These pretty ear wires are the fifth and final installment of my 5-part ear wires series. I call these the Flourish French Hooks because of their sensuous soft curves. You may recognize the flourish as one that I use frequently in many of my jewelry designs. It’s a simple but effective way to treat the ends of core wires. And the loops double as both pretty design elements and functional connection points.

The Flourish French Hooks are best suited for classical and romantic earring designs. I don’t use these ear wires frequently in my own earring designs, but they’ll work beautifully with both the Chalice Earrings and the Rosewood Earrings. They’ll also look great with these easy Beaded Tassels.

Ear wires are a small and often overlooked detail in jewelry design. But I believe strongly that it’s the smallest details that will set your jewelry apart from the crowd. So pay attention to the wires that you choose for your earrings. And always choose an ear wire silhouette that compliments your earring designs.

Copyright & Disclosure

You’re welcome to make and sell products from this tutorial. These ear wires are a common design, so I claim no exclusive rights to the design itself.

When it comes to my written tutorials, however, I do reserve exclusive rights to all images and written content. You may not reproduce or redistribute any portion of the Flourish French Hooks tutorial in any way, shape, or form.

This copyright applies to the printable PDF version of the Flourish French Hooks tutorial as well, and it’s included therein. You may share the free version of this tutorial only by linking directly to this page.

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Choosing the Right Jewelry Wire for Your Flourish French Hooks

For best results, use half-hard or dead soft solid copper or sterling silver wire. Half-hard wire will always save you time when it comes to making ear wires, but dead soft works well, too. You’ll just have to spend a bit of extra time work hardening ear wires that you make with dead soft wire. I used dead soft wire for the square ear wires that I made while writing this tutorial.

As a general rule, I don’t recommend using a filled wire when you’ll be hammering the ends of the wire, as we will do in this tutorial. I also don’t recommend plated or anodized craft wire for this tutorial because those types of wire are rarely hard enough to retain their shape, and even a soft mallet can ruin the finish coat on craft wire.

Materials Needed to Make the Flourish French Hooks

The only material needed to create perfectly matched ear wires is 20g solid jewelry wire. I used dead soft copper wire, pictured here, while writing this tutorial.
  • 20ga Wire – 5 inches (13 cm) per pair

I usually use half-hard copper wire to make ear wires, but I’m currently out of half-hard 20g wire. So, I used dead soft copper wire while writing this tutorial.

The only difference between the two tempers is that you’ll need to spend more time work hardening dead soft ear wires. That’s why I prefer to use half-hard wire for earring findings — it saves time.

I’ve provided links above to my preferred source (riogrande.com) for both tempers. Choose whichever temper you like to work with best.

Tools Needed to Make the Flourish French Hooks

The tools needed to create the Flourish Ear Wires are pictured here and itemized below.

Finished Size

The Flourish French Hooks are about 1/2-inch wide and 3/4-inch long.

20g wire is my preference for pierced ear wires. It’s the only gauge that I use for ear wires unless someone specifically asks for a smaller or larger gauge. Commercial ear wires typically range between 18g and 22g. So 20g is a comfortable size for almost everyone with pierced ears.

Skill Level: Beginner

This is a basic wirework project that can be achieved by someone who has never worked with wire before.

How to Make the Flourish French Hooks

The Flourish French Hooks are quick and easy to make. And you can easily change them up a bit by simply choosing different mandrel sizes for the curves.

If you’re making these ear wires for very dainty earrings, use round nose pliers instead of the stepped bail-making pliers to form the flourish. Round nose pliers will allow you to make smaller and more delicate curls.

Step 1

Straighten a length of 20ga wire by running it between your fingers or the jaws of your Nylon jaw pliers a few times. Once the wire is nice and straight, measure and cut a 5-inch length of wire.

Use your fine-point permanent marker to mark the center point of your wire.

Step 1 - Measure and cut a 5-inch length of wire and mark the center point, as shown.

Step 2

The key to making matched sets of ear wires is to create both wires at the same time, which is what we’re going to do today.

Use your flat nose pliers to form a sharp 90-degree bend at the center mark of your 5-inch wire. Then carefully fold the wire in half by gradually tightening that bend until the two ends of your wire are parallel.

Step 2 - Begin folding the wire in half with flat nose pliers, as shown.

Step 3

Tighten the fold by squeezing it closed with the tips of your flat-nose pliers, as shown.

Step 3 - Tighten the fold by squeezing it closed with the tips of your flat nose pliers, as shown.

Step 4

Check the ends of your wire to make sure they’re even. If not, trim the wire so that both ends are the same length.  

Step 4 - Trim the cut ends of your wires evenly with wire cutters, as shown.

Step 5

Use your chasing hammer and bench block to paddle about 1/4-inch of the cut ends of your folded wire, as shown.

Use your needle file to smooth and shape the paddled ends, if necessary.

Step 5 - Paddle the cut ends of the folded wire with a chasing hammer and bench block, as shown.

Step 6

Grasp the paddled ends of the wire with the 2mm step (the smallest step) of your bail-making pliers, as shown.

Step 6 - Grasp the tips of the paddled ends with your bail-making pliers, as shown.

Step 7

Using the thumb of your free hand, firmly roll the wires about 3/4 of the way around the 2mm mandrel, as shown.

Step 7 - Roll the wires around the 2mm step of the bail-making pliers, as shown.

Step 8

Now grasp the curled ends of the wire between the 2mm and 3mm steps of your bail-making pliers.

Make sure that the open ends of the curls are resting on the top of the 2mm mandrel, as shown.

Step 8 - prepare to make the final loop of the flourish, as shown.

Step 9

Now, roll the straight length of wire around the 3mm step until the wire shafts touch the small curls made in Step 7.

This completes the decorative flourish on your ear wires.  

Step 9 - Complete the flourish, as shown.

Step 10

Grasp the straight shaft of your ear wires between the two largest steps of your bail-making pliers.

Make sure that the curled ends of your wire are resting against the 8mm step (the second largest step) of your bail-making pliers, as shown.

Step 10 - Grasp the wires between the two largest steps of the bail pliers, as shown.

Step 11

Use your fingers to roll the straight length of wire all the way around the 9mm step of your bail-making pliers, as shown.

Step 11 - Roll the straight length of the wire around the 9mm step of the bail pliers, as shown.

Step 12

Grasp the folded tip of your ear wires with the 3mm step (the second step) of your bail-making pliers, as shown.

Step 12 - Grasp the folded end of the wire with the tips of the bail pliers, as shown.

Step 13

Use your fingers to create a 3mm bend at the tips of your ear wires, as shown.

Step 13 - Roll the wires half way around the 3mm step of the bail pliers, as shown.

Step 14

Snip the folded end off your ear wires with your wire cutters.

Make sure that the beveled side of your wire cutters is facing the fold, as shown. This gives you the cleanest cut.

Step 14 - Separate the two wires by trimming off the fold with wire cutters, as shown.

Step 15

Use your chasing hammer and bench block to slightly flatten the large loops of your flourish, the tips of the ear wires, and the top curve of your wires, as shown.

Step 15 - Use a chasing hammer and bench block to form the wires, as shown.

Step 16

Now use your soft mallet and bench block to further harden your ear wires. Just tap gently and evenly all around the wires. But be careful to avoid flattening the small curl on your flourish.

Step 16 - Use a soft mallet and bench block to harden the wires, as shown.

Step 17

Use your needle file to smooth and round off the cut ends of your Flourish French Hooks.

Step 17 - Use a needle file to shape and smooth the hook ends of the Flourish Ear Wires, as shown.

That’s it. Your romantic Flourish French Hooks are now complete and ready to use. You can patina them now if you like. Or just leave them bright and patina along with whatever you decide to attach them to.

More Ear Wire Styles

As I mentioned above, the Flourish French Hooks are the fifth in a 5-part series of ear wire tutorials. The other ear wire shapes that we covered in the series are linked below.

  1. Basic French Hooks
  2. Marquis Ear Wires
  3. Circle Ear Wires
  4. Square Ear Wires

All of these ear wires are formed using the same basic principal of shaping both wires at the same time. This allows you to create perfectly matched pairs of ear wires. In any shape. Every time.

Thank You!

Thanks so much for joining me today. I hope you enjoyed creating the Flourish Ear Wires. If you’d like a printable PDF version of this tutorial, you can find it here.

Also, be sure to add my Etsy shop to your favorites for the latest ad-free printable PDF tutorials. As always, I’d love to see what you’ve made and hear your ideas and suggestions for new tutorials and blog posts. So, be sure to connect with me @door44studios on PinterestInstagram, and Facebook.

Until next time, go make something beautiful!

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Learn to make your own custom ear wires with a pretty flourish with this free wire jewelry tutorial. I'll show you the secret to making perfectly matched pairs of ear wires. Every time! The path to wire weaving mastery begins at Door 44 Studios.