Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My. , Contemporary Wire Jewelry. Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder. While wandering around the WireJewelry website, I found Diamonds!  So then I typed
Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.
by Judy Larson
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Technique(s): Butane Torch Techniques
  • Skill Level: Beginner
While wandering around the WireJewelry website, I found Diamonds! So then I typed "bezelled" in the search bar, and low and behold, Emeralds, Sapphires, and other gorgeous bezel set gemstones popped up! Drool!!! And since there are lots of Christmas gifts to make and not much time, these were PERFECT! Search "bezel connector" and smaller teardrop links will pop up. Those can be changed to drops use the same method shown here.

Materials

Sterling Silver Chain w/Bezelled Dyed Sapphire 10.9x13.2 to 12.8x17.4mm - 1 Foot
C8-203U
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 feet
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $25.90
  • Gold Club Price: $19.43
Out of Stock
Sterling Silver Chain w/Bezelled Dyed Emerald 11.9x13.4 to 17.4x19.5mm - 1 Foot
C8-201U
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 feet
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $25.60
  • Gold Club Price: $19.20
Add to Bag
Sterling Silver Earwires Flat & Textured 20mm - Pack of 2
K19-56
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $4.46
  • Gold Club Price: $3.35
Out of Stock
26 Gauge Dead Soft Argentium Silver Sheet - 6 Inches
H19-26SM6
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1 Inch
  • Price: $27.22
  • Gold Club Price: $20.41
Add to Bag
18 Gauge Square Dead Soft Argentium .930 Silver Wire
H19-18SQD
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 feet
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $5.69
  • Gold Club Price: $4.26
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20 gauge 2mm argentium jump rings
  • Lesson Quantity: 4.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 4.00 each
Add All Items to Cart

Tools

C.H.P Milano Italian Flush Cutter, 5 1/2 Inches
PLR-487.00
  • PLR-487.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $16.97
  • Gold Club Price: $12.73
Add to Bag
Chain Nose Wire Plier
G2-508
  • G2-508
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $32.95
  • Gold Club Price: $24.71
Add to Bag
GROBET FILE - BARRETTE CUT 2, 6"
FIL-31.030
  • FIL-31.030
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $31.20
  • Gold Club Price: $23.40
Add to Bag
Multi Angle Cutting Jig
VIS-512.00
  • VIS-512.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $84.95
  • Gold Club Price: $63.71
Add to Bag
Premium Steel Bench Block 2 1/2 X 2 1/2
G17-9
  • G17-9
  • Lesson Quantity: 2.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 2.00 each
  • Price: $15.97
  • Gold Club Price: $11.98
Add to Bag
Dead Blow Brass Hammer - 2 lb. Brass Hammer
HAM-456.20
  • HAM-456.20
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $32.97
  • Gold Club Price: $24.73
Add to Bag
Blazer Big Buddy Turbo Torch, White
TRCH-8012
  • TRCH-8012
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $40.00
  • Gold Club Price: $30.00
Out of Stock
Solderite Soldering Board 6 Inch by 6 Inch Soft
SOL-421.10
  • SOL-421.10
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $12.95
  • Gold Club Price: $9.71
Add to Bag
Flat silicone tip clay sculpting tool
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
Premium Nylon Jaw Pliers
G2-35
  • G2-35
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $14.95
  • Gold Club Price: $11.21
Add to Bag
NATURE'S TOUCH CITRIC PICKLE, 2LB PLASTIC JAR
CLN-163.00
  • CLN-163.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $12.95
  • Gold Club Price: $9.71
Add to Bag
Pickle Pot, 16 Ounces
CLN-584.00
  • CLN-584.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $29.95
  • Gold Club Price: $22.46
Add to Bag
Euro Tool Metal Hole Punch Pliers, 1.8 Millimeters
PLR-133.50
  • PLR-133.50
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $11.98
  • Gold Club Price: $8.98
Add to Bag
Liver of Sulphur Gel, 2 Ounce Bottle
SOL-610.02
  • SOL-610.02
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $12.95
  • Gold Club Price: $9.71
Add to Bag
Add All Items to Cart
Instructions
Step 1
Read through the directions before starting the project.

Note: Some of my photos do not reflect that the stone surfaces are free of scratches and the faceting is very crisp. These stones are just YUMMY!

There is a link slightly larger than the chain links that connects each chain length to the ring on the gemstone. Cut that link in half to remove the chain. Save the rings and chain. The half rings will be used later.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 2
Most strands contain five or six gemstone links. The stones on some one-foot lengths can be made into pairs more easily than others. It is easier to obtain pairs if several strands are purchased as there are more stones to choose from.

The gemstone links will not perfectly match. Those that have similar shapes and sizes make good pairs. Separate the stones into pairs. Check the front and back and change the orientation of each link to find a look that is pleasing to you.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 3
Now that the top and bottom of each link has been chosen, trim off the bottom ring. I chose to cut off half or a little more than half of each ring to save for later use as embellishments. One of the rings on each link has been soldered over a bezel seam. Be careful when cutting.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 4
Use the Grobet cut 2 file to smooth the cut, being careful to not remove too much material. The bezel wall is very thin. Clean, refine, and polish the cut edge with sanding pads.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 5
The bezels holding the stones are very narrow and thin. Sometimes a stone will pop out. If this happens, it could be just a matter of popping it back in the bezel. More often than not, the bezel was cut too long so the stone will be too loose in the bezel.

After popping the stone back in the bezel, the corner (arrow) as well as the area under the top ring showed light. Pop the stone out, place a very thin line of hypo cement in the bezel groove and pop the stone back in. Allow the glue to dry. Use a burnisher to push the bezel wire over the stone on both sides of the stone. Note: It really is not a good idea to sell a product with this fix. The ideal fix would be to remake the bezel, but that is a lot of work. Keep the stone and make yourself a pair of earrings. This happened on almost all the stones in similar short gemstone strands purchased from a different company at four times the price. I have 11 WireJewelry strands so far, and only this one stone popped out.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 6
The stone drops are now ready to be attached to earring findings. Balled ear wires add a bit of a designer touch. The longer ear wires help balance out the visual weight of the larger earring drops. Ball posts are great as they do not pull on the hole in the ear. Larger ear nuts also help stabilize the earring in the ear lobe. And diamond earring findings take everything to whole new level!
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 7
There will always be a few gemstone links that don't seem to visually match. The top two are a good match in size. The bottom two are great candidates for an asymmetric design.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 8
Each of us has a different design esthetic. Personally, I have a hard time with asymmetry. In my head, I need things to at least "match" in visual weight, which is how this design came about. Also, I wanted to use the half rings in some manner. Do not cut off any of the link rings at this time. After the silver links are constructed, you may change your mind on the orientation of all the parts. Sketch out shapes of the two gemstone links.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 9
Use 20 gauge scrap copper wire to make forms that mimic the size and shape of the stone links.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 10
Cut the scrap wire where the wires cross each other. Straighten the wire shape. Cut a piece of 18 gauge square wire the same length as each copper wire.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 11
With only a small amount of wire protruding from the miter jig, secure one end of a square wire against the fence. File the wire end flat with the Grobet cut 2 file. Repeat the process on the other end of the wire and on the ends of the second wire.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 12
Form the wires into ovals, making the wire ends meet perfectly.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 13
Place a small dot of medium silver paste solder on a solderite board. Place the seam of a ring over the dot. Heat until the solder flows.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 14
Use soft jaw tools to shape the ovals into the earring design shapes.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 15
Place a shaped square wire between two bench blocks. One or two medium whacks with a weighted hammer will square up the wires to 90 degrees.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 16
Run the back side of each shape across 400 grit sandpaper on a bench block to smooth and flatten the side that will face the metal backing.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 17
26 gauge scrap sheet from a different project was used for the backing. Sand the top side of each scrap with a 400 or 600 grit sanding pad. Each scrap should have been cut down a bit before continuing, but I got too excited. Also, .925 should have been stamped on the back before continuing, but again, excitement got in the way.!
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 18
Place the shapes on the scrap sheet metal. Draw around each shape with an ultra fine point Sharpie. Mark where rings should be placed. Again, you may change your mind on where the silver links will be placed when they are finished, so two 20 gauge 2mm ID rings will be added to each link. They are easy to remove, but not easy to add later.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 19
Use a flat silicone tip clay sculpting tool to spread a thin layer of medium silver paste solder inside the drawn line on each shape.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 20
Add medium silver paste solder where each ring will be placed. Press each shape into the solder on the corresponding backing.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 21
Press the jump rings into the solder on both sides of shapes. Push them tightly against the square wire bezel wall.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 22
Use tweezers to place half rings inside each shape. When each shape is filled, press the half rings down with a finger to seat them in the paste solder.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 23
Place the assemblies on a solderite board. Because there is a generous amount of paste solder used, use a fume extractor at a minimum.

(Yes, I trimmed the back plates before soldering.) Heat until the solder flows. The backing inside the bezel will not be smooth. Don't worry.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 24
Pickle the pieces. Rinse and dry them before continuing.
Step 25
Trim the excess metal from around the shapes. Use a 1.8mm hole punch to make holes inside the jump rings File, smooth and refine the outer edges of each shape.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 26
In the same manner as in Step 16, sand top of each shape to smooth the square wire bezel.
Step 27
Since I forgot to stamp .925 on the backs when I should have, I did so now. I tried to stay close to the edge because the square wire bezel was a stable area to stamp.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 28
Now is the time to make final decisions on orientation and placement of each of the elements. Since I stayed pretty much with the same design as the original sketch with just a few little tweaks, I cut off the bottom loop on the bottom two elements. Each edge was then filed, refined and polished.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 29
I keep Black Max in refillable brush pen in my pencil holder on my desktop. Just uncap it and brush it into the center of each silver element, paying particular attention to the nooks and crannies. Allow each piece to dry before continuing.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 30
Use 0000 steel wool to remove the darkening from the high points.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 31
Tumble for half an hour or so to polish the pieces. Remove them from the tumbler and rinse and dry the pieces before using.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings
Step 32
Connect the elements with 20 gauge 2.5mm ID jump rings.
Step 33
Attach the desired earring findings.
Judy Larson's Diamonds, Emeralds, and Sapphires, Oh My.  - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, sapphire earrings