I always purchased aluminum electric fence wire from my local Tractor Supply for use as sculpture wire. You can get around a quarter mile of the stuff for around fifteen dollars, a good bargain, if you ask me. It comes in a spool for easy storage and dispensing. Any store that supplies farmers or hardwares should carry the wire. You can buy it in different thicknesses, depending on the project. I used it for wire armatures for elementary students, so I bought thinner wire they could bend easily. Steel wire (stovepipe) is not very good for this purpose, mainly because of the difficulty of bending and its tendency to rust. I would go through a spool every two years.