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Metal Wrap Beads

I'm always on the lookout for variations I can give my bangles and I came across some paper wrap beads recently and thought a metal version might work well on a bangle. I've never made paper beads but they start off as a long thin triangle shaped piece of paper that is then wrapped onto a thin rod and glued to create a bead.

Here's my attempt at a metal version. It's a bit long-winded and clumsy as I was making it up as I went along! {I've since worked out a much simpler way of doing it too :D}

I started with some 24g/0.5mm copper sheet that I rolled through the rolling mill to approx 0.35mm thickness. I cut out three different shapes for the beads and annealed them to soften the metal.

Using my fingers and a mallet I started to curl the end of the copper strip around a scrap piece of copper wire. I decided that the end needed to be fixed to the copper wire to make it easier to wrap the rest of the strip tightly around the wire.

So I flowed a small piece of solder in the curled part of the copper strip and another bit of solder at the end.

Ready for soldering to the wire.

After soldering the end to the wire I pickled the copper and wrapped the strip around the wire to form the bead.

The three different bead shapes after I soldered the end down and cleaned them up.
 I like the look of them and think the squared end I gave them makes a change from the normal pointed end you see on lots of these type of beads.

I think a bangle with three or four beads soldered in place around it is going to look nice especially using silver beads with copper and bronze bangles. I've since worked out a much less fiddly way to attach the end of the strip to the wire and also will need to add some solder along the length of the bead strip so the whole bead is soldered in place and doesn't wiggle sideways once the bead is wrapped around the wire and end soldered.

I'm keen to get cracking on making some bead bangles which I'll do once I clear my current orders so watch this space!

In the meantime I made myself a bead template to speed up the process and make things easier.

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  1. Amazing idea Tracy! I love the look of the paper wrapped beads. This method looks fantastic with metal.

  2. I made similar metal some time ago but soon gave it up as I didn't like gluing the ends and I didnt think of soldering them until I read this post

  3. Love this! Beautiful choices :) I have just done a post on my new blog about statement jewellery and would love for you to check it out :) My blog is called The Kara Edit and you can find it at Thanks xxx

  4. Great idea, I have to try this! Thank you! :)


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