Today I’m going to show you how to make some cute and easy headpins and simple bead dangles. You’ll need some 22 gauge (or .6mm) wire that is half hard, and both gauge and hardness are important so that the loops will be sturdy and strong enough not to pull apart. You’ll also need a pair of round nose pliers, some chain nose pliers, and some flush cutters, and some 4mm beads (and you’ll want to make sure the holes will be big enough to go over the 22 gauge wire).
How to make a simple headpin
Starting with a straight piece of wire that’s about 3/4 of an inch to 1 inch long, make sure we’re starting with a flush cut end, meaning using the back of the flush cutters to trim off that bur and make sure you have got a nice flat piece of wire to start your curl. Using the very end of the round nose pliers you are going to grab the tip of the wire and make sure the end isn’t sticking out between the plier jaws. Then you will brace the wire between your thumb and forefinger and roll the pliers away from you so as to create a tiny curl in the wire. Now you are going to use the chain nose pliers to squeeze that down; you want to straighten this up so the curl is going to be centered at the bottom of the bead. Now you are going to bend the wire back very slightly as you hold on to the bottom part with the chain nose pliers, so now the curl is going to be centered. Of course, you’ll want to make sure that this part is going to be large enough to stop the bead from falling off so you might need to make this slightly larger depending on your beads.
How to Make the Dangle With a Simple Loop
Keeping in mind that the size of the loop is going to depend on where you place the wire along the plier jaws, grab the wire with the round nose pliers about half an inch away from the bead. Brace the wire between your thumb and forefinger and press against the wire as you roll the pliers away from you to start turning the loop, until you can’t turn your wrist anymore, then loosen your grip and come back to the starting position – making sure that you don’t move the wire up or down the pliers or you’ll get a distorted shape loop and you can then pull the tail around the plier jaw to complete the loop. Once you’ve got that front jaw out of the way the loop should be just about touching the top of the bead, but if it’s not and you’ve got too much space here you can just continue to roll the loop closer until you get it in the right spot. You are likely to have a crooked loop here, so you want to straighten it up so the bead will hang straight. Now grab the loop so you have one jaw on the inside and one on the outside just at the base, and bend back in the direction of the wire tail to get that loop standing up straight. If the loop is open then you’ll use the chain nose pliers to grasp the loop and wiggle it back and forth (just like opening and closing a jump ring).
Now I hope you will practice making some of these headpins and simple dangles.