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  • angela smith bespoke handmade jewellery

How to make a simple pair of pearl earrings -

If you attend one of my basic jewellery making workshops I will show you in person how to make earrings, however attending one of my workshops isn't an option for most, so I have put together a photographic guide to making two very simple pairs of earrings. I have chosen to make two pairs to show how just by adding one extra element you can change the whole look to a pair of earrings, so I have one plain pair and one more decorative.

Why photos - not video?

Well I have on occasions watched videos to find out how others make their jewellery but when it comes to showing the detail I have found it is often not that clear and I have to watch parts of it over and over again and I often end up none the wiser and working things out for myself. Hopefully with photos the crucial details are shown more clearly.

How to make a simple pair of pearl earrings

You will need a pair of wire cutters, round nosed pliers, snipe or flat nosed pliers, head pins, ear hooks and your choice of beads.

everything you need to make a couple of pairs of pearl bead earrings. with the option of plain or decorative styles
materials and tools needed to make a pair of pearl earrings

Firstly select you headpin

A head pin is a thin blunt metal stick with a flat round base a bit like a pin with no point, they come in varying lengths and thicknesses.

Today I have chosen a short head pin as I am only using a few beads so it saves on waste.

Thread your beads onto the head pin starting with the bead you want at the bottom of the earring. I have kept it very simple with just a glass pearl and small silver bead.

A single glass pearl bead and small silver coloured bead threaded onto a silver plate head pin
single pearl bead and silver ead on headpin

Repeat for second earring

a pair of glass pearl bead earrings waiting to be finished off
two pearl earrings in the making

Once you are happy with your bead order for your earrings you need to trim the headpin down using your wire cutters so you have approximately 1/2 - 3/4 cm of wire left above your top bead. Try to cut the same amount off both pins for an even appearance.

cutting a head pin to the required length before making a loop fot the ear hook
cutting the head pin using wire cutters

Once head pins have been cut down to required length, use your snipe or flat nosed pliers to bend wire approximately 90 degrees away from top bead.

how to create a loop at the top of your bead earrings to slip your ear hook onto
preparing to make a loop for the ear hook

So it looks like this

And repeat for second earring

A ninety degree bend on head pin above top bead of earring ready to make loop
Earring head pin ready to loop

Using your round nosed pliers loop the tip of your wire back towards the hole of the top bead, leaving a small gap

looping the head pin wire towards the top of the bead hole ready for the ear hook
looping the head pin for the ear hook

Repeat with second earring

one head pin looped ready for ear hook to slip in
loop ready to slip the ear hook

Repeat for second earring and then slip ear hook into loop through the gap.

ear hook placed in hook before closing loop and completing the earring
slip in the ear hook

Close loop with snipe nosed pliers, it is important at this stage not to pinch the loop closed, just hold onto tip of wire with the pliers and guide it towards the top bead hole to close the gap and create the loop.

a completed pair of glass pearl and silver bead earrings on a sterling silver ear hook
The finished pair of earrings

For comparison I also made a pair of earrings adding a decorative bead cup on top of the pearl and before the small silver bead

making a pair of vintage style earrings in the same way as the simple pair, just adding a decorative bead cup to sit ontop of the pearl bead and below the small round silver bead.
Making a vintage style pair of glass pearl earrings

And the finished items, plain and simple or decorated vintage vibes - Choose your style!

two pairs of glass pearl earrings. one pair in a plain, simple design and second pair just by adding a bead cup creates a more decorative look to the earring
plain and simple or decorative vintage pearl earrings

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