Wednesday, February 8, 2012

In My Studio - Chain Maille Weaves

Over the weekend I taught myself new chain mail weaves.   I am always on look out for new patterns, ideas and ways to improve my skills or provide a variety of design and styles.

The Spiral - "Magic Maille"- This is a fun and super simple pattern that I am hoping to incorporate it into some pieces.  The problem with this pattern is that in order to maintain the twist it must be made as an "eternity" chain, no clasp, no beginning or end. Below is a 8-1/2"" eternity bracelet in base metal gold tone manufactured jump rings.  The "Magic" part, when the chain is loose, it has a very light twist and looks open and messy, with a couple of turns of the wrist, the chain becomes a slinky, silky, and fluid spiral that rolls over itself and undulates across the length of chain.  The set of pictures in silver shows the process of twisting the chain.  You can make it as twisted or loose as you like.

Finally, after all the jump rings are connects and tidied up, you have a very pretty eternity wave or spiral chain.

The detail photos below, show just that, the detail of the spiral as the jump rings are linked or locked together.  In silver and gold base metal jump rings.  Different metals and colors lend the piece a different look although it is the same pattern.



The Celtic Knot:  I love it when friends find things that they think I can do and pass them along to me.  Shelly Moody of Green Witch Designs found this photo of a stunning pair of earrings. Unbeknown to me I actually had instructions on how to make this weave in a note book!  My images are not cooperating this morning, so I borrow the image Shelly sent to me.  (I will replace it later today)

 Why only two patterns?  Because I am only one person, and capable of just so much.  It does take time to spin the correct size jump rings, unless I am using manufactured or pre-cut rings.  Chain Maille, like any other craft, is a process.  Opening, linking and closing the rings is done by hand, and I mean by hand, a pairs of pliers in each hand and off you go!

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