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Making your own components from wire teaches the use of a micro torch. It sounds complicated, but it is very easy!
Make sure an adult is around when operating a micro torch!

Here is a simple and fast lesson in making ball head pins. Making ball head pins from wire allows you to control the quality of your jewelry components, save money on supplies and create a wider range of pieces.

Materials:
Butane micro torch
Silver Wire (22 - 26 gauge round)
3 x 3 inch scrap cardboard
Cup with water
Wire cutters
Bent nose pliers

1. Cut wire into strips
Make sure not to wear loose clothing,and tie up long hair. Keep your torch over a nonflammable surface (I used an old cookie sheet.)  Wrap the fine silver wire around the 3x3 square of cardboard. Clip the ends on either side, to create strips of silver wire.

2. Heat the Wire
Turn on torch, and use the bent nose pliers to hold the wire into the flame. You need to hold the wire in the hottest part of the flame.

4. Move Wire to Create Ball
Slowly move the wire down as it balls up more. when your done (the ball at the end is the size you desire), dip the wire into the cup of water. You can set it aside and move onto the next strip.  Head pins are used for things like wire wrapped gemstone dangles, for jewelry. You can have much better control over the quality of your work when you make the components yourself.


The word Jewelry comes from an Old French word that means 'plaything'. It has been made to adorn nearly every body part, from hairpins to toe rings. Jewelry has been used throughout history for a number of reasons, aside from looking appealing:

Identification
Currency/trade
Functional (like buckles)
Symbolism/Religion
Protection

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Bio: I run a little company that rebuilds old homes. When we aren't up to our elbows in demolition dust, I'm obsessed with recycling ... More »
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