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A head pin is a jewelry making finding similar to a straight pin. It is basically a straight piece of wire with one large end. The large end is large enough so that it can't pass through the hole in a bead. Most head pins are manufactured by a machine with a head that is identical to the head on a pin. In this page, we will show a couple of ways that you can make a head pin using a straight segment of wire.
In the earrings shown above-right you can view two ways of taking a straight segment of wire and converting it into a head pin. The first approach to making a head pin is to make one or more loops in the wire in a pattern like the Queen of Clubs Earrings shown with the amethyst bead above-left. The second approach is to flatten one end of the wire using a chasing hammer and an anvil. You can view this approach in the two earrings above-right.
Making the Queen of Clubs head pin is done with three pegs in a triangle pattern as shown at right. The finished head pin is shown at left. The instructions for making this head pin can be found by selecting either picture.
To make a head pin by flattening one end of a segment of wire requires the use of a chasing hammer and anvil. Start with a segment of 20 gauge wire about 2 1/2 inches long. Place this segment of wire on your anvil and hammer the last 5/8" of wire with the rounded side of your chasing hammer. You will need to do a lot of hammering. Each of the wire segments shown here were hammered for about 4-5 minutes. Note that the wire is not perfectly symmetrical after the hammering. When you have flattened the wire adequately, you will need to cut the end with your flush cutter. You can cut the end square as shown above-right, or you can cut the end into a point as shown in the earrings in the center at the top of this page. This style of head pin is called "paddles" because they resemble a paddle for a canoe or boat.
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