Itty Bitty Bird's Nest Earrings

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About: Geeky artist. MUST. MAKE. STUFF. More stuff at: rhondachasedesign.com

I've been meaning to create an earring design that matches my bird nest pendants without being exactly the same. These tiny nests are even smaller than the pendants and use different techniques to achieve the messy look of a real nest. My new design is a good weight for earrings. I also really like that these little nests are always unique and can be customized with different metals and different "eggs". They make beautiful earrings – especially for moms.

Step 1:

Step 2: What You Need

6’ 24g round dead soft wire

3' 26g round wire

3 4mm oval (rice) pearls

2 matching ear wires

patina and sealer (optional)

Round nose pliers

Flat nose pliers

Wire cutters

Drill (optional)

Step 3: Prepare Wire

Cut the 6' piece of 24g wire in half.

Bend each of these two 24g pieces in half - don't cut.

Cut the 3' piece of wire in half.

Step 4: Twist

Take one of the 24g pieces of bent wire and twist holding the bent end. You can do this with pliers, a wire twister, or by putting one end in a drill. (The drill is easiest) Make it a fairly loose twist so you don't break the wire.

Step 5: Make the Nest Base

LOOSLY spiral the square twisted wire until the spiral is wider than the egg cluster. You must leave gaps in the spiral to pull the binding wire through later.

Step 6: Add Eggs

String 2-3 pearls on the 26g round wire and form a circle about 2/3 of the way down the wire. Twist the wire gently a couple of times (too tight and you may break the wire) to secure. Leave ends free and set aside.

These are the eggs.

Step 7:

Step 8: Join the Pieces

Affix the egg cluster to the center of the spiral with the round wire ends. Don’t worry about centering or being neat – that comes later.

Start using the egg wire ends to bind the twisted spirals together. I usually do this in a haphazard way perpendicular to the twisted spiral wires.

Step 9: Nest Building

Wind more of the twisted wire up and around the eggs into a nest shape. The height and thickness is up to you. Leave gaps. Don’t be neat.

Step 10: Continue Building

Bind nest together with more round wire, moving in and out through gaps.

Step 11: Keep Going

Continue to wind more of the twisted wire up and around the eggs into a nest shape. The height and thickness is up to you. Don’t be neat.

Step 12:

If you need more round wire, cut more.

Pull wires a tight as you want now. The nest should be getting fairly dense.

Step 13:

Pull out a loop of twisted wire from the side of the nest with the round nose pliers.

Step 14: Finishing

Cut excess wire and tuck in ends with pliers

Step 15: Tiny Nests!

Step 16: Add Ear Wires

Twist open the ear wires and add a nest to each one.

Step 17:

Step 18: Optional Patina

If you want to make the lines more defined, add a dark patina. I use M-24. Apply, wash, buff the highlights, and seal.

Step 19: Variations

Copper, silver, silver with a patina.

Step 20: Ready to Wear!

You can use most lead-free metals (all US jewelry wire is safe to wear), including recycled wire, to make these earrings. You can also use any round or oval beads of your choice for the eggs. The combinations are limitless!

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and I'd love to see what you create. Feel free to post your photos in the comments.

Happy Wrapping!

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    15 Discussions

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    Too Many Projects

    4 months ago

    If you do these for a particular mother with multiple children you can match the number of children and use pink for daughters and blue for sons. I made these a couple years ago for my wife, two pink for our daughters and a blue for our son. I'm thinking about doing another set with colored seed beads(smaller) for grand kids as well as the kids but I need to figure out how to add a great grandchild now too. lol Nice work.

    1 reply

    I make custom bird nest pendants exactly as you describe. 1 pearl per child or grandchild, in the colors of choice. (If you want to stay with pearls, you can get ovals as small as 2mm.) I'd love to see your work if you feel like sharing!

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    Rhonda Chase Designdannesys

    Reply 4 months ago

    Thanks! It took me a while to figure out how to get them so small, with pearls :-)

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    WolfO2

    5 months ago

    well done - looks beautiful. Can you please explain me what rice perls are? Google couldn´t...

    2 replies
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    artchick500WolfO2

    Reply 5 months ago

    Hi, thanks!! Rice just refers to the shape, and just means oval. Any oval beads work great as eggs, though I often use round beads as well :-)

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    WolfO2artchick500

    Reply 5 months ago

    oh, thanks. This saves my daughter from getting rice grain instead of pearls ;-)
    Have a happy and inspiring Christmas! Greetings from Germany.