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

How to hand coil

Question: [In lessons such as the Coiled Bangle or Ornate Ring] regarding the coiling around the main frame of wire. Can you coil it with your round nose pliers and then slip it on to the frame wire? Other wise, I am having difficult working with such long pieces of wire. Do you cut your wire into more manageable sizes? Or do you start in the middle of the frame and wrap one way and then the other.

Answer: I normally cut a piece of wire that is no longer than my arms length, about 2 feet or under. Then I attach it to the frame by coiling once or twice. This is done by holding the frame and a short 1 inch tail with my left hand, and then holding the end of the long wire with my right hand (all this if you are right handed, of course). Then I pretend I'm sewing, holding only the end of the wire. I don't use the pliers, only my fingers. I don't run the wire along the length of the wire, or else it gets really springy.

I slip the wire through the work, from back to front, and pull it as if I were sewing. When the wire is long, you have to raise your hand to pull the entire length of wire (that's why it can't be longer than your arm). So it's very physical, to say the least.

Straightening wire

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