While raiding your husband's tool box for those first pair of pliers may have worked when your jewelry-making fever first struck, it's always recommended to buy the best tools you can afford. So what exactly does a good set of pliers run and which ones are the best? Well, it just so happens that Tracy Stanley gave us the 411 on the Bead Cruise so I thought I'd pass the scoop along to you.
We've featured Lindstrom pliers before and it took me a good 15 years of jewelry making before I finally invested in them. Ah, what was I waiting for? These are heaven, your hand never gets tired forming those wrapped loops. If you have a wish list, put these on it! Lindstrom pliers are around $50 a pair. They are of the highest quality and will last a lifetime.
A good middle of the road pair are German made pliers. I actually bought this pair as my first pliers. They are rosary pliers and have a cutter on one side, very handy. They lasted for many a year until I lost them in a move. There are other pliers out there of similar quality and price. Sharilynn Miller wrote a great review on Baby Wubbers. These pliers range from $20-30 a pair.
And then there are the ones that you use in a pinch or picked up because they were a good deal. What can I say, we do what we can do, right? You'll find pliers made in China and Pakistan for $3-10. The problem with inexpensive pliers is you get what you pay for. Round nose ones may not be round! There may be mars or imperfections that ruin your wire. They are not as durable or as comfortable as the higher quality. So if you are finding results in your wire work that are less than satisfactory, it may not be you, it may be those pliers!
Do you have a favorite brand of pliers to recommend? We'd love to hear about it.
All photos from Rings & Things.