Handcrafted Jewelry "Simple Hearts"


As a jewelry artist, you don't have to go the complicated route to create wearable art. As with "Simple Hearts," you can use basic wire-working skills to bring to life beautiful, whimsical or even funky-artsy earrings. It's a simple process:
  • Learn a few basic techniques 
  • Practice by playing with the wire until you become comfortable enough to feel in control 
  • Let your imagination carry you away.
Learn to create these simple wire hearts and you can use them as charms in bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. You need only basic tools: pliers, cutters, and round-nosed pliers to transform wire into a pair of whimsical hearts for simple earrings or charms for all of your jewelry pieces.



Materials:
To create your "Simple Hearts," you need wire. Choose sterling silver, copper, gold-filled or whatever wire you prefer. You will need:

  • 12 inches of 18 gauge wire
  • 1 pair or ear-wires

Cut Your wire

  • 2- 4 inch 18 gauge pieces for the heart shape.
  • 4- 1 inch 18 gauge lengths for figure 8 connectors

Create wire components
















1. Form four figure 8s from the 4 smaller pieces of wire.

Using a pair of round-nosed pliers with a smooth, rotating wrist motion, grasp the tip of one end and turn a loop. Form a second loop in the opposite direction at the other end. The pieces should look like number eights (8).
Hammer the figure 8s to retain their shape.

2. Form two twisted figure eights

On two of your figure 8s rotate a loop so the loops face right angles to each other. Do this using two pairs of pliers, one to hold onto one loop, the other to twist the other loop into place. (See Picture #2)

3. Create Heart Shapes-
  • Use a felt tip pen to mark your 4-inch wire pieces at the half point.
  • Fold the wire into a V at this point.
  • Make a loop at the top of each end of your V.
  • Use round-nosed pliers to curl the loops to the inside. (See Pictures #3 & 4)
  • Continue coiling each loop, loosely, until you've created a heart shape. Coil with either a pair of flat pliers or insert your round nosed pliers into the loop you've created and use a rolling wrist motion to create the coil.
  • Use flat pliers to taper the bottom slightly.
  • Use your fingers to rearrange the coil pattern to make it even.
  • Hammer the heart shape to retain its shape. (See Picture #5)


Finish your hearts

  • Create a connection between the two sides of each heart
  • Open up one side of a figure 8, loop it through one side of the heart, then close it.
  • Do the same with the other side. (See Picture #6)
  • Open one side of your bent figure eight and loop it through the middle of your heart. 
  • This will be the connection you use to dangle them from the ear-wires or add it to a necklace. (See Picture # 7)
  • Dangle your earrings from the ear-wires of your choice.


Get heart-creative


 

Make simple hearts to use as charms or earring components. And most of all, have fun!


Carol, The Nice Lady

Revised from Carol's article originally published on Yahoo Voices
Also included as a chapter in The Nice Lady's book "Wire Jewelry - Make it Funky"

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