Making a hook clasp
Making a hook clasp is easy and inexpensive. It takes some practice, but then again, anything worth doing does. ;)
I like to use 20g wire to make my clasps, but if you have a heavy piece, or use large beads, you can make one in a heavier gauge to match, or a smaller gauge for something delicate. I wouldn't use anything much smaller than 22g wire though....anything lighter might not hold it's shape well.
Begin by cutting about a 5 or 6" piece of wire. Make a bend in the wire about 3/4" from the end. (This measurement will vary depending on how long you want your hook to be. The hook will end up being about half of this measurement, so after you've learned how to do it, you can make them any length you like.) :)
Please excuse the blurry pictures! It's hard to take the pics one handed while holding the wire and pliers with the other hand. lol
Now put the end of your round nose pliers in the bend, and wrap your wire around so it looks like it does in the picture.
Holding the wire on the round nose pliers, take your bent nose pliers and gently squeeze the wires right next to the round nose pliers. Squeeze until the wires cross each other, then squeeze them a little more, so that the wires are now lying next to each other. That's how you get the little loop on the end. Be sure not to make this loop too large, or you'll need a really large ring on the other side of the clasp.
Now grasp the other end right up next to where the short wire ends, and bend the wire straight to the side.
*Place your round nose pliers up against the bend in the wire, and wrap the long wire around the top of your pliers.
*Where you grab with your pliers will determine how large this loop will be. This will be the end that attaches to the bracelet or necklace.
Now bring the wire around to the front to start your wrap. You can take your pliers to roll this loop so that it is centered over the clasp. Be sure that the two wires are lying flat while you wrap around them.
Make at least 2 full wraps so that the end of the short wire can't come out, then clip the wire in the center of the two wires like in picture 2.
Make sure to press your cut end in so that it's not sticking out. I found that the best way to do this is with the end notch on my crimping pliers!
With the clipped part facing up,take your bent nose pliers and make a small bend backwards in the other end. (You can choose to leave this bend out if you want....I just think it looks a little nicer than a straight hook.)
You want your clipped end on the inside of the clasp so that it's not showing, and also so that it doesn't scratch if you don't get your clipped end tucked in good enough. ;)
Now grasp your hook with the round nose pliers, and bend it over, so that the hook is coming down over where you clipped your wire.
I just do this with my fingers.
As I'm bending the hook down, I also bend the wrapped loop back the other way just a little, but of course you can leave it straight. I just like the way it looks, and it seems to hold the ring end of the clasp better. Just play with the shape and see what looks and works best for you. :)
Here's an example.... in the first picture, the loop is left straight, and in the second picture, I bent the loop back a little way. Not much of a difference in the picture, but it makes a difference in how well it holds. :)
Go to the next page for directions on making different loop ends for the clasp.
Please read all the way to the end and look at all the pictures before starting. :)