Tag Archives: wire jewellery

10 wirework christmas decorations to inspire you

This Christmas tutor Anna Campbell has been inspired to make her own wirework Christmas decorations. Have a look at some of these fabulous ideas:

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Wire christmas ornament hangers via WireExpressions

 

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Holly decoration via Earth Balance Craft

 

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Celtic tree ornament via Nicholas and Felice

 

london-jewellery-school-wire-wrappped-xmas-bauble

Christmas globe via Eni Fenyvesl

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Christmas wreath via Louise Goodchild Designs

 

 

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Beaded angels via Dotty Beads

 

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Swarovski snowflake via Rosie Willett Designs

 

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Wire christmas tree wall hanging via Better Homes and Gardens

 

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Beaded star and tree via Minimalisti

 

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Snowman via wiremajigs

 

Are you inspired to take one of our one day wirework jewellery classes? We have a couple of places left for December classes and have classes scheduled into 2017

Beginners wire weaving

Beginners wire wrapping

Wire jewellery with Linda Jones

 

Do share your creations with us on Facebook or Instagram!

Author: Anna Campbell

LJG Guest Blogger - Anna Campbell of Campbell Hall Designs

 

Video Tutorial: Make silver stud earrings

At this time of year dangly earrings can get caught in hat and scarves, so Jessica Rose has put together this handy tutorial on crreating stud earrings at home using wire and and some standard jewellery tools.

 

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You can find a step-by-step video tutorial on the youtube channel.
Have a go and let us know how you get on by sharing pictures on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

If you want to learn more jewellery making techniques you can find our face to face classes here, online courses here and a selection of other videos on our YouTube channel.

50% off online learning for LJS students

online jewellery classes

Have you taken any of the following courses with London Jewellery School?

If so we have a very special offer for you. Until 29 February 2016, you can have 50% off the cost of the sister course at Jewellery School Online, our online learning site.

That means if you have taken one of the courses listed above you are eligible for the discount on the corresponding online courses which can be a great way of reinvigorating your learning if you are feeling rusty and need a reminder.

 

Why buy an online course?

These courses are a great way to continue your learning at home

  • You can pause, rewind and reply demos as many times as you like to perfect your technique
  • Each course comes with lifetime access and downloadable course notes to support your learning
  • Not everyone can remember everything covered in the course by the time they get round to making at home. Online courses are the perfect solution to refresh your memory and ensure you get great value for money when learning.

 

Which online courses are available to you?

LJS Course                                                                                                               Online cource with 50% off

Beginner’s Metal Clay or Silver Metal Clay Taster                                           Make Silver Metal Clay Charms with Julia Rai

Fashion Jewellery or Intermediate Beading                                                      Introduction to Fashion Jewellery with Hayley Kruger

Beginners Wire Wrapping or Linda Jones Wire Class                                    Introduction to Wire Jewellery with Linda Jones

Make a Silver Ring Taster Class or Beginners Silver Jewellery                     Make a Silver Ring with Rosie Sanders

 

How to claim your discount…

Email: contact@jewelleryschoolonline.com with your name, the course you have taken at LJS and the online course you would like to take and we will send you your 50% unique coupon code. You can then sign up to the course for half the price and access it from now onwards.

We look forward to seeing you on a course soon.

Video tutorial: Bead and wire stacked rings

stacked ring video tutorial

 

Stacked rings are very popular with our students at the moment so we thought you’d all enjoy this tutorial for making the bead and wire versions. They make beautiful additions to pretty much any outfit. Why not have a go at making your own in a variety of colours.

 

stacked ring video tutorial

 If you would like to have a go at making them, pop over to the youtube channel to see our latest tutorial taking you through the process, step by step…
Have a go and let us know how you get on by sharing pictures on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

If you want to learn more jewellery making techniques you can find our face to face classes here, online courses here and a selection of other videos on our YouTube channel.

Tutorial – wire flower by Linda Jones

Last year our sister blog JewelryFromHome published a special tutorial from wire jewellery guru Linda Jones. We’re reproducing it here to give you another go at this summery make.

wire jewellery tutorial

If you’re just starting out with wire and you’ve been following my online jewellery tutorials – here’s a little extra bit of inspiration!  I never get tired of creating wire flowers to embellish accessories and jewellery designs. So have fun making your own!

Tools: Round and chain nosed pliers, cutters, hammer and steel stake. Round mandrel (such as a pen or pencil).

Materials: 0.8mm copper and silver plated wire, 0.4mm silver-plated wire, assorted mixed beads.

wire jewellery

Step 1: Working from a spool of 0.8mm wire, use the tips of your round nosed pliers to create a small link

Step 2: Place your cylindrical mandrel (I used a pen) approximately 2.5cm (1”) up from the link and bend the wire around to form a loop (to create your first petal).

Step 3: Using the tips of your chain nosed pliers, bend the wire back in the opposite direction.

Step 4: Repeat steps 2 to 3, to create 6 more petals, so that you have 7 in total.  Cut the wire from the spool (leaving just enough to form a link).

wite jewellery tutorial

Step 5: Pull the petal loops around to form a circle and post the cut end through the small link (created in step1) to secure the frame together.

Step 6: Repeat all the steps again to create another flower frame in 0.8mm silver plated wire.  Hammer the ends of the petals on a steel block to flatten and work-harden.

Step 7: Working from the end of your 0.8mm copper spool, create a small link with your round nosed pliers.  Bend the wire up and down on your pliers to create 7 zig-zags (about 1.5cm in height) and cut from the spool.

Step 8: Pull the zig-zag frame around to form a circle and secure by attaching the cut end through the small link.

wire jewellery tutorial

Step 9: Stack all 3 frames on top of each other (with the zig-zag unit on the very top) and using a long length of 0.4mm wire, bind them around the centre to secure as one.  Once all the frames are firmly attached, bring the ends of the wire around to the back of the flower and twist together. Cut off any projecting ends.

Step 10: Cut another long length of 0.4mm wire and begin securing your choice beads to the centre of the flower frame, covering all your binding underneath.  ‘Sew’ in as many beads as you wish to fill the centre of the frame. Cut off any projecting wire and neaten the ends. *Optional: you can use the tips of your round nosed pliers to bend the very tips of your zig-zag frame in towards the central beaded area.

Your flower is now ready to be attached to a chain, brooch back, hair accessory … or, you could create a smaller version to wire onto a ring shank!

If you want to learn about all the techniques Linda has used sign up for Jewelry from Home’s online course,  Introduction to Wire Jewelry with Linda Jones or check out our wire jewellery workshops.

Essential additions to your jewellery library

At London Jewellery School we have been lucky enough to receive review copies of the first two books in a new series of jewellery books put together by the editor of Making Jewellery magazine editor Sian HamiltonStringing and Linking Jewelry Workshop and Wirework Jewelry Workshop.

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Each book brings together clear and comprehensive technique sections with a wide range of projects previously published in the magazine.

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The result is two clearly laid out books with plenty of attractive photography showing all the stages of the various common techniques and the projects. This clean look make the book very attractive as well as useful.

The projects have been chosen to give plenty of variety in techniques and styles – so there is something for everyone and plenty of inspirations for your jewellery making.

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These books are a great addition to any beader or wireworker’s bookshelf. For beginners they will help develop technical skills and provide interesting jewellery making challenges. For more experienced makers, they will act as a useful resouce on various skills and a source of ideas.

Please note that Sian will be speaking at our evening of jewellery sector talks on 28 May 2015. Click here for details.

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Step-by-step project: Wire wrapped bracelet

Practice your wire wrapping skills with this fun statement bracelet.

wire wrapped bracelet

Materials

1.5m of 1.25mm silver-plated copper wire

2m of 0.6mm silver-plated copper wire

Selection of glass beads

Masking tape

Chain nose pliers

Round nose pliers

Wire cutters

Steel block

Whammer or hammer

wire wrapped bracelet

Step 1

wire wrapped bracelet

Cut four 35cm lengths of the 1.25mm wire and make a spiral at one end of each one. You can find a tutorial on creating spirals and coils at jewelryfromhome.com

Step 2

wire wrapped bracelet

Use a Whammer or other jewellery hammer and a steel block to flatten the spirals and the wire for about 2cm below the spiral.

Step 3

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Arrange the four wires side by side so that the coiled ends are arranged nicely – you may want to take some time to get an arrangement you like. Tape the wires in place and cut a 40cm length of 0.6mm wire. Carefully wrap the larger wires for about 2cm flattening the wraps in place with your pliers as you go along.

Step 4

wire wrapped bracelet

Mark the wires 9cm and 18cm from the middle of the first wrap and tape wires in parallel again. Make 2cnm wraps over the two marks as in step 3. Once the wraps are in place you can start to shape the bracelet by pulling the large wire outwards in between the wraps to form diamond shapes.

Step 5

wire wrapped bracelet

Trim the wires at the unfinished end so that the outer wires measure approx 7cm from wrap and inner two wires 8cm. Make and hammer coils as before. Now press your bracelet round a cup, drink can or other cylindrical object to shape it.

Step 6

wire wrapped bracelet

Cut a 15cm length of 0.6mm wire. Make a few wraps round the centre of one side of the diamond section, trim and press ends in place. Then add a selection of beads and wrap your wire securely to the other side of the diamond section. Repeat for other diamond section. Then check and tidy up and wire ends before wearing. You could also think about wrapping a series of wires in each section to fill the whole space – if so use 0.4mm wire with small beads.

 

wire wrapped bracelet

 

 

 

 

Inspirations: Autumn winter jewellery trends

So what jewellery trends might be influencing your making this autumn and winter? The London Jewellery School team take a look at the catwalks to pick out a few themes that might inspire your jewellery making (but please remember the difference between taking inspiration and copying).

Silver rings with coloured stones from the Proenza Schouler

Think big, fashion and the catwalks are all about statement pieces. This means less of a focus on expensive metals and precious stones. Instead size and colour means the use of semiprecious stones, and materials such as Perpsex, resin, leather and feathers – fur has even been incorporated into fashion pieces.

Leather and fur cuff from Fendi

Jewellery makers might want to put their own spin on chokers and cuffs – beading and wire work with crystals and glass beads or semi precious stones will work well here, as will soutache.

Crystal choker by Balenciaga

Giant crystal flowers make a statement at Chanel

Large feature beads are perfect for these statement pieces but seed beads will also be popular for more ethnic inspired chokers.

Crystal collar by Givenchy

If you want large coloured cabochon-type elements, think about creating your own in resin.

Cuffs in Perpsex or leather will definitely make a statement and you can also think about combining leather with chains to create fun fashion pieces that will catch the eye.

 

Gucci bonbon bracelets

 

In the jewellery workshop: Hammer time

jewellery making hammersIf you were to create the sound track of the London Jewellery School studios, hammering would definitely feature.

Hammers are an essential for silversmithing as well as being useful for other jewellery-making such as wire work. So here are a few that would be useful in any jewellery workshop.

rawhide mallet

Rawhide mallet. This studio workhorse hits your silver with less force than a metal hammer so is useful for shaping your pieces when you don’t want to damage the surface.

jewllery making textureing hammers silver

Texturing hammers do what they say on the tin. The ridged patterned ends allow you to make patterns on you metal. They come in a wider variety of patterns. Our beginners silver students usually enjoy testing out a range of these hammers on copper to see what they can achieve.

ball pein hammer

Ball-peen hammer. These all-purpose hammers can be used for flattening and shaping metal, removing dents and to drive chisels, punches, stamps.

planishing hammer

Repousse hammers can be used for both planishing and forming metal into complex shapes and for light riveting. They can be used with a doming block, anvil or sand bag. The large flat surface reduces the risk you may damage your piece.

riveting hammer

Riveting hammers are light weight and used for securing rivet ends. The heads are relatively small to allow you to be precise.

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Hammers can also be in wire work to flatten and work harden your pieces. The Whammer pictured was designed by wire jewellery specialist (and LJS tutor) Linda Jones has a domed metal end for flattening and hardening wires against a steel block and a nylon end for working with coloured wires so that the surface isn’t damaged.

Jessica Rose takes us behind the scenes of her first jewellery making book

London Jewellery School founder Jessica Rose‘s first jewellery making book, Bead and Wire Fashion Jewelry , is about to hit the shops, so we decided to ask her about how it came about and what it is like to produce a book.

 

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Tell us a little about the book and where the idea came from

Absolutely. The book is called Bead and Wire Fashion Jewelry and is all about making big, bold and beautiful statement pieces of jewellery using a range of techniques and easy to source materials that you can easily do from home.

The idea came to me when I was learning to make my own bead and wire based jewellery. I loved going on to Amazon and finding books to teach me techniques for using wire, pliers, beads and mixed materials. I stated to apply those techniques to making my own style of statement fashion jewellery – pieces that combined different materials like fabrics, buttons, charms, etc, with traditional beads and wire wrapping.

When I was teaching classes at London Jewellery School, students often asked for a book that taught my style of jewellery making and designing in. I would usually give them a list of bead, wire, fashion jewellery and mixed media books along with suggested magazines to look at. This made me think that it would be great to have one book that combined all of these with guidance on the design process too. The seed was sown and I added “write a fashion jewellery making book” to my bucket list.

 

Bead and Wire Fashion Jewellery

Jessica’s book is full of stunning statement pieces and plenty of advice on creating your own variations and designs

Why did you decide to do it?

It is something that I have wanted to do for a while, I think there is something very special about being able to hold a book that you have written in your hand.

I also knew the process would force me to take some time out from behind the desk and spreadsheets running LJS and give me time to get making and be creative again – I loved designing all the pieces.

Mostly I decided to do it as I could see a clear need and gap in the market for this kind of book. It is the book I would have loved to have brought when I started making jewellery and with all the 1000s of students we have coming to LJS each year, I wanted to be able to offer something that I thought would help them on their jewellery making journey.

 

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All the projects have detailed step by step instructions with beautiful clear pictures

 

Was writing the book what you expected – how long did it take you to come up with the ideas?

The process was a little different to what I had expected, but then again, having never written a book before I didn’t really know what to expect.

Once all the contracts were signed there were quite tight timescales that publishers needed me to work to. They have lots to think about in terms of layout, imagery and promoting it once the writing is finished so you have a close working relationship with them over when and how it all needs to be provided.

Coming up with ideas was the really fun part. I already had quite a clear picture in my mind of what I wanted for the book. I think is really important to get your concept clear in your mind from the offset so that the projects have a common theme and there is continuity. I choose to do chapters covering; rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings.

When I was designing the main questions I would ask myself are; is it a statement piece? Do the colours look gorgeous together? And, most importantly, would I love to wear it? If the answer was yes to all three I knew I was on the right track.

BEAD AND WIRE FASHION JEWELLERY

The book features a range of necklaces, earrings, bracelets and rings such as this clever three stone wire wrapped piece

 

What is involved in writing/publishing a book – what surprised you about the process?

Firstly I wrote a proposal for the book idea and submitted it to the publishers. I didn’t hear back for a few months so assumed that they weren’t interested or that it wasn’t the right time. I realised later that it can take months (and even years) for a proposal to be looked at, considered and researched at the publishers end. I heard back nearly a year later and they provisionally wanted me to write the book. Yippee!

After getting over my excitement I wrote a few sample projects for them to see before they offered me a contract to write the full book.

After contracts were signed, which I carefully read and made sure I was happy with upfront, I met with some of the publishing team and agreed the initial structure, chapters and timescale for when they needed all the content.

The writing process took around eight months and we liaised backwards and forwards from time to time on projects, text and images for the book. On the whole I got on with it and just started making the pieces, taking the pictures and working my through the book.

It got a little more stressful toward the end of the process as I am awful at sticking to deadlines, and in book publishing it is crucial that you do fit in with the timings because a whole team of people work on getting the book layouts done and ready once all of your content is in. With a little help from the LJS team and the team at the Guild of Master Craftsmen we got it all done and dusted and that was that.

It was a lot of work but a relatively simple and straightforward process. Like most things it is just about getting on and doing it.

 

bead wire jewelry fashion

For each project Jessica shares her design process through a mood board

What would you advise other people to think about if they were thinking of publishing a book or a collection of projects?

I think the main question to ask yourself before starting any book or project is; who are your target readers? Who are you putting it together for and do they want to make what you are offering? These are effectively your customers (or readers) and every book needs an audience.

I spotted a gap in the market for a fashion-focused bead and wire book because this type of book hasn’t been done before and I saw a demand at the London Jewellery School from students (and myself), who would like a book like this.

If you are considering writing a jewellery making or craft-based book (which is a great thing to do), then you need to consider what you can offer and what will be different about your book compared to all the rest on the market. Are there enough people who would be interested in buying it and how will you reach them? The publishers will do a lot of the promotion work, however, they will only take on a book as a project if they believe they will sell enough copies.

Also think about the amount of time you need to commit. It can take up to two years to produce a book from idea to bookshelf and for about six to nine months of that time you may need to work on it nearly full-time. It is a big commitment, so make sure you can accommodate it before agreeing terms with publishers.

Other than that the main focus is on coming up with lovely, unique projects that can inspire budding jewellers or crafters. If you can put something together that can help others to learn, be creative and start or develop a rewarding hobby or career then I think that’s a great thing to be able to do. I know that was my focus when putting the pages of the book together and I hope it can do just that.

bead wire fashion jewellery

The book offers advice on choosing colours and adapting projects to fit your style

If you would like a copy, the book is out in early September 2014 and available to pre-order from Amazon now here.

Jessica would be very happy to sign any copies and would love to know what you think of it and see pictures of your versions of the projects inside – feel free to get in touch anytime at Jessica@londonjewelleryschool.co.uk