Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Ornament or cat toy?

I enjoy many different crafts - probably obvious from the assortment of ornaments I've made so far this year. One of the things I particularly enjoy is chain maille - putting together jump rings to make various objects.  I've made bracelets, necklaces, earrings, pendants and a cute little tree ornament. I've used metal rings - the norm - as well as rubber rings and glass rings. Chain maille isn't too hard although sometimes manipulating the rings can be tricky. The size of the rings you use makes or breaks the design. Aspect ratio - the ratio of the thickness of the jump ring to the size of the ring - is a critical part of making a design work. Different metals and thicker gauge rings can be more difficult to open and close smoothly. My favorite way to mess up is to mangle rings with my pliers.

I saw a chain maille Santa that could be used as an ornament or a pendant on pinterest. When I followed the link to the website I discovered the pattern came from a website in the UK - Beadsisters. They have some interesting patterns as well as kits and materials. I thought I should be able to find the right jump rings at one of my usual US sources but I had trouble finding the correct gauge and size in the right colors. I probably could have done a little arithmetic and found different combinations but there are not as many colored rings available as plain metal ones. I decided to give in to temptation and buy rings from Beadsisters. The rings arrived relatively quickly - along with a few extra kits (surprise!) - and I set in on the ornament. It went well and I had an adorable little santa.

But then there's the rest of the story. I brought it downstairs
from my craft room and set it on the coffee table waiting for a photo. A little later I heard my cat Pepper playing - chasing something all over the kitchen. Later when I put food in their bowl I noticed Santa on the floor next to the bowl. I guess we know what he was playing with! Hopefully he didn't bite or scratch it too much. I guess if he did it would hide any plier marks that I left on my rings.

I wonder if I could make a bigger ornament with bigger rings?

No comments: