And now, I will interject my opinion: Hands down, I always prefer the wrapped loop.
First, I think it looks cleaner and more professional; second, and probably more importantly, it’s much sturdier. The Basic Loop can be maneuvered out of its original shape very easily, but you’ve got to work pretty hard to pull the Wrapped Loop out of shape.
If these two styles had personalities, they would look like this: The Wrapped Loop requires a little more work upfront, but is emotionally stable, reliable and can withstand quite a bit of pressure. The Basic Loop, while fun and easy at first, turns out to be a bit neurotic and is prone to nervous collapse at the first sign of trouble.
Where do I even come up with this stuff? Nobody knows, not even me.
To make the items in this lesson, you will only need two-2 inch lengths of silver plated 26 gauge wire. (I may earn from qualifying purchases). You can certainly use other gauges and materials, but that’s what I’m using for the purposes of this lesson.
The difference between an eyepin and a headpin is simple: An eyepin has a loop that’s meant to serve as a connector, while a headpin has a terminating bead or knot that constitutes the boundary of a design.
These loops, beads and knots show up in many more ways than I will list here, but to get you started, I will be showing you how to make two types of eye pins in this lesson and seven types of head pins in the next.
So, once we’ve straightened out the 2 inch lengths of wire, we can dive in:
The first eyepin I will show you is the Basic Loop Eyepin. To start, use the same exact technique that we use to make a plain Basic Loop with your round nose pliers. Here’s the part that’s different:
Unlike a plain basic loop, we want the loop of an eyepin to be centered. Using your chain nose pliers, adjust the loop so the remaining wire stands straight up from the middle of the loop.
You will notice that the loop opens a bit during this process. Gently use the chain nose pliers to close it. You may even need to use the same technique for opening and closing a jump ring, depending upon how far out of shape the loop has moved.
The second type of eyepin I will show you is the Wrapped Loop Eyepin.
About ¾ inch from the edge of the wire, make a loop with your round nose pliers. Just as when we were learning how to make the Basic Loop, we come up against the fact that a human wrist will only twist so far. The first twist away from you will create a lopsided upside down “U.”
We will now perform a fancy little move that I like to call the “Release and Switch.” Here’s what I mean by this: To make the initial bend, you secured the wire in the jaws and twisted away from you. Now, you will release the wire from the pliers, twist your wrist back towards you and slide the jaw closest to you between the bent wire. You will now be able to grip the short end of the wire and twist it around to complete the loop.
The intersection of the loop will now form a ninety degree angle.
You will need two pairs of chain nose pliers for this next part.
Hold the loop firmly in one pair of pliers with the jaws parallel to the short end of the wire. Use the other pair of pliers to wrap this short end around the long end. I usually do three rotations.
Once you’ve completed your rotations, trim the excess wire with your snips. Still holding the loop in your pliers, move the other pair of pliers in the same direction of the wrap to tighten the wire.