Egyptian Chain Bracelet

Saturday I attended a class to make an Egyptian chain bracelet. It’s called an Egyptian chain not because it’s from Egypt, but because it is made from closed or “Egyptian” spirals. I wasn’t that attracted to the design, but the class is a prerequisite for classes that interest me more.

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We were told to bring 16 gauge copper wire, or 16 gauge German silver plated copper wire to use. I’m not sure if the German silver wire was harder than the copper wire (the silver probably was half-hard as opposed to dead soft copper), or if I just have weaker hands than everyone else in the class. (I had the smallest hands in the class.) The wire was so hard that it took the paint off my cutters.

I don’t plan on making another one of these any time soon, and I’m also not going to use 16 gauge wire unless I really have to. It was a pain, literally, to make the coils. It felt as though my pliers didn’t have a good grip on the wire. My hand started hurting early on (before the other women started complaining, but I didn’t complain out loud), and I thought I might even have to quit part way though, since I needed to make ten links. I was able to make nine links, even though I only ended up needing six. As with the previous class, I didn’t need as many links to complete my bracelet, since I have a small wrist. Knowing that, the next time I’m in a bracelet making class and we’re told to cut ten 9-inch pieces of wire, I’ll save myself some work and wire by not cutting as many.

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Adding the beads was challenging, since we had to be careful to not break the bead, which did happen a few times. Since I didn’t catch the part about using the nylon jaw pliers to hold onto the bead when coiling, I avoided touching the beads with my pliers and didn’t break any. However, my coils with the beads were quite lopsided, and the wire near the center of the coils got chewed up to the point that the copper started showing.

Anyway, the project is done, I learned some things, and I can advance to the next class. Four hours later, my hands and wrists began to feel sore. They still hurt now.

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