Chain Maille is the art of making armour or jewellery by connecting metal rings to one another in a number of different ways, forming a mesh or a chain. The interlocking rings can be used to make lengths of chain or in the case of armour, a sheet of chain which can be woven into shapes.
I have always loved all types of jewellery chains, so when I discovered Chain Maille, I knew that it was something I really had to try. Fortunately there’s a myriad of learning tools on the internet because I couldn’t actually find anyone here in Adelaide who teaches the craft.
The major difficulty in teaching yourself Chain Maille is not the patterns or weaves but a distinct lack of readily available supplies! Local suppliers only stock plated jump rings which are great to learn with but from experience, don’t last very long which is one of the main reasons for our decision to use only Sterling, Silver Filled, Argentium or Gold Filled wire.
The silver plated rings were great to practice with but for a quality end product only sterling silver/gold filled really looks and wears the best. This means that any of our chain maille pieces may take a little longer to complete as some of the rings need to be sourced interstate or overseas, depending on size.
Luckily I have discovered that I love to learn new techniques because there are so many different chain maille weaves to try – and try I did. I find something very therapeutic in opening, weaving and closing the rings and the sense of satisfaction when I get it right and finish a piece is indescribable.
As most of our pieces will be made to order, any chain maille can be made in wire of choice and if the pattern requires stones, these too can be selected to suit.