Some of you will know that I am passionate about wirework,
jewellery design, beads and stones, in fact anything arty or
crafty! However, my journey into jewellery making didn't
start with wire, it started with metal and enamelling.
|Cloisonne Enamel stick pin brooch on Sterling Silver by L.Jones|
Scroll back 23 years, when I attended the Sir John Cass jewellery
college in London (as a relatively mature student of 30), my first
taste of jewellery making was in silversmithing. I instantly fell
in love with metal sheet, the fact that I could saw out my shaped
designs, when it was flat and hard, and then anneal (heat it) to
make it soft ... and hammer it into shape, flatten and harden it again...
|Sterling Silver Leaf brooch by L.Jones|
When I discovered wire, I treated it exactly like metal sheet and
carried on with my love of hammering to flatten, spread, texture
and work harden it! After all, jewellery pieces should not only
be aesthetic, but functional and practical as well: chain links and
clasps and any open open wirework designs need to have a solid
structure to stand the test of time.
|Sterling Silver etched Snake earrings by L.Jones|
Anyhow, over the years ... I think it's about 12! ... I have enjoyed
using wire as my design muse. Doodling shapes and colouring
it in with beads and stones. However, the question of what hammer
to use has always been an issue of contention! You can of course
use any hammer for wirework, as long as it has a highly polished
steel face, so as not to mark the metal. Therefore, over time I have
been purchasing simple ballpein hammers, chasing hammers,
planishing hammers, nylon headed hammers ... you name it, I have
a bucket load! Some are good for one thing, some for another, but
all are definitely designed for sheet metal and not thin, pieces of
wire and as such, the handles are too bulky, which makes for limited
|Silver Silver Pendants with freshwater pearls by L.Jones|
I hope now to have resolved this problem once and for all
with the launch of my WHAMMER
The world's first specialist wirejewellery hammer!
The WHAMMER hammer
has perfect credentials for wirework, encompassing all
the benefits of other metal hammers, such as chasing,
planishing and nylon headed.
|The Whammer! designed by L.Jones|
If you're wondering what the Whammer's attributes are, read on:
1) Dual purpose head (steel and nylon) - making it two hammers in one!
2) Extra weighty head, means you don't have to strike too hard, just
"stroke" the wire out, leaving a minimum of surface texture.
3) Nylon face is perfect for flattening or ironing out kinks, as
well work hardening coloured and plated wires without changing the
surface of the wire.
4) Convex steel face is especially designed to get the best results for
spreading, flattening and work hardening wire.
5) Short stem handle means you have good control over each strike.
6) Ergonomic grip means it's comfortable to hold.
7) Small overall compact size means it's easy to stow away and carry
|Copper and silver wire 'Eastern Delight' Necklace by L.Jones|
I probably don't need to tell you, why I had to call it the
WHAMMER!! It's a combination of the first letter of
'wire' plus the word 'hammer', being completely descriptive!
I also probably don't need to say, that it's possibly one of
the most therapeutic techniques in wireworking - you can
bash away all your troubles and woes to a primitive jungle
beat! In fact, I'm dreaming on an idea to introduce wirework
and hammering techniques as a treatment for clinical depression.
|Wire Flower Hairpin by L.Jones|
So keep your eyes open for some project tutorials coming up
soon ... using the WHAMMER. The technique of hammering wire
takes a little practice, it requires a 'stroking' motion on a steel block
and the understanding of the material you're using.
Let's all get WHAMMERING!!!
The new BEADSMITH WHAMMER is now available at