Designing with Decorative Rings
by Katie Hacker
Sponsored by: Beadalon®
In today’s Beading Lesson, we will show you how to use decorative rings. They add a designer look to even the simplest jewelry projects.
There are three main styles of rings: closed rings that are solid all the way around, jump rings that have an opening on one side and split rings that are similar to a key ring.
Solid rings come in different styles, including these smooth oval and bumpy circle rings. We used jump rings to connect both of these styles to make a pair of glamorous earrings. The bumpy circle mimics the sparkle of the CZ Gem Drops and the large smooth oval adds a contemporary look while drawing the eye downward. You can also cut closed rings to make them more versatile.
Jump rings are available in many different sizes and shapes. We used twisted jump rings to form the center chain on this earring. The twisted jump rings mimic the look of the twisted wire filigree in the earring component. For this simple bracelet, eye pins are used to make bead links. Attach a bead link in the center of an oval ring using a twisted jump ring on each end.
You can also use a jump ring making tool to create your own customized jump rings, like the ones that were used to make this necklace. Combine rings made on different sized mandrels for a more textured look.
To use a jump ring making tool, place the wire end inside the tool and turn the handle. Remove the coil from the mandrel and use a flush cutter to cut the rings apart. When you open a jump ring, always turn one arm to the side. Never open the ends directly apart or the ring won’t close properly. You can also make your own split rings. Skip a few loops and then cut the rings apart. To open a split ring, carefully lift one wire end.
Use twisted wire with the jump ring making tool to make your colorful jump rings even more decorative. This necklace by Fernando DaSilva incorporates handmade twisted jump rings with solid ovals for a fresh, contemporary look.