. So that's that same short piece that went around to make the loop. The tale of that peace is the one that you're gonna wrap around two times to make your wrapped loop. And now I'm gonna take my wire cutters and the wire cutters have a flush side and appointed side. It's like be shipped. Yes, exactly. I'm gonna use the flush side against my work, and that's gonna give me a nice straight cut in that appointee cut. It's important. And then I'm gonna straighten out my loop a little. Bix, I got a little bit here. Do you want the loop to be right at the top of your raps? Yes. And actually took That will lend. You can always If you If you trim the wire and a little pieces sticking out, you can use your roundness players and just push that in a little bit. Wish you back down. Yeah. So there's your first wrap. That looks fantastic. Great. Yeah. Now we're ready to do it on RV. You will see many of these. Yes, you practice them. So we're gonna put on this but one of those crystal first. Good. Because our design was is a crystal on each side of each beat. And we're gonna do that focal beads at the bottom part of the necklace. So we've got that in that and then, um but I did the other little PCI crystal on this end. Looks so good. I love it. All right, now we're gonna make another wrapped live, so we're gonna repeat what we just did I'm gonna grab the wire right above that, That be there and what I'm doing with this hand this finger is sort of pushing the wrapped loop against the beads. So it's nice and tight. Yes, someone grabbed the wire at my mark, make a 90 degree bend, reposition. My players said that it's sort of holding the top part of that 90 degree bend. Pull the wire around the top jaw, part of part of loop. And she's hitting that mark. It's time exactly, and I'm repositioning to the bottom jaw and then finishing that loop. Now I'm gonna grab the wire, the loop. I mean across just like that with the players. And I'm gonna pull the tail around two times. And I might actually work with a slightly longer piece of wire for this next set of components so short that felt a little short. And it really helps tohave a little wiggle room with the wire when you're doing why don't don't skimp on using IR. It's inexpensive, and it's easier to use longer piece of wire to do your wire after that's right. Now I'm gonna sniff that out. There we go, and that's our first component looks great. It's now ready to make the second component. And again we cut a piece of wire about three inches a little bit longer. I think this time, because our beads are a little fat on where we go a little bit longer. There's our peace. And here's our component. We'll leave that there, and we're gonna make another rap loop to start the next component. But this one, we're gonna make the loop and not the wraps yet. So we're going to start by bending the wire 90 degrees, repositioning our pliers on the mark on the mark. Good point. Pull the wire around the top jaw to make a partial loop. Then we're gonna pull the wire around to finish the loop. But we're not gonna close the loop yet. This is key, So don't do the reps here because you need to attach this component to the previous component. So here's our previous component. Doesn't matter which side we're gonna just feed that on or a loop. You just bypass where the two wires criss crossed. You just go past that and invest that previous loop into the new loop. Now I'm going to do what I did before, which is grab across the loop with my round nose pliers. That's the look she just made on the new component. Exactly. And then I'm gonna pull the tail around two times, just like we did before to close the lip. So it's really the same wrapped Lupus before, But halfway through, you attach it to the previous compartment. That's the only trick. And now I'm going to trim the wire Pretty close, but not so close that I cut my neck. They're here into your project. So now we have part of the next component attached, and we're gonna feed on R B. It's like we did before. So we're gonna do the PCI crystal, and we've got three of the square focal beads and four of the round ones. So the next one will be around one. OK, good. So there's or PCI. Krystal. Yes. Grab around one feed that on the end here, just like that. Then let another PCI crystal. I love this already. The colors are so excited. Mermaid color. It's like you have to give it up like a mermaid name way. So now we're gonna do what we did before When we finished the second loop on our first component, I'm gonna pull this tight up against a sloops of beads or nice and tight. I don't want extra space in there. They'll move around. They will And you don't have. It looks icky. So now we've got our pliers. We're gonna grab right above that bead at the mark on Do just what we did before then the wire, 90 degrees, reposition the pliers, pull the wire around the top jaw, reposition the players again. And this time we'll finish the loof, grab across the loop and close the loop to make it wraps. So this component, we start with an open loop attached to the project and finished with the closed loop. That'll give us a place to attach the next component. Exactly. So now I'm gonna trim and we can get started again. I want to use the flush side of my cutters and actually got a little bit of a long neck here. I'm gonna show you how to straighten that out cut this year, and there we go. So I got a little bit of space there between my loops. I didn't get him super tight. That's totally flexible. Take your pliers and just sort of press the wires together. So those do needs loops. You can kind of push him down against the be here we got that. Looks better already. Yes. And now we're ready to start our next components. We're just gonna make all the components that use the focal beads and will be ready to do the turquoise beads. 5. Adding Turquoise Beads: we've got all our focal beads done and made into components. They're all connected here. This will be the center of the necklace, and you can see we've got each component has the focal bead with the crystal on each side. And now we just need Teoh add in the turquoise beads that's gonna extend the necklace up around. So to do that, we're going to do what we did before we just start by cutting about a little over three inch piece of wire and then we're gonna start by making a partial wrapped Lewis. So I'm gonna come down about an inch and 1/2 then the wire, 90 degrees, just like we did before. Reposition the pliers, pull the wire around and then finish the loop. But we're not gonna wrap the loop yet. We're just finished the loop like we did when we were adding or other components, because this component needs to be attached to our previous work. So we're gonna attach it just like that nestle that end to our new little loop partial lives that we have there now I'm gonna whip sprang from toe use, snips. I'm gonna use my round nose pliers to grab that loop across and then pull the tail around two tax two times, just like before to get really good at making wrapped loops. When you make a few of these necklaces because it's a lot of practice track, this is what makes perfect, right. That's right. Yeah. So this way here. So now that's attached, and we're ready to add on our beads. So this is a new component. This was gonna be a little bit different. This one is the same PCI crystal I confined where my with the whole lose. That's always the hardest part. And then this pretty little awkward turquoise mermaid pearl, these really pretty. It's got, like, a bee finish that's got oil slick, kind of shiny finding government service. And then one more pearl, not a peach PCI Chris staging Rest all on these colors. Just so pretty. They are summary eloping together. Yeah, so there we go. So now we're gonna finish our component by making our second raft. Luke gets just like we did before grabbing the wire. My degrees rotate and reposition on the mark on the mark. Pull the wire. Round two, make a partial loop Yep. Grab onto the loop with our bottom jaw. Pull the wire around. And now I'm gonna grab that across the loop in a minute. Raft the loop two times. So again, the beginning part of the component, you make the loop and attach it. Then do the raps. The second part of the component you make a complete raft said that you have something to attach your next component to exactly now trim. So we're just gonna keep going in this way at adding these components to both sides of the necklace? 6. Attaching The Clasp: So we've added more of the turquoise components to our necklace, and we have six more on each side of the necklace. It's looking really nice, isn't it? Super. And it's getting close to being long enough. So we got over tape measure and measured the length, and we want to stop short of how long we want the necklace to be, because we still need to add the class. So we're out about. It's like 17. Read about 17 inches, and that means that we have room to add the class. And that includes adding to Mawr components because the last component on each side is going to include the class. This is important. So we're going to do what we've been doing all along. Cut our wire about 3.5 inches long, and we're going to dio a partial loop here, just like we did when we were added our last component. Yes, so we're gonna make a 90 degree angle, rotate the players and then pull the wire around the top jaw, reposition the pliers to the bottom jaw, hold the loop around. But we're not gonna close this loop yet because we want Teoh add on our Nicklaus. Yes. This is just the same as all the other components you added. Here we go. We're gonna nestle that in Lupin. Lupin holding her holding hands. There we go. That's keep. So there's that popped right up again. They stopped me after that and the other holding its OK. And now I'm going to grab across the loop with my pliers. Pull the tail around. Yes, twice. Perfect. And now, get a trim. Great. Now this is a component, just like the other one. So we're gonna put on a crystal. Great crystal. Get it on there, Deceiver. The whole list and a little aquifer class speed. So pretty love the finish on that. It's very pretty and more crystal PCI crystal. That looks great. And now what we're gonna do is do another partial loop. So on all the other components you made a Finnish loop after your beads. This time you're going to make the loop. But you're not going to do the raps. So we're going to do what we just did. Oops. I slipped off my mark there. I don't want to lose my mark because I want this to be the same size. So I got my partial loop. Not gonna close it because I want to put on the class. So I got one side of our taco class peer, we're just gonna feed that on and nestle that into our loop like that. Grab onto the loop just like we've been doing. And due to wraps for that so easy to put a class on a wire work project. It really is. And then we're gonna trim. We have half the class bond. How wonderful that. So now we're ready to do the other side. And to do that, we're gonna just repeat those same steps. Here's our wire. Many grab at my little mark 90 degree bend, reposition the pliers and wrap across the top. She's letting the shape of the players make the loot. That's the key is the shape of a loop. So you just bend the wire around that shape to make your round, Let it do the work. So there's are partial Lewis. Wanna grab the other end of our necklace and feed that on nestle it in there. And now we're ready to close this loop. One rack, two reps. Right. That trim. I always have to reposition. These two said that that flush side is toward the work. Nice, flat cut. And then here is a PCI crystal for our last component, and you need to add the's the whole component before you put on the class. Because otherwise you just end up with two wrapped loops on either side of the class and no way to attach. Yeah, it's just it's not gonna work. So So it's important not to add that last component until you're ready to include half the toggle or whatever your classes. They rising, we go. So there are beads on there were ready to make our partial loop. OK, let me get a nice tight down there than the wire around. You really do get bid and quick at this, but we don't want to close that yet our little partially because we want to add the other half of our toggle. I left this peaceable but long that's all right. You'll find a length that works well for you. When you start getting in the groove of this, I'm gonna grab across the loop just like it did before and wrap it twice. It's really just one skill. Making rap loops it, really? And once you learn to make the rap loops, you can make this necklace as long you could make it a mile long, absolutely adding components. You can make bracelets. This way you can make short, medium and long necklaces. It's really a great technique that there we have our beautiful necklace, close the Taco Man and a beautiful taco class. Beautiful love it. 7. Finished Necklace: while the necklace turned out so pretty, and it really is just one technique making wrapped loops. We hope you have fun making your own white work necklace.