Beading for Beginners: How to
Open and Close Jump Rings

Beading for Beginners: Learn two easy jewelry making techniques - How to Open and Close Jump Rings and Split Rings. Then, how to make a pendant with jump ring bail!

Working With Jump Rings and Split Rings

You'll use jump rings to connect the wire loop of a bead unit to another wire loop, mostly when making earrings.

They're also used to make chain maille jewelry, which is also known as jump ring jewelry.

Split rings are more secure. Use them to connect bracelet and necklace bead strands to clasps. There's even a special tool, split ring pliers, to use to open split rings. Split rings are basically a double jump ring.

Follow these simple step-by-step jewelry making instructions. You'll find yourself  properly opening jump rings, closing jump rings and opening split rings every time.

How to Open and Close Jump Rings

Jewelry Making Supplies
jump rings

Jewelry Making Tools
two pair round nose pliers Or
two pair chain nose pliers Or
one pair round nose pliers and one pair chain nose pliers

Step 1

Using one pair chain nose pliers pickup a jump ring. Place the pliers to the left or right of the opening in the jump ring.

Place the round nose pliers on the jump ring on the other side of the opening.

Step 2

Move one pair of pliers downward and one pair of pliers upward (north and south direction).

The jump ring opens without distorting its shape. If you are going to connect it to another jump ring, clasp or bead unit, this is when you would do it.

Step 3

To close the jump ring, move each pair of pliers in the reverse direction until you line up each side of the opening with the other.

Step 4

Aligned jump ring opening. It takes a little practice, but you'll get the hang of it soon enough!

An almost aligned jump ring opening.

Incorrect way to open a jump ring. Always make sure your pliers are parallel to the jump ring's opening, not perpendicular.

Beading for Beginners Tip

Half hard sterling silver has spring to it. So, when you close a jump ring, bring the two sides just past one another and then reverse directions to line up each side.

How to Open Split Rings

Here's a bonus: How to Open Split Rings

Jewelry Making Supplies

  • split ring

Jewelry Making Tools

  • one pair split ring pliers

A split ring.

Step 1

With the bent jaw on top, place the split ring between the pliers' jaws near one of the openings in the ring. Gently squeeze the pliers shut, allowing the bent tip of the pliers to go between the double rings.

Step 2

Slide the ring of a wrapped loop (or the ring of whatever) into the split ring's opening.

Step 3

Move the ring into the opening until it's completely and securely into the split ring.

Oh yeah, you're really learning beading for beginners now! You're learning
how to make jewelry! Are you thinking, "Opening and closing jump rings - Oh, so easy?" You're right...

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