Friday, November 8, 2013

Jewelry Techniques: Exploring Coiling

You may have noticed that most of my jewelry pieces are unique - I rarely make more than one of the same design.  You may have also noticed that I seem to lack a style - or maybe that my style morphs or jumps between techniques quite frequently!  I can't help it - I love all the jewelry making techniques, so I do flit from one to another throughout the year....

My first coils!  They add that "something" the design needed....
My husband calls these "Princess Leia Earrings" - can you spot why?!

But I also advance my skills in several areas each year.  Right now, I'm exploring wire coils.  I've seen beautiful jewelry made with coils for years, but hadn't tried it myself.  I'm not sure what changed this year, but I've begun playing with coils in my earring designs.  I think I chose earrings because they are generally small projects (when compared to wire bracelets or necklaces....) AND I have to make 2 matching pairs!  That is excellent practice - repetitive AND identical techniques!

Next:  Twisted Coils Earrings - made with twisted wire.

I haven't dove into anything too complicated yet, but here are my budding designs with coiled wire - many of them have used twisted wire for a different, more decorative look.  I've coiled all my wire by hand, but I can see the benefit of a coiling gizmo or drill with mandrel if I was going to make any large scale designs with coiled wire!

Mermaid Knot Earrings - I brought in beads and layers!

I've also found that twisting my own wire with the help of my 4 year old is surprisingly fun for both of us!  It's not as hard to get the same amount of twist in each wire as I thought it would either - just go slow the last couple turns.

Untitled - Coiled Coils Bracelet.  My most ambitious coiling project yet!

I've seen the amazing coiled knots and coiled beads and pendants and bracelets and and and!  I know I have a ways to go polishing my skills with coils, but this has been a wonderful start.  Having fun is important too - it encourages me to keep going!

Keep Going & Happy Creating!

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