All Wired Up: Techniques For the Beadworker and Jewelry Maker by Mark Lareau

This is a very good and  practical beginner’s book for anyone wanting to start making wire jewelry. With a  sophisticated take on wirewrapping, All Wired Up focuses its’ attention on providing the reader with very basic and detailed information. Mr. Lareau's  techniques wisely focus on a number of first steps in wire working: making wire loops, wrapped loops, scrolls, triangles and builds from there to include how to make clasps, headpins and other essential jewelry parts. There are jewelry projects to make with these newfound essential skills as well. Anyone inclined to become a beadworker will find this book an essential one in their library. Aspiring and beginner jewelry makers will benefit from the essentials in this book as well.

All Wired Up is very well illustrated with large, step-by-step drawings making it hard to make mistakes. The book starts with an excellent section on the few tools that you’ll need to get started and it also has great information on additional tools that can be used. One of the advantages to All Wired Up is that the illustrations are large and show the novice exactly how to hold their pliers when attempting any new wire technique. This is a rare benefit in a how-to book.

After the first section on the review of making basic wire shapes, the book offers 3 projects building on and using those basics: 2 embellished donut beads and a nifty pair of bead caged, spiral earrings. Working thru these projects is bound to give the reader a sense of confidence in their newly acquired skills and techniques!

Chapter 5, Findings, is a real treasure given that making findings (parts used to connect jewelry) is frequently the hardest part of making jewelry. Lareau shows the reader how to make findings of their own in this section with, again, the large illustrations of each step in the process. He covers three kinds of head pins and then moves on to making 3 custom ear wires for earrings. In Chapter 7, Lareau illustrates how to make S clasps, and hood and eye clasps for bracelets and necklaces. All Wired Up finishes with techniques for making wire cages for beads, marbles, a wire capped bead and finally, wirewrapping cabachons.

As inspiration for beadworkers and jewelry makers, All Wired Up completes its’ job with a 20 page, full color gallery of interesting wire jewelry by various artists. Again, this book provides a review of the essentials of wire techniques for making a newer, more contemporary version of wirewrapping. Excellent job, Mark!

All Wired Up: Wire Techniques for the Beadworker and Jewelry Maker (Beadwork How-To series)