When I was a kid, I was the queen of friendship bracelets. Braids, macrame, even adding beads - it was one of my earliest crafty skills. So when I get my hands on colorful cord, it always takes me back! Using a summery cord like hemp and some matching buttons is all you need to create stacks of tassel-ended bracelets. It's the perfect camp craft or girls' night project.
How to Make an Easy Friendship Bracelet
- Assorted hemp cord
- Clipboard (or other way to secure your work)
Cut three long strands of hemp to 24 inches long each. Find the center point at 12 inches, and double them, creating a loop. Tie an overhand knot 1 inch from the end of the loop, creating a loop closure that will slip over your button. You want the loop to be as small as possible for a secure closure, but be sure that your button can actually pass through this loop before moving on to the next step.
You will now have 6 strands, 11 inches long each. I'm using simple braiding in today's design, making this an extremely fast and easy project.
Clip your loop under a clipboard (or, raise your hand if you made friendship bracelets the old-school way, with a safety pin attached to the knee of your jeans!) to secure it.
I'll be sharing two ways to braid the bracelet, starting with the easiest way: a typical, 3-part braid. Group the strands into 3 pairs (you can sort by color, if you like), and braid, pulling each group from the left to the center then right to the center, in an alternating pattern.
Alternately, you can create a 6-part fishtail braid. This is also an easy braid using the same movements. Separate your six strands into two groups of 3 each. From the right side, pull the right-most strand over the two other right strands, passing it to the inner part of the left group of strands. Then, from the left side, pull the left-most strand over the other left strands, passing it to the inside of the right grouping. This creates a flatter, tighter weave than a traditional braid.
Braid down the bracelet approximately 7 inches (this length can be adjusted longer or shorter, depending on the wearer). Kids' wrists will be smaller, of course, and men's bracelets will need to be longer - but you can do a quick-measure against your wrist to check the length to be sure.
Once you've reached the appropriate point, thread the hemp through a button, moving the button up tightly against the braid.
Continue braiding for another 1/2 inch to 1 inch (I braided one inch here, but if you prefer less "tail" you can adjust that length). Tie the bracelet off with an overhand knot, and cut the ends off, leaving a tassel of your desired length. (This is a 1-inch tassel.)
The bracelets are easily worn (and removed) by looping one end over the button. And while friendship bracelets were meant to be tied on and worn until they wore out, back in the day, you can easily take these off and save them!
They're fun to stack together, and one package of hemp and assorted buttons will make up several bracelets! You can team up with a friend and share supplies, make and give them, or wear different colors to match your mood for the day. Happy crafting!