I learned how to make a bead cluster probably a year ago. I used it to make Pearl Cluster Earrings. It's one of my favorite techniques.
I originally was going to make a set of earrings with several clusters, but as I finished a few of the clusters, I thought, why not make a ring? I've never made a wire wrapped ring before, but I'm pleased with the result.
How to Make a Bead Cluster
To begin, I'll share how to make the cluster. I put together this collage a while ago, but never shared it. Hence the different color beads.
2 - Insert the wire from the right side through the bead on the left
3 - Pull tight
4 - Add two beads to the left strand and one bead to the right strand
5 - Insert the wire from the right side through the bead on the left
6 - Pull tight
7 - Add two beads to the left strand and one bead to the right strand
8 - Again, insert the wire from the right side through the bead on the left
9 - Pull tight
10 - Add one bead to each side
11 - Insert each wire through the beginning bead, in opposite directions.
12 - Pull tight and it will roll up into a ball, or cluster
13 - Tie in a knot and secure knot with a dab of E6000
How to Make Bead Cluster Earrings
You will need:
2 bead clusters
The earrings were very simple to make. Create two bead clusters. Attach to an earring with a jump ring.
How to make a Bead Cluster RingYou will need:
3 bead clusters
20 gauge wire
28 gauge wire
something close you your ring size to wrap around
The ring was a bit more complicated, but doable. Since this was my first time making a wire wrapped ring, and I wasn't sure exactly what I was doing, I didn't take any pictures of the steps. Here's what I did:
I started with 20 gauge wire. I found a highlighter that was the same diameter as my finger. Using the highlighter to create a perfect circle, I began to wrap the wire around it.
I wrapped two full wraps. On the third wrap I added 3 bead clusters. Then I continued to wrap two more times.
My starting and ending points of the wire were at the bottom of the ring. Then using the 28 gauge wire, I wrapped all the wires together at the bottom of the ring. I tucked the end wires underneath as tightly as I could.
What do you think? Is this technique something you'd like to try?
Take a look at my coordinating Pear Necklace with Swarovski Crystals.