Saturday, 23 April 2011

Necklace using plastic coated wire and Friendly Plastic

I am frequently asked how to do the wire necklaces and earrings which I display on the exhibitions.  Whilst I explain what to do I know many of you do not remember by the time you get home when you have seen so many things.

Start by cutting some odd triangles (these two are Purple Friendly Plastic and Orange Copper Friendly Plastic).  I did use more than shown here as I got carried away!
Make your basic shape with the plastic coated wire.  I use Plastic Coated wire because when the Friendly Plastic is hot it will fuse to the plastic on the wire when it cools - particularly as these are only small pieces of Friendly Plastic.  You will see that I cheat here and thread the jump ring on before I start (it saves the hassle at the end!).

Move the jump ring out of the way and add the first piece of Friendly Plastic.  Heat it using the low setting on your heat gun if it has 2 settings.
Have a bowl of cold water ready so that when you heat the plastic you can press it down (the wire is obviously quite springy at this stage).  A needle tool will also help to hold the wire down whilst you are heating it so that you do not burn your fingers!  When using your fingers try to avoid pressing the plastic too hard with your fingers on the wire - you do not want to press through to the black backing.

Having got the first piece in you can then add a couple of more pieces together.   This photo was taken when 4 pieces of Friendly Plastic had been heated and the rest were then added in one go.

The finished piece - the indentations were done with a ball ended embossing tool whilst the plastic was still warm.

Another example of the Friendly Plastic on the plastic cloated wire - this is one of the exhibition samples and the back has been coloured with a dark nail varnish to neaten it.

P.S. You can tell the main exhibition season has finished as I have had time to do this!  Looking forward to tomorrow and Easter Monday off and spending some time in the garden.

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