Growing up in the 1970’s, I predictably spent part of my childhood making macramé. In fact, I spent hours tied to the ends of masses of cording creating the ubiquitous plant hangers that have become an icon of the era. Call me sentimental, but I got a warm and fuzzy feeling when asked to dust off my knotting fingers and make a hemp macramé bracelet for Rings & Things’ Blog.
One of Rings & Things’ most popular online jewelry projects has always been Project #68-002-10 (catchy title, eh?). Well, we decided it was time to give our classic, line-drawing macramé technique sheet some 21st Century pep. Here goes …
First, you’ll want to gather all your materials — and a great thing about hemp bracelets is that they don’t require much!
Here’s what you’ll need to make one 8-inch bracelet:
- Beads (see below to make your choices)
- Tape (good ole’ masking tape works great)
- Scissors or clippers
- Optional: a clipboard, to make your project portable
For the beads, you’ve got a lot of options, but the important thing to keep in mind is that the hole size needs to be large enough to encompass two strands of cord! For 1mm hemp cord, the holes need to be at least 2mm wide (preferably wider).
You’ll use 5-8 smaller beads to adorn the knotted bracelet. Options include:
And, you’ll use 1 larger bead (or large-hole button) to create a simple clasp. Options include:
For the bracelet pictured above, I decided to go full retro 1970’s and use barrel Mirage Beads™ since they are reminiscent of the mood rings that were popular back then — the beads actually change color with small temperature changes!
I decided to also use C-Koop enameled copper “shorties” because I’ve always liked the colorful, enameled C-Koop components. For the clasp, I chose a matching
C-Koop enameled copper cupped disk which worked perfectly to make a simple button-style clasp.
Plan your pattern ahead of time to see how many beads will fit in the desired bracelet length. You can use just one type of bead, or create a pattern that alternates between 2 or more types/colors of beads. In the bracelet pictured above, I chose to use 7 beads in a simple alternating pattern that is symmetrical and centered, with an enameled “shortie” in the center: M E M E M E M. I also chose to space my beads so that the blue enameled shorties would NOT end up next to the blue enameled clasp (cupped disk).
Once you’ve gathered all your supplies, cut your hemp cord into the following measurements:
- One 10″ piece
- One 20″ piece
- One 70″ piece (the remainder)
Find the centers of the 20″ piece and the 70″ piece and place the center loop of one on top of the center of the other.
Then, take the center of your 10” cord and make a half-hitch knot around the center of the longer four strands. Check to make sure the cording is still even and all ends still match up.