First let us look at Beadalon's new Artistic Wire 3D Bracelet Jig.
This thing is totally cool. It is a round jig base with evenly spaced rows and columns of holes. Pegs go through the holes and are secured with some sort of flexible plastic fasteners that slip over the peg ends. This jig allows you to create wire bangles and cuff bracelets with ease as well as curved earring components. The jig retails for $15.99 on Prima Bead and comes with 20 pegs and fasteners as well as an instruction booklet.
It is a very easy to use jig and the pegs really stay in play as you work. I have used up to 16 gauge wire on the jig without any trouble. To remove your design, simply slip the fasteners off the bottom of the pegs and remove the pegs. The design will fall off with ease. You can even make those super cute and trendy adjustable bangle charm bracelets with this bad boy.
Important to note is that you will need additional pegs and fasteners for more intricate projects. The extra pegs come packages in sets of 30 pegs with fasteners for $6.99 on Prima Bead.
The only draw back to this jig is that there isn't enough pegs in the package with the jig if you have an elaborate design. For simple designs, 20 pegs are plenty.
Here are two bracelets I made using the 3D Bracelet Jig:
|This one was made with 20 pegs.|
|This one definitely required extra pegs.|
Prima Bead also offers a flat wire jig for those who are just starting out. It retails for only $7.49 and comes with two colors of practice wire, 21 various sized plastic pegs and instruction booklet. There is one really large peg, two smaller pegs, two medium size pegs and 16 small pegs. The pegs stay securely in the jig without any fasteners. This is a great beginner jig for simple projects. You can create filigree connectors, hook and eye clasps, and even ear wires with this jig. If you are just creating simplistic designs, then this is a great jig to use.
This jig can be a bit of a learning curve when you first look at it, but don't be intimidated. Once you figure out what row lines up with which column, you will have it licked. The instruction booklet has two blank templates for you to sketch out designs on.
I found three minor drawbacks to this tool. One is again the pegs. There is not any extra pack of pegs that can be purchased as yet. So, be careful as not to lose them. The second drawback to this jig is there are only two blank templates. But this is an easy fix. Simply photocopy or scan them. The final drawback is the jig cannot handle heavier gauge wire. 16 gauge wire is a bit of a stretch for the jig. It can be done as long as the wire is aluminum or dead soft copper wire. It is, after all, just a beginner jig.
Here are a few items made with the flat wire jig:
Tutorials to follow on these as well.
While you are visiting the Prima Bead site, check out the new look. Also, make sure to check out the link at the bottom of the page for their loyalty program. Be sure to sign up and let them know you found about about it here!