|My Work Area|
Making Wire Wrapping BundlesThis is where we finished off last time. This is a pic of my work area. I do all my wrapping with a lap desk so I'm sat comfortably with all my tools and materials in easy reach.
I have the cabochon, the 4 square wires we cut, 1mm half round wire and my tools. I have laid out a bead mat, ruler, polishing cloths, a reel of red 0.4mm wire, my tool caddy containing - 2 flat nose pliers, wire cutters, round nose pliers, nylon jawed pliers, chain nose pliers, plastic hammer, wire straightener and a fine black permanent marker.
Making bundles of wire beforehand is a great time saver. I usually have a number of different length bundles ready to go in different finishes. You will probably want to measure your wires each time until you get the hang of it and then like me, keep your favourite sizes 'in stock'. I keep mine tidy in plastic tubes.
As I said in an earlier post, I don't like using tape unless I have to so I wrap my bundles with 0.4mm wire of an opposing colour. Tape leaves a sticky residue on wires and can't be used in this way to make up bundles that may not be used for weeks. That is one of the reasons I wrap with wire but it also helps in straightening the wires too. When we come to bending the bundle to create the setting for the gemstone they will also support and guide the bend.
Taking my four wires in my left hand I will hold them in shape and place the wrapping wire a bit proud of the top edge so I can tuck it in afterwards.
I now wrap the wire around five times.
Cut the wire and tidy up with flat nose pliers giving it a firm squeeze. Don't use too much pressure or you may mark your square wires. We don't want to 'fix' the guide wires at this stage as we will be moving them around in the next stages.
Continue to make more wraps until you have a total of six around your square wires. You may find that the wires have a tendency to twist but that can be easily fixed using two flat nose pliers to make them straight again.
Using your ruler, measure and mark the middle with your permanent marker. You will find that it isn't really permanent and can be easily removed if necessary with a cloth and acetate free nail polish remover. This is the stage I will finish at if I am making bundles for future use and put them away. Not knowing how I will use a bundle I can't put the half round wire on as I may use it in several different ways depnding on the type of wrap I want to do, or even use different colour wire for added interest.