Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant, Contemporary Wire Jewelry. Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder. The finished size of each of these fun pendants is variable because of the freeform and uncalibrated shapes used.
Organic Wire Pendant
by Judy Larson
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Technique(s): Butane Torch Techniques
  • Skill Level: Beginner
The finished size of each of these fun pendants is variable because of the freeform and uncalibrated shapes used. They are fun to make and no two will every be alike, even if the same stones are used.

The black druzy measures 12mm in diameter. The pink druzy measures 12mm x 18mm.

The finished bezel portion of the pendant is 1-5/16" long by 9/16" wide.

The finished pendant, less the bail rings, is 2-316" long by 1½" wide.

Materials

26c22mm Polished Druzy
DRY-8934
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $24.00
  • Gold Club Price: $18.00
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26x19mm Polished Druzy
DRY-8624
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $24.00
  • Gold Club Price: $18.00
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26x20mm Polished Druzy
DRY-8639
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $24.00
  • Gold Club Price: $18.00
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28x15mm Polished Druzy
DRY-8524
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $25.00
  • Gold Club Price: $18.75
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16 Gauge Round Half Hard Argentium .940 Silver Wire
H19-16H
  • Lesson Quantity: 18.00 inches
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1FT
  • Price: $8.88
  • Gold Club Price: $6.66
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7mm 18g argentium jump ring
  • Lesson Quantity: 2.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 2.00 each
22 Gauge Dead Soft Argentium Silver Sheet - 6 Inches
H19-22SM6
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 1 Inch
  • Price: $52.70
  • Gold Club Price: $39.53
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Tools

WireJewelry - Ultimate Wire-Pliers Jewelry Pliers with Case, Set of 5
G15-20
  • G15-20
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $170.72
  • Gold Club Price: $128.04
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Dual Head Hammer
G3-9
  • G3-9
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $6.97
  • Gold Club Price: $5.23
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5 1/2 Inch Nylon Flat Jaw Pliers with Replacement Jaws
G2-1
  • G2-1
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $9.97
  • Gold Club Price: $7.48
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Basic Soldering Kit
G15-4
  • G15-4
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $58.95
  • Gold Club Price: $44.21
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Fire Brick
SOL-485.00
  • SOL-485.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $15.95
  • Gold Club Price: $11.96
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Silver Solder Paste Hard SS75 - 1/4 T.O.
SOL-822.20
  • SOL-822.20
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $19.95
  • Gold Club Price: $14.96
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Silver Solder Paste Medium SS70 - 1/4 T.O.
SOL-822.15
  • SOL-822.15
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $18.95
  • Gold Club Price: $14.21
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Silver Solder Paste Soft SS65- 1/4 T.O.
SOL-822.10
  • SOL-822.10
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $16.95
  • Gold Club Price: $12.71
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Pickle Pot, 16 Ounces
CLN-584.00
  • CLN-584.00
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $31.95
  • Gold Club Price: $23.96
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Sparex Number 2 Pickling Compound
SOL-802.10
  • SOL-802.10
  • Lesson Quantity: 1.00 pieces
  • Purchase Quantity: 1.00 each
  • Price: $6.95
  • Gold Club Price: $5.21
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Instructions
Step 1
Read through the tutorial before starting the project. Follow all safety precautions pertaining to the tools and supplies being used and the space you are working in.

Choose the druzies and embellishments that will become the focal of the pendant. This can become difficult as there are so many to choose from. Here, the black druzy has flashes of pink/magenta and blue/turquoise. Since I had many more pink than blue druzy stones, I went with pink. After narrowing it down to two, one was chosen.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 2
Create a bezel for each druzy. Wrap bezel wire around each stone. Cut the bezel wire a bit long. A miter jig and vise make quick work of squaring up the leading edge of the bezel wire. Mark the leading edge with an ultra fine point retractable Sharpie. I always mark my bezels with an arrow pointing to the edge that will attach to the bezel backing. Marking either up or down is fine so long as you ALWAYS do it the same way. Wrap the bezel wire tightly around the druzy. Use the Sharpie to mark the overlap. Use the miter jig and vise to square up that end of the bezel wire.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 3
Line up the ends of the bezel wire. Stand the bezel up on a soldering brick. Place a small dot of hard paste solder on the seam inside the bezel. Heat around the bezel until the solder flashes silver and flows. Tip the bezel over and heat the outside until the solder flows up the seam.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 4
Reshape each bezel around the corresponding stone.
Step 5
Color the bottom edge of each bezel with a Sharpie Marker.
Pro Tip: I find it easier to see the remaining red marker during sanding than black marker.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 6
Place the bezel marked side down on a piece of 320 or 400 grit sandpaper on a bench block. Cover the bezel with two or three fingers. Move the bezel in a figure 8 motion across the sandpaper several times. Check to see how much marker remains. Turn the bezel one quarter turn. Repeat the sanding process. Continue until no marker remains.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 7
Time to make any adjustments in the design. Originally, I was going to add a gemstone but it did not look right to me so balled scrap wire it was.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 8
Set the design elements on a piece of 22 or 20 gauge sheet metal. Draw around it, leaving a bit of extra room. Cut the piece out. If a rolling mill texture is desired, anneal the backing before running through the rolling mill with the texture sheet. Add your makers mark and metal content to the back of the piece if desired. Make sure they are within the area to be covered by the stones. Anneal and flatten the piece whether or not the piece was textured.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 9
Place the backing textured side down on a soldering surface. Place the bezels in position on the backing. Add medium paste solder to the bottom inside edge of one bezel. Position that bezel on the backing. The paste solder should help keep it from shifting around. Repeat the process with the other bezel. Add decorative balls using medium paste solder.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 10
Heat the unit until the solder flashes silver and flows. Make sure it flows around each bezel.
Pro Tip: You will notice that small pieces of wire were added inside the triangular bezel. One edge of the pink druzy was quite thin. It was a personal choice to raise that edge up to the level of the width of the bezel wire. The other option was to file the bezel edge down to the height of the druzy in that area.
Step 11
Use Lindstrom shears or a saw to cut the excess backing away from the bezels and embellishments.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 12
File the backing until it is even with the bezels and focal elements. Look how much sanding dust is in the bottom of the container. You could breathe some of that in. Therefore, even when a sanding tent is used to control the dust, it is still a good idea to wear a mask. Note: I left a little ledge where I thought I might attach the inner wire framework. After making several more pendants, I found this was not necessary.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 13
Repeat Step 6 with the whole finished focal piece to even up the top of the bezels.
Step 14
There is no way to tell how much wire will be needed to make the wire framework because each pendant is different. More wire length is needed with more bends in the wire framework. After making several of these pendants, I have found that 18" of framework wire is average. Sometimes there will be 3+ inches of wire waste, other times only an inch. If you want to be more accurate in determining how much framework wire is needed because precious metal is expensive, cut an 18" length of 16 gauge copper wire. The 16 gauge round Argentium wire used for the pendant is this tutorial was lightly flattened in a rolling mill and then twisted with a drill until the twists were about ¾" apart. If a rolling mill and drill are not available, hammer the wire flat, as was done with the copper wire in the photos, and then twist it every 5/8" to ¾" using two soft jaw pliers. Form the wire into three rings/ovals to fit around the focal element. Cut the wire tail two to three inches longer than needed. Unwind the copper wire to determine the length of precious metal wire needed.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 15
Repeat the flattening and twisting process you used in Step 14 with the precious metal wire. Make sure it fits around the focal element. Place the shaped framework wire on a soldering surface and anneal it.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 16
Use your fingers and whatever tools you have on hand to accomplish this step. Start forming the wire frame around the focal element, creating overlaps in the wires. The inside wire should touch the focal element bezels in at least three places. The center wire should touch the first wire in at least four places. The outer wire should touch/overlap the center wire in five or six places. The outer wire should also have a loop created at the top to attach the jump rings for the bail. This process is time consuming. The more the wire is manipulated the harder it will become. Because of this, the wire frame will need annealing several times during the process. Keep checking the fit on the focal element.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 17
Once the desired look is created in the wire framework, trim off the excess wire tail.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 18
From the back side, add a dot of medium paste solder between all the wire overlaps. Place the wire framework right side up on a soldering surface. Heat the wire framework to pull the solder between the areas in the wires that are touching. When the solder flashes silver and flows, immediately remove the heat. Allow the wire framework to cool naturally.
Step 19
On a bench block, lightly tap the wire framework with a small nylon/rubber mallet to flatten it a bit. Make adjustments to the wire frame so that at least three areas push tightly against the bezels of the focal element.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 20
Use a Sharpie to mark the areas of the focal element where the wire framework touches. Add a dot of easy paste solder at those points. Place the focal element on a soldering surface. Push the wire framework down over the focal element and into place. Heat until the solder flashes silver and flows. Allow to cool naturally.
Step 21
Add jump rings that will become the bail. The size of the rings is determined by the size of the chain to be used as well as what looks best with the size of the pendant. Here two 18 gauge 7mm ID rings were used, soldered closed, and then shaped into slight ovals.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 22
Clean and refine all the solder joins as well as sand/file back the area where the wire tail ends.
Step 23
Pickle the pendant to remove any fire scale.
Step 24
Tumble the piece for several hours using your preferred tumbling medium, water, and Dawn dish liquid.
Step 25
Patina the piece if desired. Remove excess patina to highlight the wire framework twists and overlaps as well as the embellishments. Tumble the piece for another 20 to 30 minutes to bring back a shine.

Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant
Step 26
If stone security in the bezels is a concern, add a bit of glue to the bottom of the bezel before adding the stones to their respective bezels. Each bezel should be pushed against the stone around the circumference of the stone.
Judy Larson's Organic Wire Pendant - , Contemporary Wire Jewelry, Butane Torch, Soldering, Solder, organic wire and cab pendant