Introduction: Wire Weaving Basics - Heart Ring
I designed this project specifically to help people learn and practice wire weaving techniques and end up with a pretty piece of jewelry to be proud of and enjoy. I kept the materials extremely simple so that anyone can make this ring as long as you have some wire and a couple of tools.
This heart ring is it perfect project for someone new to wire weaving. Because a ring is intrinsically small, the weaving is very manageable. Larger wire weaving projects take more effort to keep the wire from tangling and to maintain the shape of your project. This ring should take only a couple of hours, giving you time to make more in lots of colors and keep on practicing!
Step 1: The Ring
Because this is a wrap-around ring, it is adjustable. Here, the same ring is shown on two people with different sized fingers. Also, it's easy to wear on multiple fingers. And since size isn't a big issue, this ring makes a great gift.
Step 2: Video Reference
This short video will help when you get to the weaving. Notice how I flip my band over as I weave.
Here is my idea for the woven ring, hastily sketched on my iPhone. (Now you never have to feel like your sketches don't look good enough!)
Please be respectful. This is my original design. Use this tutorial to learn, but not to profit. Thanks!
Step 4: What You Need
2 – 3-4mm bicone crystal beads
26g round wire, craft or dead soft (spool, at least 5')
20g round wire - 12”
I used 26g magenta silver-plated copper wire and 20g bronze jewelry wire.
Flat nose pliers
Round nose pliers
Optional: Ring mandrel (You can substitute a small bottle or fat marker or highlighter)
Step 5: Cut Wire
Cut 12" of the 20g wire. This will give you plenty of extra, so there's no need to be exact.
Step 6: I Fold
Fold the 12" wire in half. Then use your flat nose pliers to pinch the fold into a tight point.
Step 7: V
Gently spread wires into a “V”. This creates the depression in the top of the heart.
Step 8: Start the Heart
Loop one wire around the round nose pliers.
Repeat with the other wire.
Now you have a heart shape on the closed end of your folded wire.
Step 9: Cross Your Heart
Using pliers, adjust the heart so both sides are even and about 1cm across.
Make sure the wires cross in the center of the heart.
Step 10: Create the Weaving Frame
The weaving frame is the heavy wire shape that will support the weaving.
With the flat nose pliers, bend one wire so that it’s parallel to the ground when holding the heart sideways.
Step 11: Heart Frame
Repeat with the other wire. Make the bend exactly opposite the first one.
There should be a gap of about 5mm between the parallel wires. If you don’t have a gap, straighten and bend the wires again so that you do.
The width of the gap determines the band width of the finished ring.
Step 12: Wire Wrapped Heart
Wind the 26g wire around the base of one side of the heart. Leave a 2” tail of wire.
Keep wrapping wire from the spool, around the heart 20g wire, until you get to the base of the heart on the other side.
Use your fingers to push the wire weaving together and press the wrapping tighter as you go.
Try to cover the heart wire so you don't have gaps.
Step 13: Add a Crystal
Thread one bicone bead onto the 2” wire tail.
See if the bead fits in the gap at the base of the heart. Adjust if necessary.
Note: The crystal is optional, but recommended. It keeps the frame wires in position for weaving.
Step 14: Secure the Crystal
Secure the wire tail onto the opposite 20g wire so that the bead lies between the 20g frame wires.
Leave the 2” tail and grab the wire from the spool, which is still attached to the heart. Wind twice around the nearest 20g wire. You will be weaving directly from the spool.
The frame is done and the weaving begins!
Step 15: Ready to Weave!
The next few steps will show you step-by-step how to weave wire on a frame.
If the frame wires are bent, straighten them with pliers. They don't need to be perfectly straight - You can adjust as you weave.
For this ring you will weave the 26g wire (from the spool) onto the heart frame you just finished.
Step 16: Step-By-Step Wire Weaving Interlude
In these example photos, the purple cord represents the 26g weaving wire and the dowels represent the 20g base wire.
Wrap the 26g weaving wire around one base wire twice. Use the 26g wire straight off the spool.
Step 17: Begin Weaving
Hold the base wires so that the weaving wire ends on the top, facing you.
Keep the base wires apart and parallel with your fingers.
Now bring the weaving wire under the opposite base wire.
Then wrap the weaving wire around the second base wire twice. This will also end on top.
NOTE: You can see how I do this in the video in step 2.
Step 18: Keep Weaving
Continue keeping the base wires apart and parallel with your fingers. Bring the weaving wire under the opposite (first) base wire and wrap it twice.
Go back to the beginning of the pattern and keep weaving until you have woven the length you want. I'll go over length of weaving in later steps.
Occasionally push the wires together with your fingers or pliers to keep the pattern close and tight.
Step 20: Weave, Compress, Continue
Step 21: Ring Band
Weave along the parallel wires until the pink part is 2.75”
This is an average band size, but if you want to be more precise, wrap a string around your finger and measure the length. This will be the length of your weaving.
Step 22: Next Heart
Bend the 20g wires 45 degrees away from each other.
Step 23: Heart Start
Wrap one wire inwards over the round nose pliers. Repeat with the other wire.
Step 24: Trim Frame Wire
Trim the ends to about an inch each. The longer the wires, the larger the heart.
Step 25: Spiral
Starting at the end of the wire, make a tiny loop. Then spiral in and up with the flat nose pliers. Repeat with the second frame wire.
Separate the spirals so they form a flat heart shape.
Step 26: Finish the Second Heart
Wind the colored wire around the bottom of the closest side of the heart. (Still from the spool)
Cut the wire off the spool, leaving about 10" to work with.
When you reach the spiral, feed the wire through the heart spiral holes and wind two or three times.
Now wrap the cut colored wire down the other side of the heart. Use pliers if you have trouble pulling the wire through.
Step 27: A Shank Is Born
The ring base, or shank, is just about ready to become a ring.
Step 28: Second Crystal
Add a crystal bead to the wire tail just like before. (Again, this is optional)
Secure the wire on the opposite side.
Trim off the tail ends. Tuck ends in and press down with pliers if not smooth.
Step 29: Your Band Is Ready to Become a Ring
Step 30: Form the Ring
If you have a ring mandrel, bend the band (shank) over the size you want to make. If not, bend the band over a small bottle or fat marker or highlighter.
Step 31: Ring!
Pull the band all the way around the mandrel or other form. Adjust the size with your fingers. Bend the hearts inward with pliers so they follow the curve of the rounded band.
Remove the ring and try it on. Since it's adjustable, fit it to your finger.
Step 32: Done!
Your ring is ready to wear!
You can use the basic ideas in this tutorial to create many kinds of rings and many variations. You can omit one or both of the hearts and create rings suitable for any gender or sized person. You can make the ring wrap around a finger, or make it shorter so that the ends barely meet.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. If you try this project, I'd love to see what you make. Have fun!
Runner Up in the