How to Make Jewelry - Selecting Your Wire Tools

Adding to the last two posts on general beading tools and how to make jewelry, this post will focus specifically on tools that are useful when your beading projects are dealing with making jewelry with wire. As skill progresses a beader will eventually try new techniques and variations and that includes the incorporate of wire into jewelry pieces. Jewelry design that incorporates perfected wiring techniques are truly beautiful to behold and display to others.

These tools are ones that I specifically utilize in my wiring projects -- you may even see some tools that you recognize from the previous post on basic beading tools.

I will discuss in this post how they specifically relate to the wiring process since your first introduction was their basic use for all general jewellery making creations.


The awl is a handy tool to have for whenever a project requires holes to be made in metal wire or any other metal pieces in the project. An awl is basically a steel spike with its tip sharpened to a fine point. The awl is a simple tool with which holes can be punctured in a variety of materials, or existing holes can be enlarged.

It is a staple of a lot of crafts including beaded jewelry, which you're reading here, as well as leather working, shoe making and just sewing heavy materials such as canvas.

For beading purposes, its simply used for punching holes in metal materials or any other object that requires a precise hole placed into it.

Bench Block

Since you will be dealing with a very tough opponent, the metal and wiring, it is always good to have a bench block that will help protect your workspace as well as providing a solid space where you can pound out the metal objects and apply the force that is required to manipulate metal.
Think of the bench block to wiring jewelry as a cutting board is to a chef.
There are many different types and varieties of bench blocks but there is no need to go to extravagant to begin with. For example, has a very basic block that I have used before with great success.

Round nose pliers

The round nose pliers have now made their second appearance! You will recall the the design of the round nose pliers are perfect for manipulating the shapes of the wire for handcrafted jewelry. They can be used to create loops or rings.
Purchasing a pair of these pliers will open up the opportunities of what you can create from wiring jewelry.

Flush cutters

The flush cutters are a tool that are specifically designed for jewelry wiring and have already been mentioned as an essential tool to have, but their use will not be fully realized until you begin wiring.

Probably the one point I'd like to make is consider having two different flush cutters, one for the smaller gauge wires and another for the heavier gauges. The reason for this recommendation is that using the same flush cutter with heavy and small gauges can damage the cutter and make its effectiveness in clean cutting on the smaller gauges very poor.

Ball-peen hammer
Ball-peen hammers are divided into two classes: hard-faced and soft-faced. The head of a hard-faced hammer is made of heat treated forged high-carbon steel or alloy steel.

They are used when there is the danger of damaging a striking surface. More specifically, the ball-peen is used to flatten out metal objects and for the creation of textured designs of the metal pieces for the jewelry designs.

Metal file

The metal file is a tool that will come into use whenever your other cutting tools have begun to lose their edge and create jagged cuts and you need to file the edge down to something smoother.

Chain nose pliers

In the last couple of posts I've mentioned how the chain nose pliers are a versatile tool for use in beading. This still holds true even when your beading projects begin to include wiring in them. The basic uses for them on are for closing various clasps you've added to your jewelry piece or closing loops.

Fortunately, a few of these tools are simply a repeat from the basic tool kit you would want to have as an amateur beader. On top of that the additional tools should not put too much of a financial hit to your budget as you're building your tools. 

Any one of these items can be purchased relatively affordable; there is no need to spend money on expensive tools when a more economical one is available, which is the key when learning how to make jewelry and still have money in the bank.

Wire jewelry always adds a sophisticated look to your work. 
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