Byzantine Mobius and Cost Comparisons

8 08 2012

I’m working on a new piece after a short hiatus–and it’s going to be a beauty. Here are two things you need to know about this new chainmaille bracelet.

First: Sterling Silver

I have enough sterling silver wire left over from previous pieces to make a bracelet. I prefer sterling silver to silver plate, even though it significantly increases the cost of the piece. Sterling silver never wears away to reveal a base metal underneath, which is the problem with silver plate.

On another note, I’m toying with switching from silver-plated wire to silver-filled wire as my less-costly option to buyers. Silver-filled wire is much more expensive than silver plate, but, like sterling silver, it retains its attractiveness for a long, long time, even under heavy wear. Overall, it will still give buyers a less expensive option than sterling silver.

For a cost comparison (20 gauge wire):

  • Silver-plated wire: about $11 per 100 feet
  • Silver-filled wire: about $100 per 100 feet (about 9x as much as silver-plated wire)
  • Sterling silver (half hard): currently around $170 per 100 feet (about 15x as much as silver-plated wire)

In practical terms, I sell an all-byzantine bracelet for about $35 in silver-plated wire and for about $120 in sterling silver. If I use silver-filled wire, the buyer’s cost may be around $65-$70 (this will likely change once I do the math).

Second: Beautiful design.

I’m combining the byzantine design with mobius flowers. The basic chain is byzantine, but between each byzantine chainmaille unit, I’m adding a mobius flower. As much as I like the simplicity of an all-byzantine chain, I really like the way the mobius flowers are breaking the pattern.

Thus, the pattern is this:

byzantine – linking rings – mobius – linking rings – byzantine

I hope to finish the bracelet tonight (maybe tomorrow night), and I’ll create a post with pictures once it’s ready. Stay tuned!

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