Chainmail Patterns.
Chainmail, Armour, Swords, Humor, Costumes, Masks, The SCA Everything you ever wanted to know about chainmail


Before you Begin, please read this section thoroughly. The tools and techniques involved with making mail are discussed in detail. Along with a detailed explanation of the symbology used in the following fully-illustrated patterns.

The following sections are divided into what I refer to as "pattern families": European, Japanese, Persian and Miscellaneous. The individual patterns are named and sorted by the number of times a single link in the pattern passes through another link and by whether the pattern forms a "Chain" or a "Mail".

"Mail" Wee Shirts Designate Mail Patterns referring to patterns that form sheets and can be used in ways similar to fabric.

"Chain" Wee Chains Designate Chain Patterns referring to patterns for a series of links that create a chain and are often the base for more complex "Mail" patterns.

I also have 3 sub designations:

"Attachments" The Letter A Designates Mail Attachments referring to methods for attaching sections of Mail.

"Expert" The Letter X Designates Mail Expert Pattern Alterations referring to expert methods for altering base Mail patterns, such as expansions and reductions.

"Joining" The Letter J Designates Methods for Joining Chain Ends referring to methods for joining the ends of Chains to form continuous Chain loops.

European Patterns - The European family of chainmail patterns is probably the most well known. The alternating rows and columns of European mail are commonly thought to have been invented by the Celts around 400 bce. Soon after, the Roman Empire came in contact with the Celts and their chainmail was adopted as backline armour (Lorica Hamata). Chainmail from this family has been in continous use since, most popular as the armour of dark age knights, it is still used today in butcher gloves and shark suits. Because of its widespread use this family is sometimes know as "International".

Japanese Patterns - The Japanese family of chainmail patterns are not quite as well known as the European. The patterns of this family tend to be very geometrical, the final patterns often forming a repeating grid. There are some samples of Italian chaimail that appear to follow Japanese patterns. The oldest samples of Chainmail, dated to Etruscan times (3000 bce), also would appear to follow the common characteristics of the Japanese family.

Persian Patterns - The Persian family of chainmail is almost unknown. I've never been able to pin down actual historical sources for any of these intricate patterns. I call them "Persian" simply because it is the only name I know for them, there is currently no evidence to link them to this part of the world.

Miscellaneous Patterns - This family includes chain patterns that don't share common characteristics with any of the above families. Instructions for creating the spiral chain that decorates my website are included in this section.

Art of Chainmail Masters Kit - The Original Book plus 11 Tutorials!

Art of Chainmail Masters Kit - The Original Book plus 11 Tutorials!


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