Daily Wire Tip Mar. 2: Crochet Wire Designs

By on March 1, 2011
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Daily Wire Jewelry Making Tip for
March 2, 2011


What is the best gauge wire to use for crocheting wire? I used a 26-gauge copper wire for a bracelet once, and it stretched out as I wore it. I also used glass beads in various sizes, could that have been the problem, too heavy? Thank you.

-Olga in Aibonito, Puerto Rico


When I was a little girl, my grandmother tried to teach me to crochet, but all of my Granny Squares came out round! Although I love the look of crocheted wire jewelry designs, I stay far, far away from it. WS Faculty member Lena Bugrimenko makes a lot of crocheted wire jewelry, so I asked for her advice, and she said:

Of course, the more beads and/or components that you add to a crocheted bracelet, the more it will stretch. Yes, the weight of the beads used is part of the challenge, because the wire itself is not really stretching – rather, the stitches are! A lacy crocheted bracelet design is lovely, but add heavy beads to it and the weight of the beads will eventually pull the stitches out of round, making the bracelet longer. Try using smaller, tighter stitches and lighter beads; or, compensate by making the finished product a bit shorter, and then purposely stretch the bracelet for the final product length. Hope this helps!

Answer contributed by Dale “Cougar” Armstrong

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  1. avatar


    March 2, 2011 at 8:55 am

    I have done some crocheted necklaces. I did them with small beads and in a chain long enough to fold in thirds, twist and stretch then finish the ends…they remind me of the flower leis from Hawaii so call them bead leis….I worked with 26 ga.

  2. avatar


    March 2, 2011 at 10:19 am

    I usually use 28 or 30g fine silver, or 28g craft wire. I tried 34g (mainly because it came in colors I wanted not otherwise available), but that is so thin it snaps.

    Fine silver seems to hold up better to beads than the craft wires (most of which have a copper core).

  3. avatar


    March 2, 2011 at 10:53 am

    i have never used copper, but it might be too soft… i have used 26 and even 28 gauge wire, and sometimes i use beads as big as 8mm in glass. i’ve never had a problem with stretching, but i do as Dale suggests and stretch the stitches out before finishing the piece. By running the chain through your fingers a few times, you not only stretch it out, but it helps to harden it as well.

    You also might find it helpful if you experiment a bit with different size hooks and wire. Eventually, you’ll the find the combination you’re after and you’ll be much happier with your finished project.

    • avatar


      March 2, 2011 at 8:36 pm

      Many thanks to all of you, for jumping in to share your experiences with us!

  4. avatar


    March 2, 2011 at 7:31 pm

    It’s true, it’s the stitches that change their shapes. As you handle it more often, the round stitches (chain stitch) change to ovals which changes the length of the jewelry piece.

    To minimize this, you may want to use a smaller crochet hook which allows you to make smaller/tighter crochet stitches.

    Another way to minimize changing the shape of the chain wire is to stiffen it. Normally in wire jewelry, if you want to stiff the wire, at completion of your jewelry piece, you tap it a little with a plastic hammer. But your piece, bracelet, has beads on them so it’s not always possible to stiffen it with a hammer. This is what I normally do, I use a flat nose parallel-action pliers and press the wirework in between the beads. This will help to stiffen the wire stitches as you would with hammering. Thus, it will help to retain its shape.

    • avatar


      March 2, 2011 at 8:33 pm

      Thanks so much for sharing Natalie!

  5. avatar


    October 4, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    I am currently using 24 gauge wire to make some crochet necklaces, and bracelets. i love the way the loops stay looking like loops. It can be a bit challenging to make a number of bracelets at one sitting, but it sure Looks Nice.
    and the beads big or small don’t change the loops at all.