Sciaraffa Berlin takes an unusual tact for presenting ways
to make your own designer pendants, and that is to first make
a frame, and then embellish it with items you feel would make
a great design. Left over gemstones? No problem. A few scattered
seed beads? Use them as accents for other gemstones or crystals.
The author starts off with a discussion of safety basics,
materials, beads, gemstones and cabochons, and then the various
tools needed to complete your particular design. She also
includes optional items you may wish to purchase, such as
hammers, a tumbler, etc., but for the beginner, the basic
tools she suggests are sufficient to make most of the designs.
The techniques discussed concentrate on making frames using
wire, and to save on expenses, the author suggests using copper
until the reader is more proficient. Frankly, jewelry made
from this material is quite beautiful and copper is definitely
an economical metal to use. Some items from around the house,
such as pill containers, can also be used to make round frames
for some of the pendants designs. Just fill in the circle
as you wish with gemstones, wire curls, etc.
My favorites are the designs using drilled gemstones, such
as the “Side-drilled Pendant” using a focal gemstone
with small natural pearls, and the “Double Triangle
Twisted Frame”, which is far easier to make than it
sounds. The “Basic Wire Bezel” is exactly that
(basic), but if you haven’t done it before, the author
provides easy step-by-step instructions.
Build Your Own Wire Pendants is a high quality instructive
how-to book from Kalmbach, filled with beautiful full color
photos that will spark your creativity. It’s a definite
keeper for any jewelry designer’s library, no matter
your level of expertise.