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Advice needed about sterling silver wire

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  • Advice needed about sterling silver wire

    Hi everyone

    I have just joined this forum. What a wonderful place! So many beautiful blogs and websites and wonderful advice.

    I make wirewrapped jewellery, usually out of copper wire ( sometimes electrical wire if its the right gauge). I have also used silver plated wires but found that they were a bit harder than copper.

    I am wanting to make a few pieces out of sterling silver wire but am confused as to which type to get. Obviously its quite expensive stuff so would want to make sure I don't waste my money.

    I prefer working with copper so would you reccommend I get soft, dead soft or half hard sterling wire?

  • #2
    if you want a temper that's comparable with copper, then you need dead soft. For gauges of 0.8 or below, I'd go for half hard to minimise the risk of toolmarks.


    • #3
      ive recently started wire wrapping and use half hard wire. not sure if you do wire wrapping similiar to mine but if you do then half hard works well in keeping it nice and sturdy...but it is a nightmare for my fingernails!


      • #4
        I do some wire wrapped jewellery as well and I use sterling silver square half hard wire mainly gauge 20 and 21 approx .8 and .7mm . I love the effect I can get from twisting the square wire.
        Something Shiny Something Sparkly
        Handmade Tiaras & Jewellery by Diana @ dizaTIARAS
        My blog


        • #5
          Ooh, I love your wirework jewellery Priti. I love working with gemstones too
          I don't do much weaving as of yet but was the next thing I wanted to master.

          I haven't tried square wire yet but it does look amazing when its wrapped.

          I wonder if half hard is similar to the feel of standard silver plated wire? If that is the case I find it a bit too hard and it seems to form kinks on me. I would, for my first project be needing 1mm and 0.3mm wire. I want to make a framework and then need the thinner wire for knitting effect.

          Does anyone age their Sterling silver wire with Liver of sulphur too? I have done it with copper and have heard it works on sterling but just better double check before I ruin 70 quids worth of wire!


          • #6
            Liver of sulphur's fine on sterling (though I much prefer the gunmetal finish of Platinol). Make sure your piece is thoroughly degreased first - fingerprints in particular show up badly and it's tiresome to have to start again.


            • #7
              I use half hard wire 0,8 mm for base and soft wire for wrapping. I also oxidised everything because I love that antique look in wire wrapped jewellery. But be careful with liver of sulphur with some stones - is better to check on one stone before you destroy finished jewellery. Sorry for my bad English- I'm Polish


              • #8
                Thanks for the advice ladies. Unfortunately I had a bit of a disaster this month as my cat had to go to the vets, £700 bill I can't afford any sterling wire just yet!

                I have noticed tha LOS can ruin certain beads too. Its good advice to check before dunking your whole piece in it! thanks for the tip reverie