Back To Work Bronze Bracelet - Sort Of  

Monday, February 17, 2014

About a week ago I ordered from Beadsisters in the UK a kit for a bracelet weave called Clockwork. The rings were bronze and bright aluminum. The kit arrived and I made the bracelet within the day. It was very easy to do and fun as well. Here is what it looks like on my wrist:

Once I made it, I figured I would re-create it in sterling silver and bronze (personally I don't like aluminum except for learning a weave, plus I had a request from someone to make it using sterling silver). I cut my rings based on the specifications in the kit and got to work.

To my major surprise nothing matched, the bracelet was a bust. It turns out that since the weave creator didn't mention the type of wire gauge (AWG or SWG), I automatically assumed one of the two and of course, it was not that. Even worse, sterling silver has a different thickness compared to say bronze, so the same gauge (e.g. 18 gauge) is not the same in the two wire materials.

Sadly also mixing sterling with bronze won't work either, because the sizes simply don't match (AWG 18 gauge is not the same with SWG 16 gauge(. So here I am with a bunch of cut jumprings (some sterling silver too, which are not cheap, mind you) and can't make the bracelet again - not unless I use same color rings - which would really detract from the beauty of the wave, since it's really gorgeous in two colors, right?

Having all these jumprings in my stash, I did what some people in the chain maille group called 'lemonade from sour lemons'. I made a new bracelet, which apparently is called Back to Work (I did it from the image of an existing bracelet, not from a tutorial, before I found out what its name is).

So here is my today's lemonade...Back To Work bracelet in bronze. It's really light and fun to wear. I'll make it again, next time in sterling silver.

5 comments: to “ Back To Work Bronze Bracelet - Sort Of

  • Toltec Jewels for Jewel School Friends
    February 17, 2014 at 8:55 PM  

    I like the bracelet you created better than the kit! Gorgeous :)

  • Daisy Kreates
    March 9, 2014 at 1:48 AM  

    Fantastic work, both pieces! Been seeing quite a few Clockworks lately; wonder how you think about it, specially on the long term stability of the largest rings.... it sure was named perfectly.
    p.s. I've always enjoyed following your blog posts, thank you for sharing them!

  • Marika
    March 9, 2014 at 9:48 AM  

    The clockwork holds the rings really well, including the large ones. It's a great weave, except for the fact that if I want to make my own say with silver and bronze, the rings won't match at all due to SWG and AWG size differences. And personally I don't like much aluminum - I try to keep it away from me as much as possible, we have way too much aluminum in our body (heavy metal) as it is, it's sort of a toxic material.

  • Daisy Kreates
    March 16, 2014 at 1:34 AM  

    Thank you for the insight, Marika! Sounds like this is an AR sensitive design, no wonder it is held in securely. As to silver and bronze wires being in different gauge systems, what I had done in the past was to swap out bronze with niobium which can be found in AWG and can be anodized in colors similar to bronze. Granted the color is not solid thru the wire, but its perceived value closer to silver, for whatever it's worth ;-)

  • Marika
    March 16, 2014 at 10:09 AM  

    Thanks Daisy! The only problem with niobium is that I'd have to order it from the internet, pay a lot for it for international shipping and wait about 2 weeks to arrive as well, whereas sterling, copper and bronze I have readily available here as well (I have plenty of wire of each at home). So it is feasible, but still, not overly convenient and cost effective for me. I just feel that I spent that money on the kit to make one single bracelet - bit expensive, although gorgeous, as probably I won't be making it again :)

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