Chain Maille Bracelet–My First Attempt

I am not, by nature, a patient person.  If a craft is taking too long to finish, I’ve been known to stop midway and hide it in a box.  If it makes it that far, it’s unlikely to ever see the light of day again, unless I decide to part it out for something else.  But once in a while, I lose interest but leave it where I can see it every day.  That stuff usually gets done at some point because the one thing that’s greater than my impatience for lengthy crafts is my impatience at staring at something half-finished.

I love chain maille jewelry.  I kept looking at it and thinking “It’s a bunch of metal hoops – how hard can it be?”  I finally decided to give it a shot and bought a couple of bags of rings and bracelet closures.  I only used one bag, and not even the entire thing.

chain maille 1

I didn’t buy the instruction book, but instead came home and looked at photos of bracelets online and decided I knew how to do it.  All I needed was a couple of pairs of pliers.

chain maille 2

I used a small, padded quilt pressing mat and some stick pins to hold my work down.

chain maille 3

That, my friends, is where I stopped.  In March.  However, I left it pinned to that board and I’ve been looking at it ever since.  Today was the day to finish.

chain maille 4

I really like the closure.

chain maille 5

My only regret is that it bunches together a bit, rather than keeping its shape when I wear it.  I still like it though, and will wear it anyway.  After all, it did take me three months to make.

chain maille 6

If you know of any good chain maille tutorials out there, send them my way.  I’m ready to try again…with a little guidance from someone who actually knows what they’re doing.

Great big THANK YOU to reader Sarah for sending me this link to Beading Daily, where they just happened to outline how to start a chain maille piece today!

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12 thoughts on “Chain Maille Bracelet–My First Attempt

  1. I’m the same way with projects… although sometimes I see something cute in the store, HAVE to buy it, it then goes onto my long list of projects to work on. And, since that long list is a mental list rather than a written-down one… sometimes it doesn’t see the light of day for many, many moons… when I suddenly unearth it during a cleaning frenzy (read: trying desperately to find something ELSE that is buried in a nook or drawer), and wonder what in the world I was thinking when I bought it.
    Impressed that you got it done! It turned out beautifully! I’ve done some chain maile, but nothing that ambitious! : )

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  2. Your chain maille bracelet looks great! I bought some rings to try some Byzantine style chain maille work, over four years ago, and they’re still sitting unused in the closet where I left them. I’ll get around to fiddling with them one of these days…

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  3. Hi Staci! Thanks for the message on my blog. Your bracelet is lovely! That is a great first attempt. Have a look at Jeff Olin’s CGmaille dot com website – he’s got some great tutorials there. Drop me an email if you need any specific guidance in particular – I’m just learning myself but I’d be glad to help.

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  4. Hi Staci,

    Congratulations on finishing your bracelet, and welcome to the addiction 😉 I’ve got a couple of free tutorials for weaves on my blog – if you’ve got any questions on anything maille-related, give me a shout! I love seeing people get started making maille and the many and varied things people end up making.

    Good luck, and have fun!

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