The tutorial given here should fit up
to a 'C' cup or a daring 'D' cup.
For larger than that I suggest a piece made from large scales
instead of small. All materials used
in this sample were obtained from 'The Ring Lord' chainmail/scalemail
construction supplies. They are located at:
Estimated materials for use:
600 small scales (more if you will want to extend the piece lower than
just below the breasts)
1200 18 gauge 3/16 inner diameter links. I recommend stainless steel
even is using aluminum scales.
Sufficient curb chain, leather thong, cloth or links to make the neck
and back chains.
If using anodized aluminum scales be sure to order more than you need
as the anodization is spotty in places.
1. Make two triangles of scales, increasing one scale per row. Start at
one scale wide and work up to 14 scales wide
Picture of the first 8 rows of links in the triangle, from both back
Full Triangle extended to 14 links, shown both front and back:
2. Make one large rectangle (tapered at top) of scales:
The first row is 29 scales, second 30, third 31, fourth 32, fifth 33,
At the 7th row you go back down to 33 then continue alternating 34 and
33 scales per row down to the 12th row.
On the 12th row only use 32 instead of 34 scales to prevent the loose
scales from dangling off the edges of the top.
If you intend to make it longer than the sample on this page
continue to alternate 33 and 34, ignoring the taper to 32 until your
last row (which would normally be 34).
Picture of the main body of the top (back side):
You then join the triangles to the tapered rectangle. Aligning them in
the middle. With the first row in the rectangle being 29 scales and the
triangles being 14 each, you center the very center scale in the top
row of the rectangle between the edges of the triangles. You'll want to
connect the neck chain to the two top scales of the triangles and the
back chain to the first row in the rectangle that is 34 scales wide. I
affix lanyard clasps (mid chain) to both chains to provide for easy
fitting. This is my basic pattern I work small scale tops out of. I
tend to vary it a little from piece to piece to keep them non-identical
when possible. So your results will be similar to this but not exactly
the same. One note, you'll need to figure out how to trap the edge
scales from flopping around. The straight edges are easy, follow the
pic in the scale instructions TRL has in their scale section(on their
commercial site). The angled sections need it also and you need to
extrapolate the method for that from the pictures above.