Friendship Bracelet

This friendship bracelet is made from knotted string.  We like to use embroidery thread because it is just heavy enough and colorful.  However, you can use the same method with any kind of cord.  If you enjoy making this bracelet, you can buy a bracelet making kit for under $20, which will show you how to make other styles and even add beads.

You will need:

1.  4 strands of thread, each 30 inches long

2.  1 strand of thead, about 36 inches long

Note:  This bracelet is about 1/4 of an inch wide.  If you want a wider bracelet, use more stands of thread.  You will need to make them longer, however.  Add about three inches of length for every extra string uses.  So if you use 10 strands, they should be 45 inches long.

 A finished friendship bracelet
 Colored string knotted at one end

1.  Knot the strings so they are even at the bottom and the longer cord sticks out the top.  Make a loop with this thread and loop it over a chair back, to hold the bracelet in place while you work.


 Threads are crossed, making a knot

 2.  Pick up the piece of thread on the left side.  (Thread A)  Loop it over the piece of thread next to it. (Thread B)  The cross A behind B and pull the end of A up in the space between A & B.  This will form a knot.  You will make all your knots like this.

Make one more knot with thread A on thread B, then use thread A to make two knots on the next thread C, then thread D, then thread E.  You should have a row of knots.  Drop A.  Pick up B and use B to make a row of knots. 

 A stiped pattern begins to appear  3.  Keep making rows of knots.  The first few rows will be a little bunchy.  Then you should notice the threads forming a diagonal stripe pattern.
 Two knot

 4.  When the bracelet will fit around your wrist, knot the end of the threads together.  Make sure the bracelet will fit over your hand, and then knot the two ends together.

If you want to be able to open and close your bracelet, tie another knot about 1/2 inch above the first.   This will form a loop.

 The finished bracelet  5.  To wear your bracelet, slip the knot on the other end through the loop.  You may need to re-tie the loop so it is small enough to hold the knot in place.  Trim the extra pieces of thread off when your bracelet is finished and fits well.

Friendship bracelets have a fun tradition.  When you recieve one, make a wish.  If you wear the bracelet until in falls off by itself, your wish will come true! If you make one to give away, make sure you tell your friend, so they can enjoy making a wish.

Knotting string to make jewelry and other items has long been part of Native American craft.  The idea of Friendship bracelets may have stemmed from them.  These colorful items became wildly popular in the 1970's and again in the 1990's, though the 1990's version was usually made from hemp. 


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