This winter has been so cold. At least we’ve only had one snowstorm in Seneca, same day as the crippling storm in Atlanta, but we missed any ice. (Plus, we don’t have much traffic).
I’ve been happy on sunny days to sit in front of my south-facing French doors in the bedroom, and work on my jewelry. It is quite warm and cozy. I have made a few items with the newer shaped beads, and I see more shapes with 2 holes are now available. I have drifted into metal, a little wire work and now am teaching myself to make chain maille jewelry. I have a very good book with basics in it, have acquired a couple of good and comfortable pliers, and quite a lot of jump rings in various colors and sizes. I like the anodized aluminum for the variety of bright colors and the very light weight. I think it might be my choice for fashion jewelry, including some of my fancy beads. I have tried some copper, too, since I find myself drawn to that metal in most jewelry. I have done a little work with 16, 18, 19, and 20 gauge jump rings, and I think I like the 18 and 19 gauge best for the feel of opening and closing the rings, plus the overall look of the finished piece.
First lesson I am learning is to make a nice neat close of each ring, no gaps or overlaps to snag or scratch. The skin should welcome the silky feel of the metal. Each gauge and diameter ring is a bit different, but I am getting decent with this. My book goes through a lot of technical info that will help with future projects, to make sure the rings fit together right for each piece, not too stiff and not too loose. I am starting on some simple examples of traditional patterns, determined to master each. A couple of patterns have surprised me for the difficulties at the beginning. I was also surprised at how soothing some are, like I find knitting to be soothing as the needles click and the pattern develops.
I am not leaving my beading behind, as the thrill of the colors, shapes, textures and stitch combinations makes me happy. The chain maille work is a different satisfaction, and combining the two will eventually happen for me. Here’s some of the work I’ve been doing lately. Click on each picture for a closer look.