Craft a matching pair of mint earrings with gemstone briolette beads using just a handful of materials and tools.
We’ve teamed up with jewellery supplies company, Kernowcraft to bring you this DIY for beginners. In it you’ll learn a basic wire wrapping technique used in a whole variety of handmade jewellery. Ready to fashion your own accessories? Get started…
You will need:
• Side cutters
• Snipe nose pliers
• Round nose pliers
• 300cm of 0.3mm sterling silver wire
• 2 x sterling silver large kidney wires
• 2 x gemstone briolettes (we chose aqua blue chalcedony)
Find a range of gemstone briolettes from amethyst to moonstone on the Kernowcraft website. When ordering gemstones with Kernowcraft you can ‘add a note’ to your order – if you’re making these earrings ask for a matching pair.
How to make wire wrapped gemstone earrings
Cut 15-20cm of wire using the side cutters.
Thread a briolette onto the wire around 3-4cm down.
Using snipe nose pliers pinch the wire together at the top of the briolette to form a triangle shape – ensure the briolette is centre.
Hold both sides of the wire with your round nose pliers and bend the longer length to a right angle. At this point work half way up the plier nose to ensure you allow yourself enough room for a good wrap.
If necessary use side cutters to cut the short side of wire so that it stops at around the same point as bend on the longer side of wire. This will determine the length of your wrap.
Form a loop with the longer side of wire by bending it to a right angle and wrapping it around the tip of the pliers. Make sure the loop is above the end of the short side of the wire and centre of the briolette.
Hold the loop flat between the tips of the snipe nose pliers. Take the long length of wire between your fingers and holding it taught, start wrapping it around the stem of the wires -starting at the base of the loop and working down towards the bead.
To help keep your wire wrapping tight you can use the tips of snipe nose pliers to gently squeeze the coil together.
Continue to wrap until you reach the top of the bead. You can finish your wrapping here or you can continue to wrap around the top of the bead to form a cap.
When you are happy with the length of your wrap bring the wire up and around toward the loop.
Use side cutters to cut the wire as close as possible to the coil.
For a neat finish use snipe nose pliers to squeeze the end of wire into the coil.
Your briolette is fully wrapped and ready to go! Repeat the process on the other briolette and simply attach to the sterling silver large kidney wires to complete your earrings.
The design possibilities for wire wrapped gemstone briolettes are endless! For example, use a jump ring to attach one to a chain for an elegant necklace, create multiple and make a gemstone charm style bracelet, or attach to some big hoop earrings for a boho look.
Kernowcraft is a gemstone and jewellery supplies company based on the beautiful north coast of Cornwall. They have been supplying hobbyists and professional jewellery makers worldwide with high quality products since 1967. As a passionate team of jewellery makers they offer lots of tips, advice and projects and are always happy to answer any questions over the phone or by email.
* This is a sponsored post