How to Make Wire Jewelry


Wire jewelry is about putting different components together in a beautiful way. You can make a simple but elegant necklace, bracelet, or anklet just by putting some beads on some wire and attaching them to some chain.

Wire Wire is sold in different sizes which are called gauges. For example, 20-gauge wire is thicker than 24-gauge, and suitable for most projects like earrings. 22-gauge is usually strong enough to hold when a lighter wire is desired.
Memory Wire
Memory Wire Memory wire holds its circular shape. Cut a length of it, string on some beads, and bend the ends in a loop. It should stay on your neck or wrist without a clasp. Comes in sizes to fit your neck, wrist, or even finger.
Findings Headpins, eyepins, jump rings, earwires, and clasps are all useful for creating wire jewelry.
Chain Chain comes in different thicknesses and styles. Chain can become part of the design, or just a means to display a nice bead or charm


Pliers are necessary for working with wire. Make sure you buy them from a beading store, as the ones sold in hardware stores are not fine enough for jewelry making.

Round Nose Pliers
Round Nose Pliers Pliers with round ends that are good for making loops. Along with chain nose pliers and wire cutters, these make up your basic wirework toolkit.
Chain Nose Pliers
Chain Nose Pliers Chain-nows pliers are rounded on the outside but have flat inside edges. They are good for gripping wire or a jump ring, as opposed to round-nose pliers, which are better for making loops.
Wire Cutters
Wire Cutters Diagonal wire cutters should cut flush. You can use these to cut wire or to snip chain into shorter segments.
Jig A board with pegs in it that is useful for bending wire into specific shapes that can be replicated. They can be made out of wood, or configurable metal ones can be purchased. A jig isn’t necessary but it can be useful.

Component #1: Double Eye Pin

double-eye-pin-ovalFor this component, you can either start with an eye-pin, or just make a loop in a piece of wire. Add a bead, and make a loop on the other side with round-nose pliers. Then bend the loop slightly back, so it sits squarely on top of the straight part of the wire.

double-eye-pin In this variation, the main bead is surrounded by spacer beads on both sides. Spacers are usually a neutral color or the color of the metal you use. They add a finished look to your design.

double-eye-pin-wrappedWire-wrapping the double eye-pin makes it more secure. It also means you’ll need to use jump rings to attach it to other components, since the wire loop is closed.

Component #2: Bead Dangle

Wire LoopGrab your round-nose pliers, wire cutters, and a few headpins and beads.

ocean-about-to-wrap-wire.jpgPlace a bead on a headpin. Using your round-nose pliers, make a loop, leaving some room below for the wrapping part.

wirewrappedbead2.jpgCoil the wire around the headpin a few times, and then use your wire cutters to cut the wire. Make sure it is flush so the wire end doesn’t catch on anything.

ocean-breeze-wire-wrapped-beads.jpgYour first few attempts may seem pretty wonky–but if you continue to practice you’ll get better quickly.

Putting It All Together

You can create a huge variety of jewelry designs with these simple components. Here are some examples:


Simple Wire Bead Necklace

Ocean Breeze Bracelet


multicolor bohemian-necklace-401998_1280

Your Turn

Ready to get started making your own wire jewelry? Check out our Step by Step Tutorials or browse the Jewelry Gallery for inspiration!

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  1. Avatar Arwa

    I was wondering if you can help me. I am trying to make long chains with beaded accessories and I want this chaine, joining hoops and wires to be very sturdy I am designing these chains to hold mobile phones and not quite sure about the guage

    • Avatar joy

      That’s pretty heavy–I would think at least 16 gauge if not thicker and you’ll want to solder the jump rings shut. That is kind of out of the realm of jewelry though and more what you’d see in a purse or wallet chain.

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