I've always liked the helm weave in chain mail work. It is relatively easy. But consider the viper weave too. The smaller rings are offset and prettily so.  Check out these two viper weave chain mail tutorials which show how using contrast colors also makes the design pop!  The photographs from both instructors are different so that could help you understand where the rings go. Also each instructor gives different tips.

The Beadman's Viper Chain Mail Tutorial

The Beadman's tutorial, for example, uses a simple wire hook to hold on the end of the work. It always help to "extend" the work using paper clips, wire ties (my favorite) so you can grip it properly. This tutorial uses 16 G rings which makes for visually strong jewelry especially if you do not like working with smaller gauges.

Alix over on her blog, The Alchemists Vessel, shows how to complete a bracelet with this weave using 18 G rings.  She also has a store on Etsy.

New to chain mail? Please note that you must get the correct id (internal diameter) of the rings as well as the gauge otherwise the weave will not work. So no, the general jump rings you get from regular jewelry suppliers is likely not going to do it for you! You can tell because no id is given.

The Alchemists Vessel's Viper Chain Mail Tutorial

If  you like working with colored rings like the anodized aluminum ones, it helps to coat your pliers with a rubbery protective coat like Tool Magic ( see my past post on What to Do if Your Tools Mark Your Jewelry Wire). Otherwise the colored parts will be scratched off. I only use Tool Magic for chain mail work. Wire work is less of a problem especially when you are reasonably proficient with this technique.

The other option is to use alternative metals like brass, bronze and copper for contrast.

Alix also had to point out that although chain mail was once used for armor, these decorative chain mail jewelry you can make will not protect you from a variety of weapons!  Chain mail was originally used to protect knights from sword and axe cuts but was no match for arrows especially English long bows, and later on, bullets. And thus went out of favor. Butchers still use stainless steel chain mail gloves for protection (see my past post on Ancient and Modern Uses of Chain Mail which includes how some movies went about creating chain mail).

I do receive a small fee for any products purchased through affiliate links. This goes towards the support of this blog and to provide resource information to readers. The opinions expressed are solely my own. They would be the same whether or not I receive any compensation.

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