Making a wire bail for a front drilled pendant
After I showed this necklace on the About Jewelry Making forum, one of the members asked me if I'd tell her how I made the bail. So I thought I'd write up a tutorial in case anyone else was interested. Thanks Sherrie!
The bail in this tutorial was done quickly, so please, take your time, and do it better than this one! :)
I used 20g Artistic Wire on this, but you may need to use 22g if the hole in your pendant is smaller. To figure out if it will work, try putting 4 pieces of wire through the hole.
I started out with about 6" of wire, and held it in the middle with my pliers and crossed the wires over. If you want to get fancier with your wire ends at the end, make sure you start with a longer piece of wire. ;)
Then I took my bent nosed pliers and gently squeezed the wires right next to where they crossed so that it forms a circle, and the wires are lying right next to each other. ( I couldn't show this part because I couldn't hold both pairs and the camera at the same time.)
Then I put the wire through the hole in the pendant, with the loop in front.
Gently bend your wires around to the front, and go through the loop and the pendant hole. Make sure your wires are lying next to each other and not crossed like this. I straightened them out later, but it's easier to do it right the first time. lol (I warned you this was a quickie!)
After you get the wires pulled through, you can push your loop down flat in the front.
Now find something that is the size you want the bail to be. Since I'm so high tech, I used a Sharpie marker. lol Holding the wires against your mandrel (Sharpie) pull the wires evenly through the hole until they're tight against the mandrel.
I made mine big so that it would be removeable, but of course you can make your bail any size you want. :)
I suppose this could be an optional step, but I wrapped one of the wires around the bail loop just for added security. You can just play around from here, and see what works best for you. :)
Then make whatever kind of coil, or swoopie thing you want with the ends of the wires, and fold them over the front of the pendant. (Since I was doing this quickly, I didn't get my coils nice.)
Now, if you want, you can hang a dangle from the loop. Just have fun with the wire ends, and the dangles and see what happens!
And remember.... be sure your work is MUCH neater than this! :)
Copyright 2008 Ruby's Jewelry Design & Beadwork
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You can pry your bail apart, or leave the wire loops close together.....whichever looks better to you.