How To Make Wire Cages For Round Beads

Silly me!! Didn’t know I could make these cages myself.

I have been buying them!!

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Making these wire cages is quite easy. I found the directions in one of my wire making craft books.

Creating Wire and Beaded Jewelry by Linda Jones.

It is turning out to be my most used wireworking resource.

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My tutorial is based on the results from using 20 gauge wire. It is great practice wire and is forgiving in case you need to unbend, straighten and start over. It is also inexpensive. I got 8 yards for $2.50.

Instructions for making ONE Wire Cage to enclose a 12-14 mm round bead.

Step 1. Cut lengths of 14″ wire. One per wire cage.

Step 2. Making the Swirls. Start at the tip on one end and make a small bend with round nose pliers. (See photo at end of tutorial for tools used in this project.) Now switch to either chain nose pliers or flat nose pliers. Either one will be fine for this step.

Slowly start to form a circle by covering the tip loop with chain nose/flat nose pliers, bending the wire as you turn in as perfect a circle as you can. Make the swirl large enough to cover one side of the bead.

Now start on the other end of the wire. Repeat the same steps and make a swirl on the opposite end of the wire. Make sure the swirls look about even with the same number of revolutions. Leave about 2-2 1/2″ of wire between the swirls.

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Step 3. Making the Hook. Using round nose pliers, find the center of the wire with the swirls facing downward. Hold tight and push up one side and then the other. Refer to photo illustration.

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You are making the “hook” that will serve two purposes. It will cover the center open area of the bead, forming a connection to the side swirls. The hook also creates a loop for attaching the stringing material of your choice.

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Step 4. Enclosing the Bead. Fit one side swirl on top of the bead.

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Now fit the other swirl on the opposite side of the bead, like a sandwich. Holding both swirls in place, wrap the hook around the center of the bead.

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Press flat against the bead middle. Mold the wire, straightening as you work. Once you are satisfied with the cage and it covers your bead nicely, you are ready to bend up the tip of the hook to form a hanger.

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Step 5. That’s it!! You are done. Ready to add whatever you wish to hang your beaded wire cage from.

You can make cages smaller or larger by reducing or increasing the number of revolutions. Also experiment with different lengths of wire to see which best covers the bead size you are using.

Wire cages will look pretty on a pendant, bracelet or earrings. The book used jump rings to connect to the turned up hook. Even keychains would be fun to make. Load up with charms and beads. What better way to use up left over beads or beads with a few flaws. Won’t be able to see the flaw inside a wire cage!!

I am thinking you could make wire cages for other bead shapes too. Oblong and squares. By adjusting the design of the wire. Try experimenting to see what you can create. So far I have only made round cages but I plan to try making other shapes.

My beads I am making wire cages for are blue with orange stripes. I am going to work in seed beads in blue and orange somehow. Still working on that part.

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Tools used: Round nose pliers, Chain nose pliers, and plastic covered Flat nose pliers.

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49 comments on “How To Make Wire Cages For Round Beads

  1. jessij says:

    awesome project! I’ve always wanted to make these. I can’t wait to give try. Thanks

  2. don_mae says:

    Hi there. Thanks!! I found another way to make them too. Will post it once I make them.

  3. Lisa-Dawn says:

    Thanks so much for posting this.
    I’ve just found some lovely marbles that are pretty enough to make into pendants and I have been struggling to find a way to make them

  4. god bless u for sharing ur knowledge

  5. Helen Elliott says:

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge with all of us. You have helped me more than you know. May God bless you from the top of your head to the ends of your toes, and especially your nimble little fingers!. H.E.

  6. Lil says:

    Many thx for this info. I used to make these years ago & had forgotten some of the info I needed. I also make these into a dangle by setting bead on end and using pliers, to pull up the last coil &bending it upward over the bead. I now have a bead to attach to ear wires, pendants, etc.

  7. Lil says:

    NOTE..Yahoo does not carry this info.

  8. Miesch says:

    I love you! I found some phenakite crystals that are freakin’ tiny but lovely nonetheless and this was exactly the kind of tutorial I was seeking 🙂

  9. Veronica says:

    I just made 5 cages. Thank you very much for sharing this fabulous technique information.

  10. Dee says:

    I have got Linda Jones’ book too. It was the first wire work book I bought years ago. Well done for taking time to share the tutorial on your blog.

    Very nice beads too.

  11. Diana Kale-Dery says:

    I have seen your designs and they are nice. good work have a nice day.

  12. Ann says:

    Just found your blog. Looking forward to see other things. Thanks for posting this.

  13. Zara says:

    Hi I’m new to all of this and found your step by step instructions really helpful. Thank you! Will definitely be trying this just as soon as I buy some wire 🙂 Thanks again

  14. satanay says:

    i like hand made and beads so much and i make it

  15. Lucy says:

    Hey! After going through your post ” Making Wire Cages For Round Beads” is looking like an easy task.I am going to give it a try.

  16. flora says:

    thank you so much you are a darling

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