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What is maile?
Maile, also known as chain mail, or chain maille, is a flexible material composed of interlocking metal rings. It was historically used to make body armor, but is commonly seen today in jewelry, sculpture, and fashion as well. It has nothing to do with annoying letters about sick children that you have to forward to 20 people to keep your hair from falling out.

Do you make all this yourself?
Yes. Everything is hand-crafted, assembled one ring at a time, by yours truly. I have no apprentices, minions or elves that weave maile all night long for me.

What materials do you use for your jewelry?
I primarily use stainless steel and anodized aluminum, which do not rust or tarnish. Upon request, I can also work in copper, brass, aluminum, niobium, bronze, pretty much anything that comes in wire form that is strong enough to hold its shape.

What is the proper way to clean my maile?
Your chain maile does not require regular cleaning, but should your sticky-fingered nephew grab your necklace and coat it with jelly, simply wipe it down with a moistened sponge or alcohol wipe, and dry with a towel. If no towels are available, an hour in a nice, warm sunbeam should do. (Don't forget to flip.) You can also use mild dish soap if necessary.

I have metallic allergies. Can I wear your jewelry?
The most common occurrence of 'contact dermatitis' is a reaction to nickel. There is virtually no nickel in the steel I use, and after 16 years, I have yet to hear of anyone who had a reaction to wearing it. That being said, there are other, rarer conditions that may exhibit a sensitivity to metal. If you feel you may be affected, contact me and I will send you a test piece. You may also want to consult your dermatologist, and let them know that the metal I use is 304-grade stainless steel, meets ASTM, A555 & A580 standards, and is made in the USA.

What kind of beads do you use?
I use a wide variety of beads. Druk glass, Swarovski Crystals, high-grade acrylics, semi-precious stones, wood, bone, coral, metal, even chemically-reactive plastic.

I like your designs, but I don't see exactly what I'm looking for. Can you make something in a different color scheme?
Of course. Everything is handmade, and as a result, completely customizeable for size, color and style. If you don't see exactly what you want, e-mail me with details on what you like and I'll let you know what the options are. I can also craft new items from scratch. Whatever you can dream up, sketch on a napkin, or even from a photograph.

What if my piece was broken or damaged?
It is a rare occurrence but life happens. If your piece has been damaged, most repairs are free. All that I ask is that you pay for shipping, should shipping need to happen. That's it. If you can bring it by a show in person, even better.

How long have you been making chain maile?
I got started in 2002 and went professional in 2003. Thanks, now I feel old.

Do you make armor?
I actually started out making armor, but found it to be incredibly labor intensive compared to jewelry. Necklaces and bracelets allow a greater creative outlet for me. On occasion, I do make club wear or bikinis as a special request. But there are many chain mailers who specialize in armor, and I can certainly recommend some talented artists who focus on that aspect of weaving.

Is chain maile just for jewelry and armor?
The Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA), renaissance re-enactors, as well as Hollywood use actual armor for both costumes and live combat. But there are many modern-day applications for maile. Butchers and chefs wear gloves made of micro-chain maile. Shark divers wear chain maile for protection from attacks. An extraordinarily large version of European 4-in-1 weave is used to protect highways from rockfalls from overhanging cliffs.

Is chain maile bullet-proof?
The short answer is no. The elaborate, more in-depth answer is no! In every recorded instance of maile versus firearms, the wearer winds up in significantly worse shape than they would have been in with no armor at all. Why? I could talk about the science of muzzle velocity and the tensile strength of steel alloys, but despite it's reputation, chain maile is not invulnerable even to blades or crossbow bolts. Bullets have far more power and speed than either of those. The gruesome reality is that links get torn open and dragged through the wound behind the bullet. Then you die of sepsis, or exsanguination. Which is no fun. Please don't try it at home, or anywhere else.

What if my question wasn't answered in the FAQs?
Ask! I love questions, especially when I have answers that match. E-maile me, post on my Facebook page or bug me at a show. I could probably use the break.