Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace (Tutorial)

by Rena Klingenberg.

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

A curvy, abstract wire pendant is the focal element of this eye-catching necklace.

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace – tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

The wire pendant measures about 2.75″ (7cm) wide x 3.3″ (8.5cm) high.

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

We’ll do two unusual things while making this necklace:

  • We’ll work directly from our roll of wire, waiting till we’re finished to cut the wire.
  • We’ll avoid tool marks on our wire . . . by not using tools. 🙂

Supplies:

  • 14 gauge soft round wire – I used about 17.75″ (45cm) of brass wire to make the curvy focal of this necklace.
    You may want to use aluminum or copper wire instead of brass if your fingers aren’t strong.
    Brass wire for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg
  • A Sharpie marker (which we’ll use as a tool, not for marking).
  • Wire cutter that’s designed to cut 14 gauge wire (I used a Xuron cutter that’s made to cut memory wire).
    Don’t ruin a cutter that’s not made to handle 14 gauge wire!
  • Jewelry file or cup bur for smoothing and rounding your wire ends.
  • Chain – enough to make a necklace of your desired length.
  • 2 Jump rings – for attaching the chain to your wire focal pendant.
  • 2 pair of pliers (chain nose / flat nose) for opening and closing your jump rings.
  • Jeweler’s steel block and plastic, nylon, or rubber hammer for straightening and hardening your finished wire piece.
    Jeweler's Hammer and Steel Block - Rena Klingenberg
  • Optional: Dome-face chasing hammer – for flattening parts of your finished wire piece.
    Dome-face chasing hammer - Rena Klingenberg

How to Make the
Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace:

As I mentioned above, we’ll work from our roll of wire instead of cutting off a piece of wire that’s a specific length.

So we’ll start out by using a wire cutter to trim a tiny bit off the end of the wire, to make a nice flat end that we can easily smooth off:

Trimming wire end for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Use your jewelry file or cup bur to smooth and round this wire end:

Filing wire end for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now we’ll start shaping the wire into our “dangerously curvy” centerpiece.

Heavy gauges of soft wire can easily be dented by pliers.

So just for fun we’ll use a Sharpie marker to shape our wire, resulting in a finished wire focal piece that’s completely dent-free.

Start by using your fingers to curve your wire end around your Sharpie marker to make a teardrop-shaped loop:

Making a teardrop loop for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now your wire should look like this:

Looped end for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Move a little farther down your wire and curve the wire around your Sharpie to make a second teardrop-shaped loop:

Shaping wire for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now your wire should look like this:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Move a little farther down your wire and use your Sharpie to make another upside-down teardrop shaped loop:

Shaping wire for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Your wire should look like this:

Making wire focal for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now move a little farther along your wire and use your fingers to curve your wire around the Sharpie to make another teardrop loop:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Your wire should now look like this:
Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

This time, go significantly farther along your wire, and use your Sharpie to create a very tall upside-down teardrop loop:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now your wire should look like this:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Move down the wire a bit and make a sixth teardrop loop with your Sharpie.

Now your wire should look like this:

Teardrop loops for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now we’ll make the final teardrop loop.

Use your Sharpie to make an upside-down teardrop loop that’s about the same size as the first loop you made:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now your wire should look something like this:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

It’s time to cut your wire.

Use your wire cutter to make the cut here:

Clipping wire for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Use your jewelry file or cup bur to make a nice smooth, rounded end on your wire:

Filing wire end for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Then gently bend the last inch of the wire so that your newly filed wire end touches the rest of the pendant.

Now your Dangerous Curves wire piece should look something like this:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

It’s time to straighten and harden your wirework using a plastic, rubber, or nylon hammer and steel jeweler’s block.

Hammer one side of your wire piece all over; then turn it over and hammer the second side all over:
Hammering wire for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

If you like, you can add a bit of extra style to your wire piece by using a domed chasing hammer to flatten parts of your design:

Hammer-flattening wire for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

After hammering, use your Sharpie marker to shape up any of your curves that may have come open during hammering.

Now your finished piece should look like this:

Wire focal piece for Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

It’s time to add the chain and turn this wire artistry into a necklace!

I used a single length of chain that’s long enough so that I can slip the necklace over my head without using a clasp.

Use jump rings to attach your chain to the end loops on your dangerously curvy wire pendant:

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

. . . and your necklace is finished.

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

And because of the way we created the wire piece, we had no wasted wire – and no tool marks on the finished piece! 🙂

Dangerous Curves Wire & Chain Necklace - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Also see Marcia’s lovely innovation for this necklace design – Marcia’s Dangerous Curves.

Want to Learn the Basics of
Designing Your Own Wire Jewelry?

Design and Make Artistic Jewelry Components Class In my Design and Make Artistic Jewelry Components video class, you’ll learn how to get great ideas for wire jewelry designs – and then follow my easy system for turning those ideas into successful pieces of jewelry.

By the end of this online video class, you’ll be designing and making your own artistic earwires, clasps, connectors, and pendant bails.

You’ll also learn my tips for making wire jewelry more easily, with more professional looking results.

 

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