Designer Wire Wrapped Clasp Hooks

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This is a design tutorial by Judy Larson which first appeared on The Beading Gem's Journal - www.beadinggem.com. Check out the site for free tutorials, featured designers, inspirations and so much more.

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Designer Wire Wrapped Clasp Hooks

  1. 1. Designer Hooks Judy Larson Findings can make or break a design and most tutorials for them are usually for simple hooks and eyes. This designer-style hook can be made to match and enhance any project, from bracelets to necklaces. In fact, if you turn the hook portion into an eye loop, this would make a great earring finding! Just add a dangle! The hook on this 5/8” wide and 1-3/16” long finding bends to the back so is hidden. You can turn the hook and the connecting ring one half turn to use when the loops you connect to must be flat and visually part of the design, as in the hook to the right. Materials: 4” of 18 gauge round wire up to 36” of 28 gauge round wire Variety of beads from 2mm-5mm or one 1011mm flat coin bead Tools: Flat, chain and round nose pliers 6-Step barrel pliers Flush cutter ½” mandrel Ultra fine point Sharpie marker Ruler Directions: It is important to read through the directions before starting. Step 1: Straighten and cut a 4” piece of 18 gauge round wire. Mark the wire 1½” in from one end. Step 2: Centering the mark between the two smallest steps on the 6-step barrel pliers, bend the two wire ends down on either side of Step 2 of the pliers. 1
  2. 2. Step 3: Cross the wire ends, using your fingers to push the crossed portion of the wires up to the barrel of the pliers. This creates an eye that can be used as an attachment point to any project. Step 4: Place the eye on a ½” mandrel. Bend the wire ends around the mandrel. Make sure that the wire that comes from below the eye goes above the other wire on the opposite side of the mandrel. Step 5: Use the tip of your round nose pliers to make a small loop on the end of the shorter wire. This loop should end up exactly opposite the larger loop created in Steps 2 and 3. A line drawn from the center of one loop to the center of the other loop should create two equal halves. Notice that it does not make any difference which way the wires are crossed. Just make sure that your bent wire looks like one of those below at this point. The small upper loop is on what will be the front of the hook. Step 6: Grasp the long wire tail between Step 3 and 4 of the 6-Step barrel pliers. Make sure that Step 4 is on top and large wire loop is pushed up to Step 3 of the pliers. Use your fingers to push the long wire tail up and over Step 4 of the pliers until the wire tip almost touches the large circle. 2
  3. 3. Step 7: At this point, you need to decide how you will fill the interior of the large circle. Single Bead: If you would like to use a single flat 10-11mm bead, you will need a 3” piece of 28 gauge wire to attach it on either end of the hook. This is straightforward so the directions for this are not shown here. Bent Wire Design: A: Sketch out the size of the interior of the large circle. Draw out a few designs. Decide on one. Initials are a fabulous way to add your mark to your designs. This tutorial gives directions for the heart. B: Straighten and cut a 2” piece of 18 gauge wire. Mark the center. Make a 90 degree bend on that mark. Both sides MUST be of equal length. C: Use Step 4 of the 6-step barrel pliers to make a curl on each wire end. You will have to bend the first side out of the way to do the second side. D: Use the tips of your round nose pliers to curl the ends of the wires into loose spirals. 3
  4. 4. E: Straighten and cut a 30” piece of 28 gauge round wire. Bend it in half. Center the lower point of the heart just above the small lower loop of the hook frame. Slide one 28 gauge wire end through the loop and the other wire end through the heart. F: Wrap each wire end once around the heart and the lower loop, ending on the back. This should create three wraps showing on the front of the hook. G: Continue wrapping up the side of the large circle, pushing the wraps together as you progress. When you reach the point where the side of the heart touches the edge of the large circle, make three wraps to secure the heart. Continue up the outer edge of the large circle. H: Continue wrapping the outer circle until the wrapping is below the center of the small upper loop. Pull the wrap wire through the loop and back down into the center of the large circle. Do this three times. Trim the wrap wire off and press the end into the space where the two 18 gauge wires cross. I: Repeat Steps G and H to wrap the other side. When you reach the end, pull the wrap wire to the back and around the hook, wrapping the hook 6 times. Trim the wrap wire off and press the cut end into the 18 gauge hook wire. 4
  5. 5. J: Use the tips of your round nose pliers to make a small loop at the end of the hook. Bend the hook to the back side as shown. You will want to lift the hook end slightly away from the circle and heart to make it easier to slide onto a ring or loop on the other end of the project you will be using it on. You can be done now, or add a decorative bead as shown in the next few steps. K: Center a 3mm bead on a 6” piece of 28 gauge wire. Bend the wire down on either side of the bead. L: Slide the wire ends into the loops on either side of the top of the heart. M: Cross the 28 gauge wires and pull the ends back up through the small heart loops. Pull one wire end through the bead and back down through the small loop to the back of the hook. Pull it back to the front. N: Use the tips of your round nose pliers to gently press the 28 gauge wires together below the bead. O: Wrap the each wire 4-5 times tightly around the pressed in wires at the base of the bead, creating a “nest.” Trim the wires off and tuck the ends under the base of the wire wraps. 5
  6. 6. Bead Filled Circle Hook: A: Bend the hook wire down into its final position behind the circle. This will help you decide where to position the smaller beads. If you put larger beads behind the hook, you will have to bend it farther away from the back of the hook, which is less streamlined. B: Use the tips of your round nose pliers to make a small loop at the end of the hook. Bend the hook slightly away from the back of the circle. This will make it easier to wrap the beads into place. You can press it back down later, if needed. C: Choose the bead you would like to use to fill your circle. Notice that the hook end and small bottom loop on the gemstone filled circle are twisted ¼ turn so they can be connected to loops that need to lay flat. D: Cut an 18” piece of 28 gauge wire. Secure the end of the wire by wrapping it 10-12 times around one side of the frame at the bottom of the hook. E: Pull the wrap wire through the lower loop, then through the large loop. Repeat this three to four times. 6
  7. 7. F: Continue to wrap down the other side 10-12 times. From here on, work from the back but continually check the front. Slide beads onto the wrap wire. In this case, the bead sizes are 2.5mm, 4mm and 2.5mm. Pull the wrap wire to the opposite side of the large circle. Add or subtract beads as needed. G: Wrap large circle 6-8 times, going toward the top of the hook. Find beads to fit the space and slide them onto the wrap wire. In this case the beads sizes are 5mm, 3mm, 4mm and 2.5mm. Pull the wire to the opposite side of the circle. Note: Because a domed effect was desired with these beads, the length of strung beads for this step was just a bit long. This was not the case with the gemstone bead hook. H: Wrap the outer frame up toward the hook. When you reach the small loop, secure the front and back 18 gauge wires together by wrapping 3 times through the loop. I: Wrap 5-6 times down the side of the outer circle frame. Pull the wire to the left. Find a bead to fit the space to the left and slide it onto the wrap wire. In this case, the bead size is 3mm. J: Wrap the wire around the beaded wire to the left of the bead you just put on. You will be wrapping between two beads to hold the wrap wire in place. Find a bead to fit the space to the left and slide it onto the wrap wire. In this case, the bead size is 3mm. 7
  8. 8. K: Wrap the frame 6-10 times down toward the bottom of the circle. Pull the wire to the right. Find beads to fit the space and slide them onto the wrap wire. In this case, the bead sizes are 5mm and 2.5mm. Wrap the wire around the beaded wire to the right of the beads you just put on. You will be wrapping between two beads to hold the wrap wire in place. L: Pull the wrap wire to the right. Find a bead to fit the space slide it onto the wrap wire. In this case, the bead size is 4mm. Wrap the outer frame 6-8 times up toward the hook. M: Pull the wire toward the center of the circle. Find beads to fit the space and slide them onto the wrap wire. In this case, the bead sizes are 4mm and 2.5mm. Secure the wrap wire end by wrapping it several times on a wire between two beads. Trim the wire tail and tuck the end between two beads. N: Gently push the beads toward the outside of the hook to create a slight dome effect. For the gemstone version you will not do this. O: Adjust the hook so that it is almost flush with the back of the beaded section. It only needs to be pulled out far enough that you will be able to hook it to the eye end of the project you use it on. 8

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