Wednesday, 11 August 2010

A charm bracelet and the first helm chain

Earlier this year I was asked by a friend how much it would cost for me to make a charm bracelet for her daughter's 18th birthday present.

I quoted a price of £50 ish and she agreed that I could go ahead. We agreed that I'd make a byzantine weave bracelet with 6 places to attach charms on it. She already had one charm to attach but it would leave space for more in the future.

Sterling silver byzantine charm bracelet
This photo shows a similar bracelet to that of the one I produced for the friend's daughter. And, luckily for me, the price of the bracelet for the friend was £55 at the time of making, so I think I'm getting better at pricing items.

After spending the last year using mainly byzantine weave in my jewellery I decided it was time to try a few more weaves. There are numerous books out there but none that is considered the 'definitive' chain maille book, instead the best sources of inspiration and instructions are found on the World Wide Web. There I found instructions for a number of different weaves, all of which I like the idea of completing, and so I'm working through some different ones.

Here is a helm chain weave bracelet that I made recently in sterling silver using 1mm thick wire. For this project I made my own jump rings, there are 2 sizes used in the helm weave and I chose to use rings with an inner diameter of 3.5 mm and 6 mm. This weave involves the 'capture' of some of the rings meaning that the captured rings are held between two layers of rings but are not actually through any of the other rings themselves.
Sterling silver helm chain bracelet
This weave hangs well on the wrist and the bracelet is 19.5 cm (7.7") long which is a comfortable length for me.

Next time, clasps!

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