The Art Bead Scene is happy to introduce guest bloggers this month. I know you’ll enjoy the perspective of these talented jewelry designers and beadmakers.
When I have downtime, I like to take a travel project that’s easy, portable and can be picked up and put down without a lot of fuss. I also don’t like to take a lot of jewelry tools along, so I have a favorite I use when making beaded chains and wire wrapping beads. It’s a fun tool that eliminates the need for multiple tools and I can keep one tool in hand for many purposes. It’s called a Four-In-One Beader’s Delight, or sometimes they are called Rosary Pliers.
They have a finely tapered nose for coiling or wrapping loops, a flat jaw for flattening, straightening or bending wire, a groove for closing coils and jump rings if they get sprung, and a side cutter for small gauge wire. These take the place of round-nose pliers, wire cutters, flat nose pliers and bent-nose or chain-nose pliers, all in one tool.
I keep them in my hand as I cut the length of wire, use the flat portion to bend the wire at 90 degrees to start the loop, use the round nose to make the loop, or use the flat area on crimp beads – all without having to change tools. It’s much more efficient and easier on your hands all at the same time. And relatively inexpensive, so I don’t worry about traveling with more expensive jewelry tools.
Michael’s has them in steel construction, they are called 3-in-1 pliers. I have two pair, one in my metal lidded travel box and one in my tray that goes around the house with me. Get them with padded handles and a leaf spring in the handles to protect your hands and wrists and reduce fatigue when working. You can also find them at Shor International.
When I bought my first pair I thought I was indulging myself with yet another tool in my toolkit, but now I almost use them more than any other tool. If you do a lot of bead wire wrapping, try these out.