I came across this tutorial from ECAB that demonstrates how to make a braided bead necklace and I knew instantly that was going to be my next project.
I have modified the instructions a bit to make a braided bead bracelet. I will show you pictures from my bracelet making process and give brief instructions. Please click the link above to go on over to ECAB for the full tutorial. It is wonderful.
These are my supplies. The string pictured is Beadalon #6 silk bead cord. Save yourself some heartache and get the thicker cord from the start. I fought a few battles with the 0.20mm thread I started out with and was much happier when I made the switch to the Beadalon thread.
First I strung about 4″ of beads on to my thread. You need 6 strands. I chose 4″ because I wanted the braided beads to be the majority of the bracelet. I also have a freakishly tiny wrist. Make the strands as long as you like. Place the bead tips at each end of the strand. Once the bead tips are in place, tie a knot in the bead tip and hold it with some Beadalon glue. I found tying the knots to be frustrating at first because you must get them as close as possible to the end of the strand. Once I found this site all of my struggles seemed like a distant memory. The project goes quite quickly from here.
Next I chose to go ahead and cut 2 pieces of chain a little longer than I though I would actually need and attached a jumpring. Once I attached the bead strands to one of the pictured jump rings it was easier to braid because you are able to hold on to the chain while braiding.
Make sure all your bead tips are closed around the knot. Do this with your jewelry or round pliers. Attach them to the jump ring by forming a loop around the jump ring with the claw-like end of the bead tip. Use your pliers for this as well.
A closer look.
Next, braid the beads. This is just a standard braid.
Secure the bead tips at the end of the braid to the other jumpring and chain from earlier. Be sure to do this according to the order at the end of the braid so that it does not come undone.
Cut the chain to size then attach a clasp and you are all done! I used a screw clasp because I already had one handy, but I’m sure most any would work. I am always happy to answer any questions!
Now go find a new outfit to go with your awesome bracelet.
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