Beading Projects

How to Make Butterfly Dangle Earrings – Beginner Tutorial

These acrylic butterfly beads are so popular.  I decided it was time I found out what all the hype was about and make something with them.  The butterfly dangle earrings were born!

This is a good project for a beginner as I teach you how to make loops and how to open jump rings – two of the most basic skills you will need to make jewellery.  It’s building on the techniques learned in the Cubes and Daggers Necklace that I made last week though.

Materials

Here’s what you’ll need to make these earrings

Tools

  • Chain nose pliers pliers (2 pairs if possible)
  • Flush cutters
  • Round nose pliers

Instructions

Watch the video or read the instructions below.

Step 1

Thread on a 3mm silver bead, beaded rondelle, butterfly bead, beaded rondelle and 3mm silver bead.

Repeat the process for the second earring.

Step 2

Using the ruler, measure 1cm from the top of the beads. Pick up the wire in your flush cutters (making sure the flush side is closest to the beads.  Cut the wire, holding both ends of the wire.

Repeat for the second earring, measuring against the first earring so that both components are the same length.

Step 3

Bend the wire to a right angle at the top of the beads with the pliers making sure the bend is nice and sharp.

Using the round nose pliers, make a loop in the end of the wire close to the top of the beads.  If you haven’t made a loop before, watch this video.

Step 4

Cut the chain into six pieces as follows:

  • 2 pieces at 5 links (cut link 6)
  • 2 pieces at 6 links (cut link 7)
  • 2 pieces at 7 links (cut link 8).

Step 5

Make the little orange dangles for the ends of the chains – thread a 6mm faceted rondelle onto a head pin.

Bend the headpin to a right angle at the top of the bead. Use your thumb nail to get a nice sharp bend.

Measure and trim the wire to 8mm from the bend just as you did for the butterfly component.  Make a loop, slightly smaller than the ones for the butterflies (move the wire slightly closer to the end of the pliers to make the loop smaller).

Repeat five more times so that you have six of these components.

Step 6

Hold the side of the loop of the dangle component that opens in your chain nose pliers.Holding the bead between your thumb and forefinger.  Rotate your hand down, therefore opening the loop up.

Thread the end of one piece of chain on the open loop, then close the loop by reversing the process.

Repeat until you have added all the dangles to the six pieces of chain.

Step 7

Arrange the dangles into the size order – shortest to longest.

Open one of the jump rings by holding it on either side of the opening with the pliers and rotating one hand up and one hand down.

Holding the jump ring in your pliers, thread on the end of three pieces of chain, first the longest, then middle sized, then smallest. Then thread on the bottom loop of the butterfly component.  Close the jump ring by reversing the opening process.

Repeat for the other earring.

Step 8

Using your both pairs of pliers, straight the loops on either end of the butterfly component to ensure they are both facing the same way.

Open the loop on the ear wire, slip on the top loop of the butterfly component and close the loop.

Repeat for the other earring making sure the earwire is facing the other way.

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