I am excited to announce that I am this week's Crafty Superstar over at Cut Out + Keep!  For the next few days I will share here they tutorials I wrote for them.  I haven't written a lot of tutorials so I was super excited to take up the challenge.  Enjoy!

I am all about easy – and when you have a really great pair of beads, you really don’t need to do a whole lot to do something fun and funky.  

The supply list is short:

Two beautiful beads
Chain that fits through the holes of the beads
Two ear wires or wire to make your own

 First, play around with the chain and the beads to decide what length you want your earring.  A trick I use to test earring length and to make sure the chains are the same length are to string them on a wire.  Way easier than counting tiny links!

If you are using ear wires, open the loop on the ear wire, connect one end of the chain, string the chain through the bead, and then connect the other end of the chain to the ear wire loop and close it.  If are want more “swing” or want to add more bling (like the pair at the top left) you can attach everything to a jump ring, and then attach the jump ring to the ear wire.

If you would like to make your own ear wires – which makes matching the chain easier – here are the steps.  I usually start with 6 inches or so of wire.  You can fix it later if it’s too long, but you can never fix it if it’s too short! 

Use chain nose pliers to bend the wire 90 degrees at about the middle of the wire.  Grabbing the “corner” with round nose pliers, wrap one end of the wire around the pliers making a loop. 

String one end of the chain onto the lop, put the chain through the bead, and string the other end of the chain on to the loop.  Grab the loop right under where the wires cross, and wrap the horizontal wire around the vertical wire 2-3 times.  

Trim the excess wire, and then do all of the steps for the second earring.  On both earrings, bend the vertical wire forward.  

Using a wrap and tap plier (or a sharpie pen), bend both wires around.  I like to do this at the same time so that the hooks are similarly sized.  

Cut off excess, and then use a chasing hammer and a block to slightly flatten both sides of the ear wire – this will harden it.  Please be careful to keep your bead and the chain away from the hammer – you don’t want to mush those!  Enjoy!

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