Creating your own custom jewelry can be a fun and profitable hobby. You can create unique designs to go with a favorite outfit. You can make custom pieces to sell at trade shows. The only limit to what you can make is your imagination.
When it comes to making jewelry, you need a wide array of tools at your disposal. Standard tools in your kit should include various pliers, wire cutters, and rulers. You also need this type of knife for your hobby that is comfortable in your hands. Each tool plays a significant role in bringing your ideas to life.
As there are many different tools and ways to make your jewelry, you might be wondering what kind of pieces you can make with these tools. The tools discussed below allow you to make necklaces, bracelets, and earrings.
What Tools Do You Need to Make Custom Jewelry?
No matter what pieces of jewelry you plan to create, there are some basic tools you should have on hand.
When it comes to making jewelry, you need to have several sets of pliers at your disposal. Round-nose pliers are commonly used in jewelry making. They have a rounded nose that tapers to the point and are perfect for making loops out of wires. As the nose is tapered, you can use this one tool to make several different loop sizes. Larger loops are made by wrapping the wire closer to the handle, while smaller loops come from wrapping the wire closer to the nose.
Flat-nose pliers don’t have a tapered tip or smaller area to make gripping jewelry wire easier. It would be easy to determine that this tool is a non-essential part of your jewelry-making toolbox. These pliers are good to keep on hand for jewelry making, however. You can use them in concert with another pair of pliers to help manipulate the wire into the shapes you want.
Chain-nose pliers are easily mistaken for needle-nose pliers, which may already be in your household toolbox. While the tips are shaped the same way as needle-nose pliers, a chain nose has a flat surface on the inside, not a serrated one. They allow you to grip things without leaving jagged marks on the surface.
As with round-nose pliers, a wire cutter is an essential part of your jewelry-making toolbox. You don’t have to purchase them from a hobby store. You can get this tool at almost any hardware store or may already have them in your household toolbox.
However, if you work with memory wire instead of traditional wire, you need special wire cutters. Regular wire cutters can get damaged when cutting memory wire.
All jewelry makers need to have a sturdy hobby knife available. Hobby knives can help you to carve intricate shapes into thin pieces of metal or wood. You can also use it to cut pieces of suede or leather that you plan to use as part of your finished pieces.
The hobby knife you use should fit comfortably in your hand. You may want to go with a pointed tip over a round one for tougher material like wood or leather. Always make sure you use a sharp blade, as dull ones are dangerous. There are finger-friendly blades available to make it less likely that you’ll cut yourself while working.
Crimping tools are essential for any jewelry maker who wants to add bead stoppers or crimp beads into place. While you may have heard that a flat nose or chain nose plier can work, they aren’t really suitable for the job. These tools can leave a sharp edge that could scratch the skin and looks unsightly.
A crimping tool has special notices that flatten and round the beads onto the wire. The more prominent notch towards the plier’s tip can also help shape the bead if it becomes a bit too flattened during the process.
A ruler helps you to cut pieces straight and at the appropriate length. You can use any ruler available and don’t have to have one specific for jewelry making. However, you may find that using a graphing ruler or a clear acrylic ruler might be your best option.
How to Make Jewelry
There is no one way to make jewelry. While you may use wire for necklaces or bracelets, others will use chains. You may want to use plastic or metal, or even leather. Each of these materials requires a unique way to work with it. The technique depends on the design you wish to make.
No matter which material you use, if you are making a solid piece, like a bangle bracelet, you must connect all the pieces to be a finished design. You can choose to use a knotting technique to keep the beads in place. You could also choose to string them instead. If you want something with a unique pattern, you may consider using a loom to weave your beads together.
Before you start making jewelry pieces, gather all the necessary tools into a jewelry-making toolbox. This way, you can have all the equipment needed to sit and begin creating. Let your imagination take you wherever you want to go.