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December 04, 2013

Woven Bead Cap Earrings

 I wish I posted these woven bead caps several weeks ago when I made them.  I see a lot of designs with wire weaving and I've always discarded the idea as 'not my thing'.  With these earrings, it may have become something I'd like to make 'my thing'.

I received the long drops in a bead assortment from Fire Mountain Gems several months ago - probably as part of this shipment, but I didn't write about them.  I think they are a dyed 'jade', also called serpentine.  I love that they are drilled lengthwise, not as a briolette.

I have been interested in making bead caps for a while, and this simple weave seemed like a good thing to try on the long drops.  I don't think I have a tutorial on this exact weave, but this one is pretty close.  Instead of multiple wraps around each of the sides, I just made one loop around the frame wire and continued to the other side.  

Here's the really sad part.  I didn't write about these when I made them, because I wasn't sure how to finish the drops - i.e. make them into earrings.  Now that I've finally come up with the design - I'm not exactly sure how I made them!  Grrrr.  

I'll just have to wing it.  I know the weaving wire is very fine gauge wire - probably 28 or 30g from this huge spool my Dad gave me.  The frame wire around the side of the bead is 20 or 22g.  

The most unique thing about this design is the wire in the center of the bead.  Typically, you use a head pin or paddle pin - but lately I've been experimenting with using a folded wire down the middle.  That gives me the opportunity to make a closed loop as the bottom - or to just use it to fasten the bead to the frame.  Obviously, I thought these drops would have dangles at the time I made them. so I left a loop.

Here's where my memory fails me.  I can't remember whether I started at the bottom (i.e. widest part) of the bead and wove up to the tip or vice-versa.  I'm pretty sure I remember weaving down from the narrowest tip of the bead.  I know I left extra space for the wire to slip between the bead and the frame wire, and that I didn't make the close loop at the top of the bead until I was satisfied with the cap.

I also remember really enjoying the weaving part.  It was very meditative and relaxing.  Obviously, I'll have to try this again some time, and hopefully, I've left myself (and you) enough bread crumbs to do that!  

From now on, when I learn a new technique, I'll try to post it right away - before I forget what I did!


  1. Wow, these are really, really cool... thanks for posting them!

  2. These are great and a different design idea. I have wanted to try some new things with wire and you have inspired me.