So hi, I’m John I’ve been doing this for near over 7 years now starting in my sophomore year of High School. Now I’ve liked chain mail and I first started this because simply enough – I couldn’t get rings, so I decided to engineer some. Now I’ve seen some people with a few items that classify as TabMail, and I don’t claim to be the first. However my weaves and patterns have been created by months of testing, improving on old weaves and generally trying to see what the limit of these tiny cans really are. What I have done that I’ve yet to see is make chain and chainmail – entirely out of tabs. I’ve also yet to see anyone who has made the amount of variant patterns that I have. I do like regular chainmail and there’s many items of mine covered in it, but I really like TabMail because it’s so constricting. I am a programmer/game dev. but that idea of seeing what I can and testing the limits of a system carries over, and makes this a lot of fun.
About the tabs though – Every tab I have has either been personally collected by either myself, family, friends, or random people who see the armor. The armor contains a lot of tabs and I’ll have a count of the current state here in a few days, but it’s in the 10’s of thousands and making a significant piece takes months. The colored tabs aren’t painted although I may do that in the future. They actually come from either Energy Drinks (Monster mostly), with the blue from a limited special of Coors Lite (which grr won’t run again – I want more blue). I typically use other parts of the can in my armor pieces. My weapons are crafted with a wood base, but are clad in cut cans, and with a handle made of bottle tops (even the pommel is a bottle). I also uniquely have made Plate Mail using large cut cans bundled (about 10 thick) and riveted together.
I’m currently in redesign of the armor (more on this in History), but I really have no intention of stopping, once I get fully body chain I’ll add full plate mail, more weapons, bags, hell I even have ideas on scale mail made from the chad you pop with the poptop. I’ve sold my things before, but I don’t have (nor plan on) setting up a shop. Feel free to contact me with a commission though, but if you like simply pop over to the Weaves page and start working on your own.