Birdhouse Pendant

By on December 23, 2015
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by Judy Ellis, Wirejewelry.com

Wire Jewelry Pattern for December 23rd, 2015

12daysheader

With Christmas right around the corner, and our 12 Days of Christmas Tips quickly coming to a close, I wanted to share another fantastic pattern from our contributor Judy Larson.  I’d like to thank Judy for sharing her wonderful patterns with us, and I know you will love this one, just as much as I do!

On the 11th Day of Christmas…

Birdhouse Pendant

Designed by Judy Larson

Soldering experience is necessary to make this pendant.

Materials

  • 24 gauge sheet metal-– use the two large circles and one bail templates 22 inches of 20 gauge round dead soft wire
  • Two 6-8mm bead caps
  • One purchased bail or make your own (shown)
  • The pendant bezel is made from a 5/8” length of ½” ID copper pipe (not tubing)

Tools:

Instructions:

  1. Use a pipe cutter to cut one ¾” long piece of ½” ID pipe for the pendant.
    step1
  2. Hint: You may find it easier to texture the pipe tube if you anneal it first. Use an ultra fine point permanent to divide the 5/8” length of the pipe into thirds.
  3. Slide the pipe onto a ring mandrel.
    step3
  4. Keep pushing the tube down the mandrel as you use the narrower side of the Mini TruStrike Sharp Designer Hammer to texture both ends of the pipe. There are many ways to hold the tube on the mandrel. Find one that is comfortable for you. Make sure that you turn the pipe tube around frequently on the ring mandrel. You will notice that the tube ends will flare out a bit, which is what you are aiming for. Texture until each end is a size 4 on the ring mandrel.
    step4
    step4a
  5. Use the larger side of the Mini TruStrike Embossing Hammer to texture the center of the pipe, keeping in mind that you still want both ends to flare out a bit.
    step5
  6. Remove the tube from the ring mandrel and anneal it.
  7. Slide the tube back on the ring mandrel. Use the narrower side of the Mini TruStrike Sharp Designer Hammer to texture both ends of the tube again. Make sure that you turn the tube around frequently on the ring mandrel. Texture until each end is between a size 4¼ and 4½ on the mandrel.
    step7
  8. Drag each tube end over a file to flatten the ends. After you do this, you can then file the ends and a slight angle to fit into the cupped ends. The fit does not need to be perfect.
    step8
  9. Pickle the piece to remove the fire scale.
  10. Copy the one bail and two large circle templates. Click here for the Jewelry Component Templates
  11. Transfer the designs to your sheet metal.
  12. Cut the circles out.
    step13
  13. File any sharp edges.
  14. Use a 1.25mm hole punch to make holes in the center of each piece
  15. Use an ultra fine point permanent marker to draw a circle on each piece as shown.
  16. Place each circle on a bench block. Use the narrower side of the Mini TruStrike Sharp Designer Hammer to texture the outer edge on each circle. Use the larger side of the Mini TruStrike Embossing Hammer to texture the center area on each circle.
    step16
  17. Use an ultra fine point permanent marker to draw a wavy line around the edge of each circle. Use your metal shears to cut around the circle on the wavy line.
    step17
  18. Use the Dapping Punch Set to dome each circle, textured side facing down. To preserve the texture, consider placing a piece of felt between the circle and the dapping block well. Start with the largest well and work your way down to a size that fits the textured pipe section to your liking. Note: Use a dap several sizes smaller than the block well so that the edges of the circles will be slightly rippled when you are finished.step18
  19. If too much of the dimple texture is no longer visible, place the domed circle on a dap and lightly add a bit of texture with the larger side of the Mini TruStrike Embossing Hammer.
    step18a
    step19
  20. Remove any remaining marker lines from the tube and end caps with an alcohol soaked pad.
  21. Once you have the fit you desire, connect the end caps to the pipe where the few points touch using your preferred soldering method. Note: You could glue the end caps on, if desired, but they may not hold as well.
  22. Ball the end of the 5” piece of 20 gauge wire to make a long headpin.
  23. Pickle and tumble the soldered “birdhouse” section and the headpin.
  24. Thread the components onto the balled headpin in this order: bead cap, soldered piece, bead cap. Make a wire wrapped loop at the top. Trim the wire end off. You could leave the wrap wire end long and make it into a tendril on the roof.
    step24
  25. Use the remaining 20 gauge wire to construct a rosette ring around the center of the pipe. There are many tutorials online showing how to do this. Place the center of the wire in the center front of the pipe. Wrap each wire end around the back of the pipe and then back to the front. Make your rosette to the size you desire. Note: You have enough wire to make 3 wraps, 2 are shown.
  26. Cut the wire ends to a length of 1¼” beyond the edge of the rosette. Ball the wire ends. You could leave the wire ends long and wrap as tendrils up over the roof and/or down over the bottom.
    step26
  27. Use a round nose pliers to tweak and bend the “ring shank” wires on the back to tighten the rosette. Bend the balled wire ends in a pleasing manner.
  28. Pickle the piece to remove fire scale.
  29. Tumble the piece in steel shot to shine it up or use 0000 steel wool to polish it.
  30. Attach the bail to the pendant.
  31. You can leave your pendant bright and shiny or use liver of sulfur to patina it. Buff with 0000 steel wool to bring out the dimension of your texturing. Below, left to right, birdhouses from: Kathi Nelson, Carol Ericslon, Deb Carlson, Judy Larson.step31

I hope that you’ve enjoyed seeing our 12 Days of Christmas Tips! I’ve enjoyed sharing them with you…

As our final gift – don’t forget to use this Promo Code TREE10 to save an additional 10% off Site Wide on anything you might need to get your projects going! This code is good from through Dec. 24th -so get a little wire, a few beads or any type of tools you might need to help make your holiday’s bright!

Happy Wrapping!

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6 Comments

  1. avatar

    Sue Johnson

    December 23, 2015 at 1:44 pm

    Love this, but, where are the templates for the bail & circles? Or am I just missing something? Wouldn’t surprise me.

  2. avatar

    Sue Johnson

    December 23, 2015 at 1:48 pm

    Never mind! I paid attention to the column on the right side of the screen & there they were! Thanks for neat designs & good instructions – especially when I read them!

    • avatar

      Doreen aka LuniLadi

      January 6, 2016 at 4:24 pm

      Sue, there’s nothing on the right side of the screen except ads for tools and links to the projects. When I click on the link for this project it just takes me right back here….no templates :(

      Would it be possible for you to post a link?
      Thanks so much
      Doreen

  3. avatar

    Doreen aka LuniLadi

    December 24, 2015 at 11:47 am

    LOVE this pendant!! Thanks so much for the instructions! One question…in step 10 it says “Copy the bail and two large circle templates” but I couldn’t find them anywhere. Is there supposed to be a link? Or am I missing something? I’d love to have them so all the jewelry components are made to the same size.
    Thanks again! Love the tutorials and projects.

  4. avatar

    Judy Larson

    January 10, 2016 at 12:39 pm

    Check here for the templates: https://www.wirejewelry.com/jewelry-making-blog/17987/jewelrycomponents/
    As for the bail, which I love, wirejewelry may publish the directions for it at a later date.

    • avatar

      Doreen aka LuniLadi

      July 5, 2016 at 8:59 am

      Judy,
      Finally got back here to thank you for the link to the templates. I LOVE this series of design projects!! They include great designs, wonderful instructions and build metalsmithing skills. Thank you SO MUCH for your generosity, inspiration and instruction. It is so appreciated.

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