If you’ve been keeping tabs on my jewelry projects lately, you know I’ve been hammering wire a lot! I’ve really been enjoying the flexibility of form and the textures and finishes you can create by hammering. The hardest part of today’s tutorial is getting your two pieces to match to make an earring set, but the technique itself isn’t difficult at all! Let me show you how to make these hammered wire earrings!
What you’ll need for hammered wire jewelry:
- Wire. I have really enjoyed using this 12-gauge aluminum wire for a big, chunky look. Aluminum is soft, so it’s easy to form, plus it’s inexpensive. You can also use a plated copper wire, but you’ll want a hgher gauge to be able to form your shapes well.
- Chasing hammer and bench block
- Jewelry tools: wire cutters, round-nosed and long-nosed pliers, and nylon pliers are also helpful to keep from marring your wire as you work.
- Earring wires and jump rings
- Optionally, a metal hole punch, 2-inch head pins, and two 6mm beads for adding a dangling charm
First, form your wire into a spiral. I used my nylon pliers for this, and just used my fingers for coiling it. I only used about 4 inches of wire, but you can make yours as large or small as you like.
Once I had about 1/2 inch “tail” left, I bent it back the other direction over my round-nosed pliers to form the top loop. Nip off any excess wire.
Make two of these, as close to the same as you’re able, so that they match. Next, I hammered my form until it resembled a flat disc. I wanted to add a charm, so I punched a 1/16″ hole at the bottom center. I hammered the other shape on the opposite side, so that the two shapes were mirror images of each other.
Next, I made two little charms. I added a 6mm bead onto a head pin, looped the top portion over my round-nosed pliers, and wrapped the wire around the pin underneath the loop I just created. Cut off any excess wire.
If you’re new to making charms, and want to see more than this 3-step photo, I’ve got a video tutorial for making charms, too. You can see it in more detail by visiting that post.
All that’s left is to assemble your charms with your earrings, and to attach the earring wires with jump rings. I used 7mm jump rings on the charms, and both 7mm and 4mm jump rings to attach the ear wires.
When they’re finished, they’re a really fun pair of dangle earrings! I made these to match my Anthro-Inspired Beaded Necklace that I made a few weeks ago. It’s my favorite set to wear right now!
What colors are you wearing this summer? I’m definitely into the turquoise right now!