Our earrings require just beads, pins, earring wires, and jump rings (small wire circles) — but combine for dozens of different looks. Here, all the supplies you need to perk up your ears.
Your choice of bead will determine how the earring is made: Some beads have vertical channels all the way through (as with 1, 2, 6, 13, and 14) and require a pin. Others have holes only through the top (3–5, 9, and 12) and call for jump rings. Small beads (7 and 11) and sequins (10 and 15) can be stacked on a pin or strung on a jump ring.
Various drop beads (1, 8, 9), from $1 each, tohoshoji-ny.com
Mixed-color bugle beads (2, 14), 35 mm, 12 for 1 g, ornabead.com
Stone and teardrop beads (3–7, 11–13), from $1 each, beadsworldusa.com
Sequins (10, 15), $4 for 1,000, mjtrim.com
We used pins with ball heads (16), paddle ends (17), and flathead ends (18). While a bead will sit flush against a flathead pin, ball heads are visible, and paddle ends protrude enough to add visual interest to the earring. (Indeed, they’re pretty enough to dangle, unadorned, in a group.) Order the 2-inch size and snip to the desired length.
Beadalon ball-head pins, $3.50 for 24, michaels.com
Gold paddle pins, 2 inch, 22 gauge, $4 for 80, etsy.com/shop/riversongbeads
Head-pin connectors, by Bead Landing, 2 inch, $3 for 72, michaels.com
The ends of these wires have small loops. Some of the loops (19 and 22–25) can be closed with pliers and can be threaded with a pin directly, but others (20 and 21) require a jump ring. Of course, the shape of the wire will affect the look of the finished earring: More dramatic versions (19 and 20) make for longer, bolder earrings.
Gold earring wire (19), from 25 cents each, and sterling-silver earring wires (20, 21, 24), from $1.50 each, beadsworldusa.com
Fish-hook earring wires (22, 23), by Bead Landing, $3 for 60, michaels.com
Gold vermeil earring wire (25), from $3.50 each, beadsworldusa.com
- Bead or beads
- Wire cutters
- Round-nose pliers
- Slide bead (or beads) onto pin. With wire cutters, cut pin so only about 1/4 inch extends past bead or beads.
- With round-nose pliers, pinch end of pin and, in one continuous motion, curl it around end of pliers; tuck end into bead hole.
- Add to jump ring or earring wire.
Jump Rings How-to
- 2 pairs pliers
- Jump ring
- Bead or earring pin
- With pliers, grip either side of opening of jump ring. Pull one pair of pliers toward you and push the other away.
- Slide on bead, or thread head of pin onto jump ring (make sure bead is facing the right direction). Use pliers to close jump ring.
- Add to earring wire.
Assorted jump rings, by Bead Landing, $3 for 105, michaels.com