Collector’s craft book
You can make the attractive bead bracelet shown here by simply wrapping silver wire around a tin can and threading the wire with colored beads.
Hanging silver earrings
From a 3/8″ hard wood dowel, saw out two circles 1/8″ thick. File and sand wood smooth. Cement circles to cups of sterling silver earring backs. Stain, then rub wood with clear wax. With pliers bend two 4 1/2″ strips of sterling silver round wire, 18 B & S gauge, to shape shown above. Circle formed by wire will have diameter of about 3/4″. Slip wire through ring in each earring back. Flatten ends of wire from point where wires cross to tips by hammering them on a metal surface. File edges, smooth with steel wool, emery paper.
Coil bead bracelet
This bracelet will make a delightful gift for teenagers. Wind a 3 foot strip of sterling silver round wire, 12 B & S gauge, around a tin can with a diameter of 2 1/2″ to 3″. When wire is removed from form, it will spring open about 1/2″. Try it on; if it’s too big, wind around form again, and it will only spring back 1/4″. Thread beads on one end of wire, alternating two colors. If bead holes are small, enlarge with a drill. Flatten ends of wire by hammering them on a metal surface. File edges, smooth with steel wool, emery paper.
Silver bar pin
This modern jumbo size bar pin will keep all your straying scarves in place. File each end of a 6″ strip of sterling silver square wire, 8 B & S gauge. Smooth with steel wool and emery paper. Use a pinback that has a patch and attach it to the bar with soft solder.
Bead and silver necklace
Cut a leather thong to choker length. Allow an extra 3″ to make fastening. Knot one end, and string with tubular bamboo beads in assorted colors. Turn back other end of thong in a loop, securing the end by wrapping it with thread several times. With a jeweler’s saw, cut five 3″ strips of sterling silver square wire, 18 B & S gauge. With pliers, bend one end of each silver strip, leaving small opening to slip over thong. File edges, smooth with steel wool and emery paper. Attach the silver to the front of thong at four-bead intervals and close openings with pliers.
Hanging bead earrings
You can cut these as long or as short as you like. For size shown here: with pliers bend two 3″ strips of sterling silver round wire, 18 B & S gauge, in “V’s”. Slip “V’s” through rings of sterling earring backs with half ball trim. Thread beads on each end of wires and flatten wire tips by hammering them on a metal surface. File edges, smooth with steel wool and emery paper.
This bracelet takes just a few minutes to make. Carefully bend a 15″ strip of sterling silver square wire, 10 B & S gauge, around a tin can with a 2 1/2″ to 3″ diameter. Be sure to keep wire flat against can while bending. File edges, smooth with steel wool, emery paper.
Whether you use silver in wire, disks or sheets, there’s no limit to the striking and beautiful designs you can achieve.
Sunburst pendant can also be worn as a decorative fob on a belt or skirt band. With scriber and steel ruler, mark the lines of the design on a 2″ diameter sterling silver disk, 18 B & S gauge. With a nail make a slight indentation at center of disk. Drill through center and saw through the scribed lines, working from center out. Smooth center hole with a needle file; rub insides of lines with emery paper. At edge of disk, make indentation with nail; drill hole and slip in jump ring. Knot one end of a leather thong; insert thong through jump ring. Turn back the other end of thong in a loop, securing the end by wrapping it with thread several times.
Silver star pin
Abstract starfish design adds distinction to this silver pin. Bend three 2-3/4″ strips of sterling silver rectangular wire, 1/8″ x 18 gauge, in “V’s” as shown above. File edges, smooth with steel wool, emery paper. Use soldering torch to join “V’s” and to attach pinback.
If you have never worked with hard solder, you may have difficulty making star as a pin. To avoid hard solder, you can make star as a pendant. To do this, join the loops with jeweler’s cement or soft solder. With a nail, make an indentation at the edge of one strip, drill through it, and then slip in a jump ring.
Enlarge diagram to make pattern. With scriber, mark outline of pattern on 2″-square sheet of sterling silver, l8 B & S gauge. Saw out earrings, file edges, smooth with steel wool and emery paper. With jeweler’s cement or soft solder attach sterling silver earring backs at the point marked X on the diagram.
Sources for silver
Sterling silver comes in wire lengths, disks and sheets. Silver and tools are available at craft shops, or can be ordered from Allcraft Tool & Supply Company.