Glitz Me 101: Basic Findings

Now that you have your tools, you are ready to move on to jewelry “findings.”  These are the basic pieces you will use to put your jewelry together.  Think of them like hardware in cabinet making.  There are MANY uses for each finding, limited only by your creativity.  This post is meant just as an introduction, to make you familiar with each piece.   Your most basic findings include:

Jump rings are small rings used to hook pieces together.  You can find jump rings in many different sizes, metals, and finishes.  As with the rest of the findings, you will want to find the color and finish that suits your project.

Eye pins are long, strait pieces of metal with a small “eye” on one end.   You place a bead on the stem, and the hook is used to connect the bead to another piece.  The strait end is usually  turned into another hook with a pair of round nosed pliers.  Eye pins can be purchased in different gauges and lengths.

Head pins are similar  to eye pins, except one end terminates with a “head”.  That end is not meant to be connected to another piece.  Head pins would be used in a place where a bead would be hanging from something but not have anything connnected to it on the other end, such as an earring.  Head pins can also be purchased in a variety of finishes, gauges, and lengths.  They can also be found with a variety of “heads.”

When creating earrings, there are several different styles of earring wires to choose from.  This is the piece that goes through the ear.  Beads would be attached to these in different ways, depending on the style.

These are just some of the most basic findings that we use regularly.  Our next post will introduce the findings used in making beaded watches.

Glitz Me 101: The Tools

If you are going to be making your own fantastic Glitz, there are a few basic things to know.  Before you can do anything, you will need a good set of tools (find some on our website!).

Not sure what to do with six sets of pliers?

Both bent nose and chain nose pliers are used for similar purposes:  to grab and or hold small pieces.  You can also use these pliers for opening and closing jump rings and chain links.  I use these pliers the most.

Round nose pliers are used for bending and twisting wire.  You will use these almost as much as you will use the bent/chain nose pliers.

Cutting pliers are used for– you guessed it– cutting.

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Crimping pliers are used for attaching “crimp beads” onto the end of wire or other jewelry stringing materials.

Most jewelry items can be created with these five basic tools, a few basic “findings” and your choice of beads and stringing material.  Watch for future posts with more in-depth descriptions of how to use each tool.