Things You'll Need
- 28- or 32-gauge beading wire
- Wire cutters
- Glass seed beads
- Needle-nose pliers
Myths, legends and symbolism differ from East to West concerning the dragonfly, though in Japan particularly, "...the dragonfly is symbolic of success, victory, happiness, strength and courage," claims the website "unsolvedmysteries.com." The website also claims that the Japanese used dragonflies to ornament their textiles and furnishings as early as the 11th century. People continue to use dragonflies as ornamentation today, particularly in the form of jewelry. Using primarily wire and beads, you can easily construct your own dragonfly of any size and color you wish.
Cut two pieces of wire 8 inches long with the wire cutters. String beads on each piece of the wire leaving 1 inch free on either end of the wire.
Bend one piece of beaded wire into a perfect circle. Push one end of the 1 inch of bare wire through the hole of the final bead on the opposite side. Twist this piece of wire around the wire underneath the first, second and third beads. Leave the other 1-inch piece of the wire alone, as you'll use it in step 3.
Bend your perfect circle into a figure eight by squeezing the circle in half with the remaining 1 inch wire end up against the top of the circle. Make sure the sides are perfectly symmetrical. Wrap the piece of 1 inch wire around the middle of the figure eight and twist the sides to hold it in place.
Repeat steps 1 to 3 with the other piece of beaded wire.
Cut an 8-inch piece of wire for the body of the dragonfly. Fold it in half, leaving a slight space at the crease.
Cut a 1/2-inch piece of wire. Slide it through the slight space at the crease in your folded dragonfly's body.
Shape the 1/2 inch piece of wire into a heart with your needle-nose pliers. Pull the two sides of the heart apart until the pieces resemble curved antennae. This is the antennae of your dragonfly and it should still be looped through the body of the dragonfly.
Slide three beads onto the body of your dragonfly, through the two pieces of wire, to hold the antennae firmly in place.
Position your two wings sandwiched between the two pieces of wire, directly after the three beads you just strung. Twist the wire of the body of the firefly around the wings once tightly to hold them firmly in place.
String beads on the remainder of the body of the dragonfly until there is just 1 inch of wire remaining. Loop that piece of wire through the hole of the last bead several times to hold everything in place. Cut away pieces of excess wire.
Lane Cummings is originally from New York City. She attended the High School of Performing Arts in dance before receiving her Bachelor of Arts in literature and her Master of Arts in Russian literature at the University of Chicago. She has lived in St. Petersburg, Russia, where she lectured and studied Russian. She began writing professionally in 2004 for the "St. Petersburg Times."