Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Jewellery Making: Two loop bracelets

To your left you will see my "Water" bracelet. It's supposed to represent one oxygen (white) and two hydrogen. (Remember: I'm a chemistry geek!) I've put loops on both ends and connected them with jump rings to the next charm, although in this case I've used two jump rings as my wrists are quite large.

WHAT YOU'VE LEARNED SO FAR...
How to use a head pin
How to use an eye pin
How to create a loop
How to create two loops
How to attach two items together using jump rings
How to thread an eye pin or head pin

WHAT YOU'LL LEARN TODAY
How to size a bracelet
How to attach a series of things together

SUPPLIES (for a regular wrist...for a larger wrist, see brackets)
6 - 8 mm round beads (7)
12 - 2 mm round beads (14)
6 - 2 inch long eye pins (7)
about 20 jump rings (4 mm)
1 clasp of your choice (choose something you can take off by yourself easily!)

EQUIPMENT
Wire cutters
Pliers

HOW TO SIZE A BRACELET
Measure your wrist. Then cut a piece of fabric to the length you want. Use this as your guide to making bracelets. Write down the length of the fabric because you'll want to figure out how many beads you'll need for a project.

For instance, if you have a 7 inch wrist (17.5 cm) you'll want to count beads and clasp sizes to ensure you have enough for your project. If you have a 1.5 cm clasp, then you'll need to fill up 16 cm of space with beads. If you have 8 mm beads, you will need to have 20 of those for your project. If you are using 4 mm beads, you'll need double that.

(To be honest, I am terrible for planning my project in advance and buying just what I need for one project. I always figure I can use the extra for craft group...but if you're on a budget, or are already inundated with tons of supplies, then planning before going to the bead store is a good thing!)

THE PROJECT!
Thread in the following way: 1 small bead, 1 large bead, 1 small bead. Now create your loop on one end (because you've already got a loop on the other end). Do this five more times to create six charms (seven, if you're a big wristed girl!), then attach the loops to each other using at least one jump ring. Make sure it fits your wrist, then add the clasp to either end of the chain. You're done!

Here's a variation of this project I call the "Poison" Bracelet (to match the poison earrings from post #1). I've used three beads (6 mm - green, black, and white) with spacers in between the beads and bead caps at the end of each section. I've done exactly what I did above -- thread the beads on to the eye pin in this fashion - bead cap, white bead, spacer, black bead, spacer, green bead, bead cap - then made the loop at the end. I've attached six of these charms together with one 4mm jump ring, then added the clasp.

NOTES ON CLASPS
I asked Raymond what he wanted for Christmas, and he said "Jewellery you can take off by yourself!" I found these clasps at Country Lane (Surrey) and the Bead to Bead store in Chilliwack. I have no idea what they are called, but they are awesome. Choose your clasp carefully -- there is nothing more frustrating than not being able to get your jewellery on your wrist!!!

BRACELET PROJECTS YOU CAN DO WITH THESE TECHNIQUES!
  • Smoky Twist Bracelet (Rings & Things)
  • Crimson Lace Bracelet (Fusion Beads - note: This calls for wire wrapping. You can make it without this technique!)
  • Green Room bracelet (Fusion Beads)
  • Festival of Lights bracelet (Fusion Beads - note: great example of adding charms!)
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