I have been making jewelry for about 15 years but I rarely share any jewelry DIY’s because special tools are needed and jewelry making can be complicated (and tedious). However, I recently made a bunch of bracelets for a charity event using a super easy (no tool) knot technique using narrow leather cords that anyone can do. If you can tie a knot, you can do this and it only takes a few minutes. Trust me!!
By the way, this is such an easy project that it would be a perfect craft project for a girl’s night out party or use this project for handmade gifts for the holidays. It’s also easy enough for the kids to make as well!
Ok, so I’m going to walk you through each step in great detail and with a lot of images so you’ll know exactly what supplies you need and can see just how easy this is. Once you look through all of the images, you’ll see just how easy this is!
Let’s jump right in:
Narrow leather cords (package should say 1mm) and they come in a large color selection too:
Package of Lobster Clasps (the smaller, the better):
An assortment of beads (most beads will fit a 1mm leather cord-except tiny seed beads) I also try and buy my beads when they are 50% off at Hobby Lobby. Every other week, their beads are 50% off. Beads and supplies can add up quick!
Large gold/silver beads/balls (It’s very important that you pick up the largest of the gold/silver bead balls because this is how you’ll hid the ends of your cord. In this image below, I’m showing you the two sizes that the beads come in so you’ll know to look for the largest):
Steps for Making Bracelets
1) Begin by taking your cord and cutting 14 inches. Take the end of the cord and make a very small loop (the smallest loop you can make) and tie like you would the end of a balloon where you take the whole loop and bend around and tie. Leave an excess of at least an inch:
2) Add two of the large gold/silver bead balls over both the cord itself and the inch excess cord. Go all the way up to the knot. Trim any excess cord that comes out of the 2nd bead ball:
3) Begin stringing your beads. For bead combinations, take a look at my close-up final bracelet images (at the end of the post) for bead layout ideas. I like to use a larger bead in the middle of the bracelet (for the top of the wrist) and do the exact bead pattern on each side of the large center bead.
For your first bracelet, you’ll need to use your wrist as the guide to figure out how many beads you can have:
4) When you get to the end of your bracelet and you have used your wrist as the measurement, add two final gold/silver bead balls and then slip on the lobster clasp and loop the cord back around through the first gold/silver bead ball:
5) Pull the cord through the first bead but not too tight. You’ll want to make sure your beads have room to bend and move while it’s on your wrist, so give yourself about a 1/4th inch give in the cord:
6) Take your excess cord and wrap it around the cord in between the two bead balls to tie a square knot (a square knot is two knots-the first knot is up and under and the second knot is the opposite-down and over- Basically, you tie two simple knots but just alternate the direction) Do not pull your cord too tight to strengthen your knot. The cord will snap if you pull too tight:
7) Take the excess end of your cord and run it down through the 2nd gold/silver bead ball and trim excess so the end of the cord is right at the ball opening. You’ll have to pull some on the end of your lobster clip to make room to slip the cord in:
And that’s it!!
For necklaces, you use the same exact technique but you’ll need more cord. I measure my neck and add an additional 6 inches for loops, knots and excess cord.
I really hope you guys try this project because it’s really so fun to come up with different combinations and in minutes, you can make your own jewels. Instant jewelry gratification!
I also actually have an easy technique for making gorgeous earrings too but not sure if you guys are interested in jewelry making projects. Let me know if you guys have any interest in an easy earring DIY project and if so, I’ll share that as well.
Thanks so much for stopping by and I hope you have a fantastic Labor Day!