Chain Reaction Bracelet (Tutorial)

by Rena Klingenberg. © 2003-Present Rena Klingenberg. All Rights Reserved

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg  - featured on Jewelry Making Journalchain-reaction-bracelet-tutorial-j

Make a chain bracelet that creates a statement!

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg  - featured on Jewelry Making Journal

Seven sassy strands of chain join forces to create this stunning piece.

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg  - featured on Jewelry Making Journal

If you mix chain types and colors as I did, try adding one chain with a pop of color that stands out from the rest.

Supplies:

  • 7 strands of chain, each strand about 130mm (5.1″) long.
    I used chains in a variety of link styles and colors, in narrow to medium widths.
  • 2 large jump rings – one for each end of the bracelet.
    I used heavy gauge 15mm jump rings in antiqued brass color.
  • 14 smaller jump rings – one for each end of each chain strand.
    I used sturdy 5mm jump rings in antiqued brass color.
  • 1 smaller jump ring – for attaching the extender chain to the bracelet.
    I used a sturdy 5mm jump ring in antiqued brass color.
  • Optional: Short piece of chain with medium-size links – to be an extender chain for making the bracelet a good fit.
    I used a 51mm (2″) piece of antiqued pewter chain.
  • Clasp – for closing the bracelet.
    I used a heavy-gauge hook clasp about 22mm long, in antiqued copper.
  • Chain nose pliers.
  • Flat nose pliers.
  • Wire cutter – if you’ll be cutting pieces of chain.
  • Ruler – for measuring your chain strands.

These are the jump rings and clasp I used:

Clasp and jump rings for Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

How to Make a Chain Reaction Bracelet

We’ll start by cutting 7 strands of chain.

Each strand should be about 130mm (5.1″) long.

If you’re using chains with various types of links (like I did), it’s impossible to make each strand the exact same length.

So just do your best to get all the chains as close as possible to the same length.

Now here’s how to make those varying chain lengths work for this bracelet.

Below you can see my cut chains, and how I put the longer chains at the ends of the group, with the shorter chains in the middle of the group.

This arrangement makes the varying chain lengths turn out just right after you’ve attached your chains to the large jump rings:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - chains

Next, we’ll attach a small (5mm) jump ring to each end of each chain.

Use your flat nose and chain nose pliers to twist open the first small jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - attaching a jump ring

Then thread your opened jump ring onto one end of the first chain.

Now use your flat nose and chain nose pliers to twist the jump ring closed again.

The first end of your first chain should look something like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - attaching a jump ring

Attach the second small jump ring to the remaining end of your first chain, so there’s now a small jump ring on each end of the chain:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - attaching jump rings

Continue with attaching one small jump ring on each end of each chain strand.

When you’re finished, your chains should look something like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - attaching jump rings

Now we’ll attach the large (15mm) jump rings to the chains.

Line up your chains with longest chains on the ends, and shortest in the middle.

Use your flat nose and chain nose pliers to twist open one of the large jump rings:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - finishing bracelet ends

. . . and slide the first chain’s small jump ring onto the large jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - finishing bracelet ends

Slide the next chain’s small jump ring onto the large jump ring, right next to the first one:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - finishing bracelet ends

Continue sliding the remaining chains onto the large jump ring, until all seven are attached to the large jump ring.

Then use your chain nose and flat nose pliers to close the large jump ring again.

This first end of the bracelet should look something like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - finishing bracelet ends

Now let’s move to the second end of the bracelet.

Use your chain nose and flat nose pliers to open the remaining large jump ring.

Slide these chain ends’ small jump rings onto the large jump ring.

Here we have four of the chain ends on the large jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - finishing bracelet ends

And here we have all seven of the chain ends on the jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - finishing bracelet ends

But don’t close the big jump ring yet.

We’re going to attach the clasp to this big jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - attach a clasp

Slide the clasp onto the large jump ring, and use your chain nose and flat nose pliers to close the large jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - attach a clasp

Your bracelet is finished now!

It may look something like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

The fastened clasp may look like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - bracelet clasp

And if you want to attach an extender chain to your bracelet, now is the time for it.

Get out a small (5mm) jump ring and your 52mm (2″) piece of chain.

Use your flat nose and chain nose pliers to twist open the small jump ring:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - bracelet extender chain

. . . then thread the extender chain and the big jump ring onto the small jump ring.

Use your flat nose and chain nose pliers to twist the small jump ring closed again:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - bracelet extender chain

When the bracelet is worn with an extender chain, the clasp will work like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg - bracelet extender chain

Your finished Chain Reaction Bracelet may look something like this:

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Chain Reaction Bracelet Tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

FREE - Get 7 Super Jewelry Making Hacks

Get Rena's 7 Super Jewelry Making Hacks, plus the Jewelry Making Journal Newsletter - all for FREE.

We Respect Your Email Privacy

  • Rena, What a great idea for all those bits of chain left over!

  • Valerie says:

    Love, love this bracelet and this style! It’s also a great way to use up random chain leftovers. Thinking you could also create some stylish complimentary earrings too. Thanks, Rena!

  • Valerie, super idea to create complementary earrings!

  • Thanks, Dianne! 🙂

  • Michelle says:

    Great use for chain and probably very popular style.

  • Thanks, Michelle! 🙂

  • Susan says:

    Hello Rena-
    A fun bracelet!
    (I am impressed by your kind use of “your bracelet may look like this” instead of “your bracelet will look like this”.)
    I always enjoy your letters!
    S

  • Susan, thank you for your lovely comment. 🙂

  • Janina says:

    Love this!

  • Kit says:

    I love this, simple(ish) but looks expensive and stylish.Fab!

  • Kathryn Rosa says:

    A lovely unique bracelet I am going to try it

  • LuElla says:

    I can’t wait to get started! I have years of chain ‘remnants’! That’ll be this weekend’s special project! I just love your ideas Rena! How kind of you to share so much with us! Thank you!

  • LuElla, thank you for your lovely message!

  • >