October 24, 2010

Horsefeathers Earrings

Horsefeathers is a weave by Corvus, as well as the MWW weave challenge for Oct. 2010; it's an interesting variation of Half Persian 3-in-1, not complicated at all, but it did take me a while to figure out where the extra should go.

Once I confirmed that I got it thru the right "eyes", it went pretty fast.  But then, I also realized how different the 3 sides look, and that it's not going to be easy to keep it from rolling around if made into a bracelet.

Sooo.... I started looking for ways to stabilize it, something that will still show off its 3 different looks from top, side, and bottom.  And here's what I got: a pair of earrings with short strips of the weave connected top side inwards, does that make sense?  I mean, what shows as the outer rim of the earring is what's considered the bottom side of the weave, and the top side of the weave (where the extra rings are added) becomes the inside edge of the earring.  It's really not that bad; I should have taken a WIP picture..

Specs:

All bright aluminum rings, 1.2mm, AR 4.91 (except the smaller connector rings), makes for a pair of good size and light weight earrings.

October 23, 2010

My Pet Dragon

My very own pet dragon! Isn't he the cutest?!  This is my first try at multi-weave, semi-free form chainmaille.  Multi-weave for the combination of Dragonback (or Alligator), Byzantine, Box, and Mobius; semi-free form for improvising the neck and adding the paws.  I followed the fantastic tutorial by Derailed on MAIL.  The step by step instructions are easy to follow, lots of pictures and arrows pointing at where to add rings, that's how I like to read tutorials :-)

The tutorial describes the main body with scales.  I added the paws, because all the dragons that I grew up with (yes, I grew up with dragons, in movies, paintings, story books) always have paws.  They also have whiskers and antennas, but I don't know how to add those ...  I'd imagine some wire work would do it, like Corvus's dragons; look for her fantastic copper dragon in MaillersWorldWide!)

Oh, and my dragon also wears shoulder pads and hoop earrings.  Very fashionable:-)  Can you see the earrings?  Big old double hoops!  The shoulder pads/cape is a slight variation from the tutorial. I learned it from Derailed's other maille critters, seriously awesome!

OK, back to my guy; he's flexible enough to curl up for nap.  The neck moves very well; the body section from neck to belly is kind of stiff compared to rest of the body, my guess is because I fussed so much over the shoulder pads that I added a few too many rings.  Anyhow, he'll curl up all right, even chase after his own tail:-)  Awww, the poor thing is pooped from all the jumping and posing all day; it's a lot of hard work to look so adorable:-)

Specs:

All rings are stainless steel, WD 1.2mm, 3/16" ID from C&T Designs, and 5/32" ID from Blue Buddha (F18 SSTL); scales are bright aluminum also from Blue Buddha.  I did have to use larger rings (1/4" ID) to include the key ring into the box weave at his jaws.  That's it.  Not very ring hungry, but the stainless steel part put my hands totally out of commission for quite a while (Advils helped:-)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  2015 Update  ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Interested in purchasing one of these?  I'd be happy to make a brand new one for you as a custom made-to-order in my online studio DaisyKreates.com.  Thank you!!










>>>>>>>>>>>>  <<<<<<<<<<<<<

October 9, 2010

Oops!

That's the name of this weave, Oops, although I'd say there's nothing oops about it; in fact, it's now my current favorite weave, so addictive, can't stop once started, that's how this bracelet got to 8 1/2" long...

Oops is the a.k.a. name of European 4-in-1 Unbalanced.  It's best looking when done in tight ratio with fine rings.  It's also obviously a very ring-hungry weave, and more time consuming than most other European family weaves.  But the textile feel of the final work is well worth the effort.

Since I couldn't stop "Oopsing" (is that a word?), and I didn't have enough rings for another bracelet, so I made a finger ring to match:-)  Having joined a few other weaves, I was prepared to do battle on joining Oops while I found it surprisingly easy!  Almost like zipping up two sides of Peyote stitches, the rings that are supposed to meet up met up without any couching or coercing from me.  The only thing I'd say I would do over is using a finer gauge of rings which should allow for a closer size of finger ring.  As this ring goes, it's wee bigger than I wanted.  But to reduce it, it'll have to lose 2 columns of rings since Oops kind of works in pairs when joined end to end, and that would make the ring too small for me.

Now only if I had a professional mannequin hand display for my work...  My own hand is not doing justice to this fine set of "Oops":-)

Specs:

All bright aluminum rings from TRL, WD 1.2mm, ID 4.18mm, AR ~3.48 which is at the high end of AR for Oops.  Bracelet measures at 1" wide and 8 1/2" long, including the sterling silver slider clasp.  The finger ring is 7/8" long, and about size 9.

October 7, 2010

Three Amigos

Bracelet, finger ring, and pendant.

All made in double Vipera Berus (VB) pattern, plus a Vipera Star toggle ring.  The thought of so many "vipers" in one place is not my thing, but while in chainmaille, they make for wonderful chunky jewelry.

Vipera Berus is a very "weave-like" pattern, specially when done in double, they have very interesting flow.  When I look at it, my eyes just want to follow the rings, like they're just one long strand from beginning to end, which we know are not, but don't they look like they were?

Anyway, I made the small donut a while back (check it out here) and I've been wearing it as a pendant off a simple black leather choker necklace.  Had always wanted to make a collection out of it just because I like the pattern so much.  Lucky me that Maillers Worldwide has VB as the September 2010 weave challenge; I took the opportunity to make a bracelet and a finger ring.

Now, if you can hold one of these guys in your hand, you'll feel how thick they are.  Most bracelet clasps would look wimpy for such a big boy.  To fashion something of similar thickness, I dug thru MAIL and found Vipera Star.  After a few experiments, this is the latest version.  Not sure if I'm totally happy with it, but it's a start and I can see potentials in other similar applications.  So, it's all good in the end:-)

Specs:

The finger ring (however unpractical) is niobium (Nb), WD 1.2mm, ID 6.4mm; the bracelet is bright aluminum (BA), WD 1.2mm, ID 4.18mm.  As to the Vipera Star toggle, I didn't write down the ring sizes, and I'm not about to take it apart to measure them now.  So next time, when I make another one, I'll have to remember to grab a pen and paper...

More photos here.

Très GSG


I name this one "Très GSG", because a typical GSG has 2 rows, this has 3 rows, so "very" GSG:-).   I know, the earrings look diamond-shaped, but they are none the less still GSG 3-by-3.

This set is a long way coming.  It's designed and made specifically for my dear friend Milly, who likes the colors of my Technicolor Bumble Bees bracelet, but wants a pattern bit more dense, about 3/4" wide, and suitable for daily wear.

Knowing our "day job" tends to require much time at the keyboard and frequent trips thru airport check points, I ruled out any rope or chunky pattern.  And it needs to be flexible, definitely flat in profile, enough weight so that you'll notice in case it's off the wrist, but not too much that you're constantly reminded of it being there.  Right, so that ruled out Dragonscale also.

After much net-surfing, I eventually decided to go with the vertical pattern of Half Persian 3-in-1 Sheet 6, which is essentially GSG.  Come to think of it, I suppose this is more of a GSG 3-columns, than 3-rows?  Anyway, the main body of bracelet and earrings was straight forward to weave, but the whole set took me a while to fit all the details together.  The fish toggle is one of a dozen incarnations before I settle on this version.  Nope, there is no religious connotations, at least I wasn't thinking of or planning on any such thing. I just prefer the double twist at the fish tail which matches the GSG pattern.  The wave toggle bar fits nicely with the fish motif; when the wave bar is perpendicular (to the fish body), it looks like a fish resting among sea weeds; when it's parallel, the fish is swimming in water.  OK, that's my story, and I'm sticking to it:-)

Specs:

Bracelet: All niobium (Nb) rings from TRL, WD 1.2mm, ID 6.6mm, except for rings at clasp points are 1.2mm, ID 3.83mm.  Toggle is handmade in 1.6mm full-hard Nb wire.  Bracelet width is just under 3/4"; total length is 7 1/2" while clasped on.

Earrings: Rings are grade 5 titanium (Ti) also from TRL, WD 1.2mm, ID 6.2mm. I switched to Ti rings for earrings because they are much lighter than Nb, easier on ears.  Ear wires are handmade from 1.0mm Nb wire, dotted with green AB seed beads.



The whole set was put together while in Nb's natural color, then anodized after all assembled. Here's what the bracelet looked like before the color bath.  A subtle, understated, almost hematite kind of color.  Not bad, huh?  I really liked it.  My SIL said, out of all the metal colors she'd seen so far, this is by far her favorite.  Yep, same here.  Maybe I'll make another one and leave it in its natural dark gray...

Interesting note on the earrings, the grade 5 Ti rings are anodized without chemical etching, so the colors are more muted than the Nb ear wires or the bracelet.  Nothing that affects the final appearance, just a fun fact, for geeks like me:-)