Thursday, November 28, 2013

Beaded Bracelets

Happy Making. Happy Thanksgiving. I have a second bracelet for you, today! Make zig zag, plain and patterned bracelets with melting beads (Hamas or Perler.) These are addictive and fun.  

Living abroad, the pressure is on me to bring things of my culture to the kids and since today is
Thanksgiving , whether it's your holiday or not: I'm "thankful" for you!  In addition to the simple "easy weave bracelets" I've shared earlier today, these are great for bigger creators in your midst!

The idea for these came about, as I was contemplating my annual Thanksgiving conversations that I'd have with the kids. I look for Thanksgiving books, films, poems, etc --- points of reference to weave my history into that of my own children. I started thinking that this year I'd like to do something new: handicrafts from the period of time of that first harvest meal.  I thought of things like dying cloth from vegetables but, ... we're busy and it's dark and cold outside. I wanted something easy and fun. Going to ever popular friendship bracelets in Native American patterns made so much sense to me: you only need your creativity, plastic beads, elastic thread and a scissors. We've had tremendous fun creating patterned bracelets all week long and hope that you do, too ---- where ever you live! 

Continue below for tutorial for basic beading with instruction on how to make a Zig-zag pattern ....

To Make a Basic Bead Bracelet:
1. Cut length of elastic.
2. Knot the end (or add a larger bead for security, if prefered) of the elastic and begin threading your elastic.
3. Decide how thick you would like your bracelet to be. To make a bracelet that is 4 bead tall, you will string on 4 beads and then, add 2 new beads every other round. Once the 4 bead have been strung on, you will add one new bead at a time and thread back into and old bead that has already been strung so which is why, as you proceed, you will only add 2 new beads per row. Hint: keep in mind that you are always threading a new bead and then, threading back into an old bead. To finish, simply see that the pattern fits together and thread the beads together. Tie and finish.

How Zig Zag Bracelet:
You will work from left to right, tight to left: A zig zag bracelet start with a row of 4 beads, but every other row only adds 2 beads to the bracelet.
Zig Zag instructions for a bracelet that is 4 beads deep:1. First Row (left to right): white, white, blue, blue
2. 2nd (right to left) white, blue
3. 3rd (left to right): blue, white
4. 4th(right to left) white, blue
5. 5th(left to right):white, blue
6. 6th(right to left) blue, white
7. 7th (left to right): white, blue
Continue this pattern until you reach desired length . At your last turn match up the first and last patterns and then, attached with the same elastic. Tie well. Cut and Enjoy!

(Make these Paper Feather Head dresses while creating! Printable Template here)

Tips: This is easiest when using a needle, if the children are old enough. Tighten beads as you go. This keeps the pattern intact and will make the weaving your most easy going. 

Something you might like:
Easy Weave Bracelets (This pairs perfectly with these bracelets for youngest children)

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