Monday, December 29, 2014

DIY Tutorial Wire-Wrapped Heart Pendant

Have you ever wanted to use a unique way of attaching a focal drop or pendant to a jewelry or craft design?  Well I found some pretty Swarovski crystal hearts in my great stash of beads and jewelry supplies.  Amazingly I had never used them for anything and they were just sitting in a little plastic bin - all lonely and just waiting to be put into some pretty design.

Now usually, I just slip a large jump ring through the hole at the top of beads like these, but I really was yearning for a more interesting and unique way to showcase these beauties.  So here is what I came up with using a bit of wire and an extra round bead to accent the heart.  Here is a picture of a finished focal piece with an emerald green heart and round bead:

This technique should work fine for any drop pendant or focal piece that has a top drilled hole from front to back.  Ready to get started?  Here's what you'll need:

Supplies needed:
  • Focal pendant - I used a 14x14mm size Swarovski crystal heart.
  • Round bead - I used a 6mm round faceted Swarovski crystal bead.
  • Round jump ring - I used an 8mm size closed jump ring - but you could also use an open jump ring if you prefer.
  • 10 inch piece of 24 gauge wire.
Tools needed:
  • Wire cutters
  • Flat nose pliers and/or needle nose pliers - you can get by with either one of these, but I find I like to use both.
  • Round nose pliers

Now for a quick look at how to make this pendant, here is a photo collage tutorial.  For more detailed instructions, scroll down below the photo collage.


1.  Slide your heart or other focal piece onto the wire about mid way.  Then pinch the wire together just above the top of the piece to form a little triangle.

2.  Now slide your round bead through BOTH pieces of wire down to the top of the little triangle part of the wire.  This is why you need 24 gauge wire which is small enough to accommodate two strands of wire.

3.  Next you need to make a simple wire-wire wrapped loop above your bead.  This is a basic jewelry making technique that many of you might already know how to do, but I will review it here:

Grab the wire just above the bead with your round nose pliers.

Bend the wire away from you over the top piece of your pliers.

Reposition your pliers so that you can begin looping the wire over the BOTTOM of your pliers.

Begin forming your loop by wrapping the two pieces of wire around the bottom portion of your pliers.
Now if you don't want to add a jump ring - or if you plan to use an open jump ring instead of a closed one - you could finish the loop by just wrapping your wire down to the round bead.  But I like the stability of a closed jump ring so this is where I added one.

Slide your closed jump ring through the loop - you might have to open your loop a bit to accommodate it.  I find it helpful to use my needle nose pliers to pull the loop through - but you can just use your fingers.

Grab your loop of wire just below your jump ring using your flat nose or needle nose pliers.

Wrap the two pieces of wire around the "stem" of wire from below your jump ring down to your round bead.

Snip off the extra wire with your wire cutters.  After cutting the wire, remember to "flatten" the ends down using your flat nose or needle nose pliers - I did not take a picture of this but you should do it to make the piece more finished.

If your loop is crooked - which it often will be - use your flat nose or needle nose pliers to straighten it.

And here is what your finished piece should look like.

I liked this design so much I made two more in different colors:

You can use these as necklace charms, key charms - or in my case - I used mine for rear view mirror car charms.

I hope you found this tutorial helpful.  If you make something using this tutorial and want me to showcase it here, contact me and send me a picture!

Happy beading!