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Metal wire used for jewelry making comes in many sizes and types. Wire is measured in a unit called "gauge" that often confuses people because a larger number means a smaller diameter wire. For example, a 26 gauge wire is very thin, and is typically used with tiny beads. A 16 gauge wire is a quite heavy wire used for making items like jump rings. The most popular wire gauges are 24ga, 20ga, and 18ga. Beading enthusiasts who do "wire wrapping" of beads and pendants typically use 22ga or 24ga wire. Metal workers often use 18ga or 16ga or even larger wires for techniques such as "hammering". Another factor in selecting metal wire is which metal to choose - wire for jewelry making is usually available in Sterling Silver, Gold-filled and Copper. Copper wire is available in its natural color - or with a colored Enamel surface - making wires available in all the colors of the rainbow.
|Sheri Ann Richerson|