Something new, Something... Scaly...
Scalemaille. It's a word that a lot of people have never heard before. For the first few years of making Chainmail, I hadn't either.
At the time of this post, Scalemaille is fairly new to the Zedek Creations website, but I have been making it for quite a while longer. I discovered Scalemaille (by accident once again) around a year after first starting to make Chainmail. I tried making something as an experiment, to see if I enjoyed the process. I didn't. At. All. Whereas Chainmail came naturally to me, Scalemaille frustrated me and I couldn't seem to make any sense of it in my head. Things never sat properly, or didn't look the way I wanted them to, or an idea I had just wouldn't translate well into the process of Scalemaille. So very quickly, it became somewhat of an abandoned project, something I kept telling myself I would go back to with no real intention of doing so.
After continuing with Chainmail, and as my ideas for new designs grew, I eventually decided to give Scalemaille another go, this time I would make sure to focus and really try to see where I was going wrong and fix it. I made a few more pieces and considered them far more successful than my first attempt. The first designs were mostly pendants and attempts at costumes or pieces that would work for cosplay, but among them were some earring designs.
I placed the first design of the Scalemaille earrings into a shop alongside some Chainmail and they immediately gained quite a lot of attention. A commission for a very large pair of earrings soon followed and this inspired me to begin making more Scalemaille designs.
A little about the process
First the scales are polished, then the pattern is assembled and finally, the patterns are stabilised. Stabilising the patterns is extremely important, and equally time consuming and a bit boring to be honest. But most Scalemaille patterns require stabilisation to hold their shape, otherwise scales overlap in the wrong places and become a mess. Due to this, new designs are often a process of trial and error, a new pattern or shape is easy to make, but to get it to hold its shape without constant readjustment is quite tricky. Due to the nature of Scalemaille, all patterns move around freely and occasionally change shape anyway, but thanks to the stabilising work, this can be easily adjusted. All of my scales are anodised aluminium and the earrings have sterling silver hooks.
Vibrant new colours and designs will be added to the website regularly (a few new ones are on the way soon!) and I am excited to continue working on this affordable style of jewellery alongside my Chainmail!
I hope you love these Scalemaille designs as much as I do!
By Lilith Morrigan Hicks