Make your own shark tooth necklace with this quick and easy wire wrap, then try it out on any other triangular object to make a variety of custom pendants.
During our most recent (of many) field trips to what seems to be every single dinosaur museum in the known universe, my little girls participated in a pretend paleontology dig, and they found themselves a nice little treasure trove of shark teeth.
Hmmm…what does one do with a shark tooth? Wear it around your neck, obviously!
While a lot of wire wrapping and jewelry making projects take practice (my soldered magnifying necklace tutorial, while do-able, is not for the faint of heart!), wire wrapping a shark tooth to create a pendant that you can hang on any necklace is surprisingly easy. The wire that you’ll use is soft enough to bend by hand, and although you’ll want a pair of needle-nose pliers and some wire cutters to finish it off, you or somebody you know has those in a toolbox somewhere near you.
Best of all, a wire wrapped shark tooth doesn’t have to be perfectly done to look perfect. Read on, and I’ll show you how to wire wrap your tooth (or any other triangular object) in a way that will be sturdy and look great, all in about five minutes:
To begin, you’ll need a shark tooth (or other triangular object), and 18-gauge silver or copper wire, easily obtainable in any craft or jewelry supply store. Depending on the size of your shark tooth, you may be afraid that 18-gauge wire will look a little heavy–go ahead and bump up to 20-gauge wire if you’re making this project for an adult or older kid, but I find that my girls will inadvertently break any jewelry that I make for them if I use any wire higher than 18-gauge. Kids are rough!
Working directly from your spool so you don’t have to worry about running short of wire, unspool a good four inches of wire (that’s longer than I have in this particular photo, because I’ve made these before, but go long for yourself, at least the first few times), and put it behind your shark tooth there at the four-inch mark, running diagonally from the top left to the bottom right of the tooth.
Always working from the spool end, unspool some more wire and, as firmly as you can (meaning that a tight wrap is better, but even a looser wrap is going to be okay), wrap the wire up and over the top right corner of the shark tooth, and bring it down behind the shark tooth, pointing to the bottom left of the tooth.
Bring the spool end of the wire to the front from the bottom left of the shark tooth, and, as firmly as you can, wrap the wire up and over the top left corner of the shark tooth, and bring it down behind the shark tooth, pointing to the bottom right of the tooth.
Repeat this wrap a second time, so that each top corner of the shark tooth is wrapped twice. At the end of that second left corner wrap, however, don’t bring the wire back down behind the tooth, but instead unspool an extra four inches of wire, then cut it off at that point.
You now have two ends of wire, one coming straight up from behind the tooth, and the other coming straight up from in front of the tooth. As firmly as you can and as close to the top of the tooth as you can, twist these two wires together once or twice. You’ll be able to feel as you do that it draws the corner wire wraps a little tighter.
At this point, stop and check that your wire wrapping is secure enough to hold your shark tooth. If it’s too loose, just unwrap it and try again.
Twist your two wires together until one is in front and one is in back–this is how you’ll make a loop for the necklace that’s going the right way, so that the shark tooth won’t twist sideways on its chain.
With your needle-nose pliers, take one wire and bend it into a loop that goes in a front-to-back orientation. Take the other wire and bend it into an identical loop that goes the opposite way. This might look a little rough if you’re a novice, but don’t worry–seriously, it’s a shark tooth. It’s going to look okay.
Hold the two loops together with the needle-nose pliers, and twist each wire a couple of times again around that twist below the loop, then cut. If the cut edges are sharp or stick out, press them into the twist by squeezing them between the needle-nose pliers.
Thread your shark tooth pendant onto any chain or length of hemp twine, and show it off proudly!