Woven Wire Jewelry by Linda Chandler and Christine R. Ritchey

Woven Wire Jewelry by Linda Chandler and Christine R. Ritchey

Picture This is a book you'll  want to have if you’re looking for a simple, easy and skillful way of making woven wire jewelry. The authors present a contemporary way of doing woven wire wrapping that is quite appealing. In doing so, they've succeeded in  modernizing an old technique. The authors devote a a good portion of the book to working with PMC, Precious Metal Clay. They then cleverly use the PMC to teach readers how to make custom clasps, findings and embellishments for the woven wire jewelry in this book. While most of the weaves in this book are derivatives and variations on a basic weave, Woven Wire Jewelry presents a wonderful and simple weaving technique designed to please. Additionally, they also provide information on a tool to help you manage all those little wires.

There’s an impressive introductory section about safety, tools and equipment that is quite thorough. This section includes excellent information about more advanced equipment than most wire jewelry books. It has information about polishing wire jewelry, for example, which is very helpful, especially for novices. It also has info on cutting and smoothing tools as well as good illustrations and explanations of soldering and the equipment needed to solder.

One of the things I like about Woven Wire Jewelry is that the authors show you how to finish your woven wire jewelry both without having to do any soldering or if you choose to make PMC findings, how to solder those on. It’s your choice about whether to solder or not and either way, you’ll end up with finished woven wire jewelry.

I think a good review of this book needs to point out that there’s really only one woven wire technique in this book although there are a number of variations on that technique. Woven Wire Jewelry is extremely well illustrated. The first section on the basic weaving technique has a full 30 close up, color, step-by-step pictures to ensure your success. Also, the basic technique is really dynamite and the authors show you in great detail exactly how to accomplish it easily.

One of the biggest problems when weaving wire is how to control all the long wires when you’re starting a new weave. Chandler and Ritchey address that issue by showing readers how to use a quick grip vice (inexpensive and easily found in hardware stores) to control their woven pieces. This is really an excellent method to use and has saved me many hours of untangled wire. Using a grip vice (small, hand held tool that looks like big pliers) allows your weaving to be portable and also keeps all the wires in place so this tool is a very valuable asset indeed if you’re looking to weave wire jewelry.
About two thirds of the book is devoted to the wire weaving technique with four projects that show variations on the basic technique that are quite well done and thoroughly illustrated. The remaining third of the book is devoted to learning how to work with precious metal clay. The book then goes to great length to teach the reader to make their own custom jewelry findings.

Woven Wire Jewelry: Contemporary Designs and Creative Techniques gives a nice finish with a fifteen page gallery of woven wire jewelry to inspire. All in all, this is a very nicely laid out, extremely well illustrated book with valuable instruction for the wire jewelry enthusiast!

Fabulous Woven Jewelry: Plaiting, Coiling, Knotting, Looping & Twining with Fiber & Metal (Lark Jewelry Books)