Introduction: Mail Man Charm (chain Maille)

Now that I have lots of cheap, saw cut jump rings (see, it's time for some fun and quick chainmail projects.  If you've never done any chain mail before, you might want to check out some basics, such as how to open and close a jumpring... lots of 'ibles on this site, this one looks very comprehensive: (

You will need:

* two small jewelry pliers - chain, round or needle nosed
* wire rings in at least three sizes (I used 17 gauge aluminum wire for electric horse fencing - 1/4 inch inner diameter (i.d.), 3/16 inch i.d. and 1/8 inch i.d.)  Rings for one 'mail man' + 5 large, 20 medium and 10 small)
* key ring, lanyard hook etc. or scrap of wire to hold your "maille man"

Step 1: Make the Head and Torso

1.  Base chain: close 4 large rings (1/4" i.d.) and connect them with two medium rings (3/16" i.d.) (Reminder: open and close jumprings by twisting the ring ends up and down - do not spread the ends apart).
2.  Lay the base chain flat and fold two large rings backwards, on top of the first two large rings.
3.  Grab the the two 'inside' large rings and slide a twist-tie or piece of scrap wire through the centers.
4.  Pull the two 'outside' large rings down, which will tilt the two medium rings to the side and upwards.  The two medium rings now look like they go through an eye-shaped hole between the two pairs of large rings.
5.  Insert the 5th large ring in between the middle two large rings, forming another eye-shaped hole (see the red lines drawn in the 7th picture).
6.  Insert a medium ring through the lower eye-shaped hole, and out towards the side of torso.
7.  Close the medium ring.
8.  Insert another medium ring into the eye-shaped hole and out towards the opposite side of the torso.

Step 2: Add the Arms

1.  Close two small rings (1/8" i.d.), attach together with a 3rd small ring.  This is the first arm.
2.  Insert one small open ring into two medium rings on the side of the head/torso (= shoulder joint) and connect the same small ring to the single ring end of the arm.  Close small ring.
3.  Insert another small ring into the shoulder joint and the attached end of the arm.  Close ring.  The first arm is a sequence of two small rings attached to the shoulder joint (= upper arm), a single ring (= the elbow) and two more rings for the forearm.
4.  Repeat for second arm.

Step 3: Make and Attach the Legs

1.  Make the first leg by making a double linked chain:  close 4 medium rings, attache the 4 rings with one medium ring and add a second medium ring right next to the center single ring.
2.  Attach leg to the lower part of the torso (this is the single large ring right below the shoulders/arms).
3.  Repeat to make and attach the second leg.

Step 4: Use or Display Your "mail Man"

1.  Add a jump ring to the head of the 'mail man' - use a different metal/color to contrast with the body ot the mail man.
2.  Attach jump ring to a key chain, lanyard hook, cord etc.
3.  Give away or wear your 'mail man'.

You can make a 'clothed' mail man by using different colored metal rings:  one color for head and hands (copper or pink), another color for the 'shirt' (shoulders and upper arms) and a third color for the legs/pants. 
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