This is the original Viking weave bracelet I made - single knit, which is what I'm going to describe, and quite a fine chain. This was a try out piece made in fine copper tone wire.
I moved on to working with thicker wire for this set. The thicker wire is harder to work, but looks more substantial. When you do the 'magic' bit on wire like this, it is really incredible!
OK, here we go. You will need something round to work on, I'm using a chopstick, but the handle of a wooden spoon, or even a long thick pencil would do. Or you can buy a special tool called a Laizee Daizee if you are feeling flush. You'll also need wire. The smaller the gauge that you start with, the easier it is to work. I'm using 26 gauge (0.4m) wire for this demo. You will also need a drawplate - more on that later.
length of finished chain required (inches)
_________________________ = x (number of inches of knit needed)
so if you want an 18 inch chain for a necklace
___ = 12.8 inches
You will need to make about 12 or 13 inches. It's a rough calculation that will vary depending on how much drawplate work you do. If you make too little, you might get away with more use of the drawplate, but you will end up with a finer diameter of chain. If you make too much, you can simply snip the chain. The loop formation means you can do this without it unravelling. Again, the Viking knit takes quite a time, but is versatile.
So, you're nearly there and at the fun bit. Get your drawplate ready. You are going to convert your messy wire into something interesting...
I leave the flower on the top of the weave 'sausage' as it's a useful cone shape to push through the drawplate.
I went to the last hole on the drawplate to make this a very fine chain. Here's another using slightly thicker wire (24 gauge, 0.5mm) where I stopped drawing on a larger diameter hole, and used a double knit.
How do you do a double knit? You can form your loop differently (into the row above the last one) - I found that difficult - or, as I did, simply use a double strand of wire each time. If you fold a long piece of wire in two, when you come to join in the next piece, you will have a bend in the wire instead of two loose ends, which is an advantage too as it's tidier to hide.
It looks a bit like chainmaille, doesn't it, or a neat cable knit?
Phew, hope that's clear! It's one of those things that sound complicated when you are describing it, but once you start doing it, you realise it's quite straightforward. If you really want to impress your friends, don't forget to tell them you are doing trichinopoly, a skill which probably dates back to the 9th century AD. That may or may not be a conversation-stopper!
Here's the link to what other crafty people have been doing this week.