Jewelry Tool Questions – Bail Making Pliers, Hammer & Anvil

by Ani. (Cooperstown, NY) I am beginning to learn freeform wire art in my jewelry making. I have two questions: (1) The book I’m reading advises to get medium size bail making pliers. That seems to be small to me. Any advice? (2) When buying a hammer and anvil, what should I be looking for? […]

Alternative Sources for Silver and Copper

by Carl Charette. (Metro Phoenix, Arizona USA) I turned a mineral, crystals and precious gems hobby of 30+ years into a new hobby of jewelry design and manufacture using silver, copper, and brass. I quickly found out the high costs of the metals I used and needed cheaper sources than the usual big supply houses. […]

Jewelry Wire Storage: suggestions please

by Autumn Boutcher. (North Carolina) How do you store your jewelry wire? I use a combination of bare copper, bare bronze and stainless steel. I’ve tried individual bags, putting it all in one big bag and in a tray. I have Artistic Wire spools which fit in small condiment containers, but also regular size coils […]

Using Dark Annealed Steel Wire

by Gail. (Trail, British Columbia, Canada) I have been following Jewelry Making Journal for a long time and have just been given some dark annealed steel wire. I believe it is 20 gauge. I would like to know if there are any tips or tricks when using this wire for jewelry. I have read where […]

Is There a Way to Test Stainless Steel Findings?

by Irene. (Petaling Jaya, Malaysia) I’m new to jewelry making and I’m thinking of using stainless steel chains and earwires because they won’t tarnish, but I’m wondering if there is any way to test whether they really are stainless steel? I live in South-East Asia so it is expensive for me to buy online from […]

Finding Suppliers of Rare Components

by Autumn Boutcher. (United States) How do you find suppliers for those rare components? Word of mouth, internet search, phone book…some combination therein? I have a customer asking about some hard-to-find beads, and it’s making me consider how I approach searching or suppliers. Normally I do ad somewhat intensive internet search. But these beads, along […]

Can You Help Identify This Stone?

by Kristin Moore. (United States) Can anyone help me identify this type of stone? It was in the stash of jewelry supplies I inherited after my mom passed away. She did not have it labeled. I just made a necklace with it that I’d like to sell but I’d like to be able to accurately […]

Easy Way to Open a Split Key Ring (Tutorial)

by Rena Klingenberg. Have you ever broken a fingernail or injured yourself trying to open a split key ring? Some of them are so sturdy you can hardly slide a key onto them. But here’s a simple everyday item that can easily open this type of key ring: All you need is a regular staple […]

How Do I Fly with Jewelry Supplies and Tools?

by Christine Sigman. (United States) Due to some changes in our situation, I am going to be traveling regularly between our new home in Texas and our old one in Massachusetts. I will continue taking jewelry classes and workshops in Boston whenever I can. My question is, how is it to travel with jewelry supplies […]

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