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Chain mail jewelry making is like kumihimo, knitting, crochet and other such craft where the repetitive motion calms and soothes.  But chain mail has other things extra to offer - a mathematical challenge when calculating ring sizes and a chance to construct what looks like a complicated puzzle to non-practitioners!

The new book I just received, Linked: Innovative Chain Mail Jewelry Designs, explores some new ways to utilize chain mail in jewelry designs but still includes some easy and basic projects among the 22 for those just beginning in this craft.

Six different artisans contributed to this book, each bringing their own take on some popular and traditional weaves.  Together they cover ideas such as combining different weaves in a single design, using colored rings, twisted wire rings and mixing chain mail with metal and leather work.

The step by step directions and photographs are as clear as they can be short of a video. John Fetvedt also provided a good side article which demystifies the optional fusing or soldering of jump rings made from different metals.  Permanently closing the ring gives the piece a more finished look.

The Basics and More chapter at the end also includes helpful instructions on how to make your own rings.  The use of a wooden dowel to help guide a jewelry saw as it cuts through a metal coil is indeed a helpful tip. Anne Mitchell covers how to control the fit of chain mail weaves by using simple math to calculate the aspect ratio (AR).  There are also charts which show how AR affects the look of Byzantine and Full Persian weaves

One of my favorite designs from the book is the Art Deco necklace by Vanessa Walilko. She uses Swarovski rings and triangles to great effect!

Linked is an eclectic collection of chain mail designs which as a book, is not as cohesive as other chain mail books from a presentation point of view.  That's to be expected with 6 different artisans and a range of photographic styles, some more successful than others.  To be fair, chain mail jewelry is difficult to photograph! However, the book does offer some fresh ideas and chain mail enthusiasts would likely want to add this to their collection.


Before You Go :
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
Jewelry Making Tips - Jewelry Business Tips 


  1. I always wish I could afford all of these books on chainmaille you write about! I love doing it, with my favorites being dragonscale and persian and butterfly weaves

  2. This book sounds interesting. Years ago I purchased a lovely book on making chains but after I received it and began to browse through it, I realized it was intensive. The authoress was constantly advising one to anneal the chain at almost every step. I understood the logic of annealing but I had been looking for a simple book on basic chain mail, one that didn't require investing in a small kiln and torches.
    The book you reviewed appears to be geared to both the novice chain maker and the more advanced . . . so I guess I now have yet another book to add to my Amazon wish list. :)


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