Thursday, June 30, 2011

Chainmail Is A Nerd's Best Friend

Chainmail Dice Bag by Tangled Metal on Etsy
It is true, I am a nerd. I am geeky. I love Sci-Fi and Fantasy. That is probably the why I started making chainmail in the first place. Only someone who has played Dungeons and Dragons could create the chainmail dice bag in the photo above. Sometimes the nerd in me takes over and there is very little I can do to stop it.

Chainmail Hacky Sack by Tangled Metal on ArtFire
It would seem that chainmail dice bags were not enough for me. I had to go and create a chainmail hacky sack. Now I will not take credit for being the first one to make one. I will however say that before I made my first one I had never seen anyone else make one. I had seen some juggling balls but they were quite a bit larger. About a year after I started selling these at Renaissance Fairs and shops, I started seeing them all the time.

Chainmail Coif With Mantle by Tangled Metal on Etsy
The above picture shows why I really got into making chainmail in the first place. I wanted to make armor for myself. I read The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy and the Hobbit when I was 12 or 13 years old. I wanted to be like the warriors in the books. I wanted to wear armor and wield a sword. I wanted to be like them. It is funny that I ended up the guy who makes the armor and not the guy who wears it.

Something Blue Chainmail Necklace by Tangled Metal on Etsy
As time went on I started making chainmail jewelry. There were many other chainmaillers out there making jewelry but I wanted to set myself apart from them. I started making things that I thought people would like to wear outside of just the Renaissance Fair. I wanted to create items that were everyday wear.

When I was on the Renaissance Fair circuit I would only have about six months with each new design before I started seeing them done by others. This gave me the opportunity to create new designs on a regular basis. I had to stay ahead of the game. And I did for many years.

I retired from the life of being on the road after the events of 9/11. Traveling just did not seem safe to many people and it was evident by the decline of patrons at the Renaissance Fairs. Though I sometimes miss being on the road I am happy to be in one location where I do not have to wear a costume or fake an accent. Being in one place has also made it much easier to create new items and designs.

Steampunk Pendant "Time Lord" by Tangled Metal on Etsy
As seen with this picture I have branched out from Medieval Times to the Victorian and Edwardian era. I guess the nerd in me will never die. Steampunk is my newest love. I take that back. I have always loved Steampunk but it hasn't always had a name. I do enjoy creating the pendants and brooches.

My father is going to retire from being a school teacher next year. He is going to teach me silver smithing. So, I guess I better get to selling some jewelry and armor so that I can afford to buy some silver. I am looking forward to learning a new trade that will help me with my current one.

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