See that orange and black wavy friendship bracelet down in my picture of supplies? I bought it at a festival over a year ago and have been obsessing over how to make it ever since. Thank goodness for Chinese knotting cord and my thread burner because I finally figured out how to make it. And let me tell you, it is SO EASY.
You will need:
- 3 colors of Chinese knotting cord, about 60 inches of each color
- About 25 inches of rattail or other round cording
- A box lid
- A thread burner or a lighter
- Some scrap rattail or yard
First, fold your scrap rattail and the rattail you are using in half and thread them through each other. Wrap them around your box lid like you did in the DIY Fishtail Bracelet tutorial but don’t tie a knot a the top of the bracelet this time.
Fold the three strands of Chinese knotting cord in half and put the loop under the rattail and pull it through. Arrange the strands in order from darker to lighter from outer to inner. Now, the original bracelet used four strands of slightly lighter weight knotting cord folded in half. You can use as many as you would like, but with the heavier cord I thought it looked better with three.
Take the first blue strand and fold it over the first strand of rattail like the number 4. Then pull it through the loop, pull the end tight and push the knot up the cord. Make a second knot and move on to the second strand of rattail and repeat the process.
Keep going with the rest of the strands, but be sure not to pull the first knot too tight because you need to leave enough slack for the loop.
Next, do the same going from right to left, instead of making 4, do the mirror image of it. You’re basically doing an exact mirror image of everything you just did: two knots with each strand of knotting cord over each strand of rattail.
Except after the first strand, you should be able to take the bracelet off of the box lid. I just tied it to my coffee table leg but you could do the back of a chair or whatever you like. But you want the rattail strands to be loose so that they can start to wave as you make the bracelet.
Keep going back and forth, left to right, right to left with all of the strands until you get the bracelet to the desired length. Then you can take it off of your coffee table and get out your thread burner. Start with the lightest color of knotting cord and press the tip of the thread burner against the knot to seal it up. Then pull the thread through the loop of the thread burner and use it to cut the cord. Repeat on the rest of the cords.
Now, if you don’t have a thread burner, or if yours breaks like mine did halfway through my second bracelet, I figured out another way to make it work with a lighter. I don’t have pictures but hopefully I can explain it well enough. Hold the bracelet with one hand and with the rattail strands pulled to the side, then with the other hand snip off the ends and grab your lighter, don’t touch the flame to the knotting cord but hold it close enough to seal the knots. Trim the ends of the rattail but leave a couple of inches so that can put your bracelet on. Voila!
To put it on, slide the ends of through the loop and tie a knot.