Saturday, 21 May 2011

Toolbox Talk part 1

I'm not sure I am going to tell my blog anything in the future ... I said I would do a toolbox talk blog at the weekend, now I am concerned I will not full fill your expectations!  After all how do you make talking about pliers interesting?!!

Can you believe I still kept it?!
My interest in wirework jewellery came from spotting Linda Jones book in the local library.  I really fancied the Celtic cross brooch.  Unfortunately I had no understanding of wire, or physics of materials, or the patience to read the instructions.  Here is my first attempt, as you can imagine I stomped off and sulked.

Some time later I must have decided to give it another go, but I don't recall the length of the break.

So here is my guide to how to get it right first time (well have a better chance of getting it right).

The first and most essential piece of equipment for wireworking is pliers.  I struggled to find the right pliers and in the end bought a set of 8 pliers.  But in truth I only use 5.

The round nosed pliers are the starting point for so many pieces. Curling the wire around the pliers, get it wrong and you are making an oval shape, get it right and beautiful spiral begins to form.

The second pair of pliers is your flat nosed pliers.  These pliers can form sharp angles in your work, but they are also used to grip the wire as you curve spirals.  Unlike normal flat nosed pliers, the mouth is smooth, so that it doesn't mark the work.

The final pliers you need are wire cutters.  Ideally you need good sharp pliers, which allow you cut close to your work. 

If your interest in wirework jewellery making continues,  you will wish to add and improve on your pliers set.  Adding nylon coated pliers to avoid scratching the wire, notched round nosed pliers to mass produce jump rings, angled pliers for awkward pieces etc. etc.

Do I have all the pliers I want yet? Definately not.
Do I have favourite pliers? Definately
Do I think I could use someone elses pliers? Ooo, no, I'd feel guilty.

Pliers are all you need to start you on your journey into wirework jewellery, but below is a second toolbox talk, explaining about dowels and hammering your work.

No comments:

Post a Comment