I know it's madness for some, but for me, it's pure Zen.
Theres nothing I like more than to be completely absorbed in solving design challenges of my own invention. I gravitated towards chainmaille after a lifetime of sewing and knitting as pastimes and jewelry making in my professional life.
Some time ago, I became bored with traditional jewelry. Designing and making gem centered, fine jewelry had completely lost it's appeal to me. No matter how fine the gem or how complex the setting, I felt boxed in with conventional construction and casting techniques. I needed a massive change.
At about the same time, I became fascinated with traditional chainmaille. The long dormant technique challenged all my skills as a designer and jeweler because by it's very nature, it must be flexible to work. This aspect has caused me to rethink structures completely.
Now my new focus is drape, movement and texture. I only use gems as accents and only if they're relevant to the overall design. Creating this type of fine jewelry is infinitely more satisfying and rewarding and I think it yields infinitely more interesting jewelry.