Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Chainmail jewellery

Y'know those funky, sparkly chainmail headdresses you see at Ren Faires and maybe the occasional SCA event?

I sorta like them.

But they're not period.

At all.

I'm not exactly sure when people first got the idea to make chainmail jewellery, but I think the 1980s had something to do with it.  Certainly no one in the Middle Ages or Renaissance tried it... or if they did, they somehow failed to allude to it in any text or artwork anywhere, ever.  

Middle-Eastern chainmail jewellery didn't exist either.

Wear it to the goth club.  Wear it to Fairycon.  Wear it to the Conan the Barbarian Appreciation Society.  But please, really, don't wear it when you're reenacting.


  1. Respected friend:
    Back in the '80s, I was told by an apprentice Hollywood costumer that the infamous "chain mail veil" was invented for a scene in a C- or D- SciFi movie. Unfortunately, it "caught on".
    H. Horne-Jaruk

  2. If I remember correctly, and there is no guarantee of that, it first appeared in the movie "Excaliber" from 1981.

  3. True, but it reminds me of the Yemeni metal wirework done on a frame like the Knifty Knitter - there is a photo in the book "Textile Techniques in Metal" by Arline M. Fisch.

    Let's try a linkie: