Hi there!

I'm Eni Oken, artist and author of hundreds of articles, tutorials and books in print and online. For over 30 years I've explored art, color theory, fantasy and ornamental design.

Certified Zentangle® Teacher

Certified Zentangle® Teacher

Holding a piece while working

I received the following question:

"I'm just learning wrapping and am using copper wire until I am skilled enough to move on to silver. When I'm wrapping I sometimes hold the piece steady with pliers, but I'm wondering if this is a bad habit to get into...

I don't know, since silver is a softer metal, if I would put dents in my work if I hold it with pliers.... ?? Is it okay to use pliers, or should one just hold on with your fingers -- and if so, how do you keep the piece stable while wrapping?"

The answer:
I think anything you can do to make your life easier is welcome, even holding pieces with pliers. To avoid making dents on the metal, try buying a product call PLASTI DIP (I bought mine though Amazon) and coat an old pair of chain nose or flat nose pliers with them, so they don't mark your silver. Make sure to use an older pair of pliers.

I alternate between holding pieces with pliers and holding with my hands. When the piece is too delicate or small, I hold it with the pliers.

Ruby Red Bumblebee ring

Attaching a bead to a jumpring