Give Us A Ring Anytime…

A few days ago, when we were making the Trees of Life, I found an amethyst chip that struck me as being perfect for a ring! ¬†Amethyst being Jenny’s birthstone, it just had to be made for her, of course ūüôā ¬†I’d had a few goes at making rings but I’d never been entirely happy with them. ¬†This time, it turned out much better! ¬†In fact, I’ve been asked to make one ¬†like it for a friend ūüôā ¬†Have to get some more amethyst chips first! LOL! ¬†Many of these rings have the actual ring wrapped with a lighter wire, but I opted not to wrap this one.

Amethyst Ring

Amethyst Ring

There are many sites online that can help if you’re inmterested in wire working.¬† One of the best is Wire-Sculpture.com, take a look at Gold Filled Wire for one of their popular lines of wire!¬† You’ll find that there’s a wealth of information there.¬† CGMaille.com and MAIL (Maille Artisans International League) are excellent sites for information on chain maille.¬† I certainly recommend having¬† a go – it’s very rewarding!

Maille and more

In amongst the clutter of ideas that is my mind, there appeared a new phrase:¬†chain maille. Now I know where it came from – Jenny! ¬†She became enamoured of this fascinating technique for using wire in making jewellery. ¬†It was almost inevitable, then, that I’d become infected eventually. ¬†It finally happened during our wire working activities at the weekend! ¬† I had resisted but then it became necessary for me to actually get involved in order to provide a suitable chain for a pendant. ¬†I won’t pretend that it isn’t a challenge, but the rewards are great. ¬†In fact, it provides a huge number of possibilities for jewellery making!

My first piece uses the Helm technique:

My Heart In The Maille

My Heart In The Maille

The stone appeared earlier, in the The News on the Wire¬†post. ¬†It isn’t a gemstone, as far as I know, but I’ve actually had it for many years, since it was picked up on a local beach. ¬†I should say here that it is actually illegal to remove anything except trash from beaches! ¬†It’s a simple fact that if everybody did remove say a kilo’ of stones from a shingle beach, that beach would soon be facing a crisis unlike any natural erosion! ¬†In this case, I had maybe six stones, ranging from very small to barely medium sized. ¬†One or two stones, rarely removed, shouldn’t create a significant problem.

There are numerous resources on the web for wire working and chain maille. ¬†Wire working is something I’d recommend every jewellery maker have a go at. ¬†You’ll need a good selection of wire¬†gauges, and colours, and a basic set of tools, to which you can add a chasing hammer (a small ball pein hammer) and a steel bench block to act as an anvil. ¬†For chain maille, you’ll need much the same plus mandrels and other equipment for making your own jump rings¬†(unless you intend to buy ready made jump rings in bulk), to which you can add: patience!

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