This project is for everybody, but is specially dedicated to the brave girls in Sydney who took my two evening classes on balling up a wire at both ends. How fun was that? Here is another thing you can do with this technique, although it’s a little more tricky. You may have to do this a few times until you succeed. I suggest practicing with scrap wire. Seriously, if you manage to do this one, you can consider yourself an expert on balling up wire.
Here are three solid rods from silver, copper, and bronze clay, with a side hole in each. (You can click on the photos to enlarge.)
Cut a piece of fine silver or Argentium wire, 0.7-0.8mm (22 gauge), 8 cm (3″) long.
Bend the wire into a U shape.
Cut another piece of wire of the same thickness and thread it through the side holes. Let it stick out by about 1 cm (0.75″) on each side.
Overlap the ends of the U-shaped wire with the end of the horizontal piece of wire, as shown in the photo.
Twist one end of the U-shaped wire with one end of the horizontal wire. Repeat with the other end.
Cut off the twist to about a 5 mm length on each end.
Hold the earring with cross-lock tweezers with one twisted end held vertically down.
Using a propane/oxygen torch, ball up the twisted end. This is the tricky part, since you need to remove the flame on time, as soon as the twist is balled-up, or the wire will melt and the connection will open up.
Repeat this step with the other twisted end.