How to Make Your Bear Claw Into Jewelry

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A lone bear’s claw can serve as a stunning pendant, as well as a reminder of a hunting experience or of a relative who gave you their claw. The easiest way to create a bear’s claw pendant is to use wire-wrapping techniques. Wire-wrapping can securely hold your bear’s claw in a pendant without using any glue. In addition, wire wrapping is such an individualized craft that your pendant is certain to be unique.

Things You'll Need

  • Bear claw
  • 15 inches, 18 or 20 gauge wire
  • Cutting pliers
  • Nail polish
  • Chain-nose pliers
  • Cord or chain

Polish your bear’s claw. You can usually do this with a rawhide polishing cloth or a suede cloth used for cleaning glasses. If you want to make your claw even shinier, you can paint it carefully with clear nail polish.

Cut a 15-inch length of 18 or 20 gauge wire using cutting pliers. The 18 gauge wire, which is thicker, will hold your pendant more securely; however, the thinner 20 gauge wire is easier to work into intricate shapes. You will have to decide which one to use based on the complexity of your pendant design.

Wrap one end of your wire around the end of your round-nose pliers twice to create a coil of two rings. Use this loop to string your pendant onto a cord or chain; be sure the loop is large enough to accommodate your cord. Make a triple loop instead of a double loop to ensure your pendant won’t fall off.

Wrap the wire around your bear’s claw. Use your hands to make wide turns and angles. Use pliers to create sharp bends. Create a cage for your pendant by wrapping the wire in a spiral around the claw, or create a more complicated design that incorporates loops and swirls.

Grasp the wire with chain-nose pliers and make a small, sharp twist in the middle after you finished wrapping your pendant. This twist tightens the wire around the claw and makes it less likely that your pendant will slip out. If you wrapped the claw primarily with your hand instead of pliers, you might need to make several twists to tighten the wire enough. Space them out in an aesthetically pleasing fashion.

File the ends of the wires to remove any sharp edges. You can use a nail file if you don’t have a jeweler’s file.

Thread your chain or cord through the loop on the top of your pendant to finish your necklace.

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