Ceramic beads love to be wire wrapped. I have found that Bail Making Jewelry Pliers
work even better than round nose pliers. They hold the wire better and can handle thicker wire. And best of all, without much effort all of your wire loops are the same size.
Wire wrapped raku beads and chain links
Wire wrapped unglazed stoneware beads and pendant. These colors are made for each other
Below are some tips on how to use the Bail Making Jewelry Pliers
Begin by making a right angle bend in your wire
Put the angle into the pliers using the jaw size you want. Most of these pliers come in two sizes. You want to put the jaw size you want on top because you will be bending your wire over it. I mark the handles of my pliers with the one I use the most so I am sure.
Draw your wire over the jaw of bailing pliers and down straight
You will begin this step by turning your pliers over to reinsert your loop into the jaws of the pliers since this time you will be using the jaw to wrap the loop. You will know which jaw is the right one if you have marked the handle of your pliers.
You will now draw the wire around the bottom wire --just as you do when you make a regular wrapped loop using round nose pliers. The only difference is that you do not have to worry about where to place the wire on the pliers to get consistency as you would with the round nose.
You can now continue to wrap your wire around and the rigidity of the pliers makes this much easier since the wire won't be slipping off.
Once you have your first wrapped loop, you can slip on a bead and make the next one.
Make your right angle bend abut 1/8 inch above the bead--just large enough to slip in jaw of the bailing pliers.
Bring the wire over the bailing pliers and straight down.
Bring the wire around the loop and before you start to wrap the loop attach it to the loop of the bead you want to string it to and then wire wrap your loop closed. It is very easy to forget to attach your bead before you close the wrap. Mindfulness helps here.
Once you have the bead attached to the one above it you can finish the wrap. And then you are on your way to a lovely piece with consistent sized loops.
These bailing pliers come in several sizes and are also useful for making consistent size coils and bails. Some people use the largest size to bend filigree over stones and pendants since these long round nose jaws are less likely to damage your filigree.
If you have a favorite way to wrap your ceramic beads, please share them with us and leave a comment. We love to hear from you.