Several years ago, on a trip back to visit Maine, I was introduced to the sport that is sea glass picking. It’s the perfect excuse to grab some friends and head out for a little fresh air and sea admiration. We headed out into Jonesboro, ME into the “mucky muck” to find some special goods. The pieces I picked might not have been your standard jewelry grade, but I still was able to turn my treasures into a rad wrap bangle. As the saying goes, “One man’s trash is another’s treasure.”When I first started college, I began at the University of Maine at Machias. I loved Maine and made amazing memories with great people up there. It will always have a place in my heart, and I’m thankful that I did get to spend two years there. DownEast Maine was where I truly picked up on Artisan jewelry. I had a lot of fun making this bracelet and love what a conversation starter it is.
- 2 pieces of sea glass
- flat aluminum wire (finished) *Should be soft and very easy to bend.
- 20 mm wire
- wire cutters
- jewelry glue
Step One: How to prepare your sea glass and get it clean.
Take a smidge of vinegar, and put it in a bowl of water and let your sea glass sit for a while. After this, place it in a colander and take a tooth brush to scrub off excess sand/dirt. Baby oil works wonders at getting the glass clean. That’s all it should take.
Step Two: Measuring/Cutting the Wire
The aluminum wire is thick, but should be very easy to bend. I found this wire with a gold finish at Hobby Lobby of course! Instead of using a mandrel, I used my actual arm as a measuring tool. Take the already cut end of the wire, and set it right underneath where your ring finger begins. Bend the wire and let it mold to your wrist as you wrap around the other side. Bring the other end of the wire under your wrist and back over the other side of your wrist. Make sure it fits snug enough to stay on, but loose enough to be comfortable before you make your cut. The cut you will want to make is right around where your pointer finger will start.
Step Three: Wrapping
The wire should lay flat against your skin, if yours has a sharp edge, I recommend getting a nail file or a flat bastard and filing the edge to get it smooth. You could also put a tiny drop of hot glue on the end as a sealant. Now begins the wrapping. Start your wrap 1/4 inch down and make four – five wraps to secure the wire. The wrapping technique I used was simply to fold over and bring around. I usually take my thumb nail and pull the wires closer together. Next you want to place the glass. The glass should stay pretty well, but if you want extra security, go ahead and put a dab of jewelry glue on the wire and hold the glass in place
Step Four: The Pattern
As you can see from my photo, it is a pretty simple pattern. Bring the wire over to the center of the glass, and then down ~ 1/8 of an inch. Wrap it behind the glass and do this 3 times spaced apart. When you space them further apart, they hold the glass better in place.
Step Five: Finishing off the wrap
I took the excess piece of wire and brought in behind the sea glass and did four more wraps on top of where you already wrap the aluminum wire. Cut the wire and wrap the edge underneath to hide. It should stay smooth, but if not you could either file it or put a dab of hot glue on the end to keep it from scratching your wrist.
Step Six: Repeat on the other side
Complete the same steps on the other side of the bangle. Twist the bangle slightly so that one end is higher than the other. That’s it! You now have a pretty sea glass bangle!