Holiday Tree Instructions

Holiday Chain Maille Tree Earring is based on the open round chainmail pattern. Create the trunk using the open round pattern, then attach the branches from top to bottom.The project uses the following sizes of jump rings: 20ga Gauge Jump Rings in 2.5, 3.0, 3.25, 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, 5.5, 6.0, 6.5 and 7.0mm ID


STEP 1: The Starter

The core of the tree is based on the Open Round Chain Maille technique. We are borrowing the beginning of that tutorial for this project.

The easiest way to assemble this chain is to make a starter. You need a dowel (3/16" diameter) a piece of masking tape and (3) 20ga 3.25mm ID Jump Rings (Dark color metal).

Close the three jump rings.

Images shown using larger rings for better clarity.

  Step 1 Open Round Chain Maillee

STEP 2: Stick 'Em

Press the 3 closed jump rings into the sticky side of the masking tape. Make sure at least half of the jump ring is visible above the tape.

  Step 2 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 3: The Roll

Attach the dowel to the edge of the tape. Make the end of the dowel equal with the tape, and roll the dowel so that the tape and jump rings are packed inside.

  Step 3 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 4: Looks Like This...

Press the tape firmly against the dowel and jump rings to secure them. Your finished starter should allow you to add jump rings to the starter jump rings.

  Step 4 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 5: The Triangle

The jump rings on the starter should form a triangle. You will be adding new jump rings, one each, the the corners of the triangle where the jump rings meet.

  Step 5 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 6: Starter Complete

Optional: Hang the starter from your work lamp or third hand to give you access to the chain.

  Step 6 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 7: Pair #1 - first new ring

Locate the point where two rings on the starter are touching. Open a jump ring and attach it to that pair.

  Step 7 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 8: Pair #2 - second new ring

Rotate the work to the next point where two rings from the starter touch. Add a new jump ring.

  Step 8 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 9: Pair #3 - last new ring

Turn your work and find the point where the rings from the starter touch and add a new jump ring.

Row Complete!

  Step 9 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 10: Add a new row - new ring #1

You are going to repeat the steps 7, 8 & 9. But lets continue following the chain to reinforce what it should look like

  Step 10 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 11: Then ring #2, then ring #3

Find the point the the rings touch and add a new ring. Each row requires 3 new rings.

Note: The first several rows can be tricky. Make sure that your new ring only connect two rings and does not grab the previous row.

  Step 11 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 12: Continue the Chain

As you chain progresses in length, it will stabilize and you will no longer need the dowel. I find it easier to keep track of the chain by making small piles of three rings.

  Step 12 Open Round Chain Maille

STEP 13: Make approx 3" of Chain

Using 20ga 3.25mm ID jump rings, make a chain approximately 3 inches long ( 84 jump rings).

Note: We are using two different color rings in the instructions to make it easier to follow. You may use one or as many metals as you like.

  Step 13 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 14: Divide the Chain

Divide the chain into equal halves. On for each earring.

Note: Starting the chain can be difficult. It is easier to make a continuous chain and divide it than to start two chains.

  Step 14 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 15: Add the Hanger

Add a new row like you did in Steps #7, #8 and #9, but use a 20ga 2.5mm ID (light color) jump rings. You only need to add (2) rings the 3rd ring will not be used.
  Step 15 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 16: Add the Hanger part 2

Use a 20ga 7.0mm ID jump ring and attach it to the two 20ga 2.5mm ID rings that you just added. Now you have a hanger to attach to your ear-wire.

  Step 16 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 17: Locate Where the Branches Go

The core of your tree has three sides. Located the spot where two rings touch. You will be adding a new ring to that location (total three per row) Start at the top, just underneath the hanger.
  Step 17 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 18: Top Row of Branches

Adding from the top down, smallest to largest ring, add a 20ga 3.0mm ID jump ring to each connection point on the top row. Total of (3) rings.

  Step 18 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 19: Identify the Next Row

Identify the next row. Look for the point where two rings touch.
  Step 19 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 20: Add Row #2

As you add each row the ring diameter (ID) will increase. For Row #2 add (3) 20ga 3.5mm ID Jump Rings

  Step 20 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 21: Continue Adding Rows

For each row, use the next size larger jump ring.
  Step 21 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 22: Double Up on the Last Row

When you get to row 9, (uses 20ga 7.0mm ID rings). insert an additional set of rings on the same row. It will be a tight fit but they will fit.

This gives the tree some flair at the bottom.

  Step 22 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 23: Ring around the Trunk (option)

It you want a traditional tree shape, add a 20ga 5.0mm ID jump ring on the trunk of the tree. Slide it up under the branches of the last row and crimp it in place with your pliers. This will make the bottom rows stick out more.
  Step 23 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 24: Trim the Trunk

Adjust the length of the trunk to your liking by adding or subtracting rings.

  Step 24 Holiday Tree Earring

STEP 25: [option]Add Earwires

To make your trees into earrings just add your favorite earwires.
  Holiday Tree Step 25

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