Have You Checked Out Stainless Steel Jewelry Yet?

If you haven’t,  you should – it’s FABULOUS!

My relationship with stainless steel jewelry is relatively new; I most often work with  anodized aluminum,  copper, brass and occasionally bronze.  In the past I’ve only  purchased light-weight  stainless steel chains to replace  Sterling silver chains that had broken.  While I was pleasantly surprised to see how well the stainless steel  chains coordinated with the Sterling silver pendants I used them with, I still didn’t fully appreciate stainless steel’s mojo. However,  my feelings  changed a couple of  years ago  when I first started making  chainmaille  jewelry.  I then  fell DEEPLY in love with stainless steel  jump rings!

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Above & Below:  Stainless Steel Chainmaille  Bracelet,  Persian 6:1 Weave,  by Happy Eyeballz Designs

 

 

What I love most about stainless steel jewelry is how sturdy, durable and flexible  it is,  but  not  necessarily “industrial” looking.  It has  a  neutral silvery-grey color  (in a shiny or matte finish),  and is an inexpensive alternative to precious metals like Sterling silver, platinum, and white gold.  In its “natural” state, stainless steel is un-plated which is helpful to people with allergies or sensitivities to base metals like copper or brass. It’s also available with copper, silver, gold and other metal plating if that’s the look you want.

Now, in the interest of full disclosure, I must inform you that  working with stainless steel DOES have 1 drawback. Specifically, despite its flexibility, IT’S STILL HARD AS HELL.  [Think memory wire.] So, before  you start a project, be sure that you have the proper tools on hand.  For example, memory wire cutters  MUST be used to cut stainless steel  wire  because if you use any other type of cutter it will be RUINED. Crying face Also, when using stainless steel (& bronze) jump rings it’s helpful to use parallel action pliers, especially when the gauge (wire) is 16 or greater.

If you’d like to learn more about the “FABULOUSITY”  [I hereby declare this to be a REAL word henceforth!]  of stainless steel jewelry, click on the following link which will take you to one of my favorite resources, Fire Mountain Gems.  If you decide to conduct some hands-on stainless steel jewelry experimentation, please drop us a line to tell us how  your [jewelry] world was rocked (or wrecked).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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