DIY Jewelry with Stacey: Mo’ Jump Rings

DIY-Jewelry-Stacey-Bayliff111It may not be well known, but I love to make chainmail jewelry.

You’re probably thinking “Chainmail? That stuff the medieval knights wore?” Yeah, that’s the origins of it. But with the creativity of modern artists, there are so many beautiful items that can be made using age old materials.

Today chainmail can refer to any of the “weaves” or patterns of connecting jump rings together. One of my favorite weaves is called Mobius Flowers. Once you learn how to make a basic Mobius Flower unit, you will be able to configure them in a variety of ways to make earrings, bracelets and necklaces.

Red_Chainmail_Jewelry

MaterialsMaterials

2 pair- flat nose jewelry pliers

1 set- silver plated, bar & toggle clasp

54- 8mm, 18 gauge, colored copper jump-rings, red

20- 5mm, 18 gauge, colored copper jump-rings, silver

 

Before Beginning

Hopefully by now you are quite proficient at opening and closing jump rings, but if not take a look back at the instructions given in the “Are You Ready to RHUMBA?” post. After you complete this project you should be able to open and close them in your sleep!

For the instructional photos, I tried to choose 3 ring colors that were different enough so they would show the twisting detail easily. The color combination doesn’t really fit my style, so for my final bracelet I chose red.

I usually try to offer instructions that include materials that are readily available through the main craft stores like Hobby Lobby, JoAnns or Michaels. Since jump rings are mainly used as connecting pieces in jewelry and not as the main elements, it is difficult to find quality rings in anything other than the basic gold, silver, bronze, copper and sometimes nickel colors.

For any piece that begs for colored rings, I like to order them from the Jump Ring Lady. She offers a wide variety of rings and the service is great! What I like most about this company is the ability to order a sample page that displays all of the colors and sizes of rings that you can pick from. I keep this close by when planning a chainmail project. It makes shopping so easy.

Let’s get started!

Step 1 ~ Make Your Links

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(1) To create a link open two 8mm rings and close one.

(2) Attach the closed ring to one of the open rings and close. Lay this pair on the bead mat so that the links are side by side.

(3) Take the right link and flip it horizontally so that it sits atop the link that is on the left.

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(4) Weave the remaining open ring through the center of the linked pair and close. Lay the trio so that the double link is on the left and the single is on the right.

(5) Flip the right ring so that it sits atop the double link. Now you should have a pretty little spiral called a Mobius Flower.

Continue with steps 1-5 until you have eighteen Mobius Flower units.

Step 2 ~ Put Them Together 

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(1) To link the Mobius Flower units together, open all of the 5mm rings.

(2) Weave two Mobius Flower units onto a 5mm ring and close it.

(3) Then attach a 5mm ring to one side of this chain of flowers. Weave a Mobius Flower link to that 5mm ring and close.

Continue adding flower links in this manner until all of them are chained together.

Step 3 ~ Add a Clasp 

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(1) On one end of the chain add a 5mm ring. Connect the round toggle part of the clasp to this ring and close.

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(2) On the opposite end add a 5mm ring. Connect the bar part of the clasp to this ring and close.

Note:  If you need a little more room for the bar to slide into the toggle easily, try adding a second 5mm ring before attaching the bar.

Keep Going!

This is another project that can lead to any possibility.

Chainmal_Earrings

Just a short chain of Mobius Flowers can make a lovely pair of earrings. The size of rings can easily be varied for a stronger look.

Blue_Chainmal_Necklace

Mobius Flowers can even have more than 3 rings in each link. ~ Just remember you may need to use larger than a 5mm ring to connect the flowers if you use more than 3 rings together.

Get creative with color combinations.

This pretty piece done in cool blues feels very “coastal.”

Chainmail_Necklace_Charm
Also, remember that one of the easiest ways to add personality to this project is to add a charm.

Here’s a dragonfly charm that’s perfect for Spring.

Check craft stores for bags of assorted charms ~ as well as the bottom of your own jewelry box.  This is a great way to recycle single earrings.

Whatever you decide to try, have fun with your chainmail!

 

Stacey Bayliff, chain maille enthusiast and “Jack of all Crafts”

Stacey is a self-proclaimed “Jack-of-all-Crafts.”

Although an English as a Second Language teacher by profession, she has been cross-stitching, rubber stamping and making jewelry since she was a teenager.  Her most recent obsession is chain maille jewelry.

She lives in Columbus, Ohio with her husband and three children, where she enjoys reading, letterboxing, genealogy and watching reality tv.

A variety of Stacey’s jewelry creations can be found at Magpie Fair.

 

Comments

  1. Gabrielle says:

    The colors are great and a wonderful way to add some pop to any outfit! This looks great for layering on the arm too.

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