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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Funky Stretch Bracelet Tutorial

For this week's 'episode', I'll be instructing you guys on how to make a cute bracelet worthy of gifting!  All you need is some stretchy cord, bugle beads, bicone beads, stringing glue and about 20-45 minutes of your time.  I know that's a big time gap, but to be honest, it takes people longer to do this sort of thing on their first couple of tries.  Once you get the rhythm, Ooooooh baby, it won't take you long at all.  I can actually make 3 of them in 45 minutes now.
Anyways, here we go!  Take a look at your materials!
Stretchy Cord

Bugle beads

Bicone Beads

Stringing Glue

Step 1:  Place your first beads
Measure a length of stretchy cord 3.2 times your desired length.  Don't look at me like that, YES it has to be that long.  Now, start with 4 beads in the following order- bugle, bicone, bugle, bicone.

Step 2: Move to your next row
This step is 'tricky' or so I've been told.  Take the end of the string opposite your last bicone and put it through the hole of the bicone that the first string exits  The result should look like this:
If it looks like this,

you put the string through the wrong hole!  Pull it back out and put it through the other hole.  Pull taut.
Step 3: Continue the trend!
Place 2 beads on one strand in the order: bugle, bicone.  Then place on bugle bead on the opposite strand.  Work the bugle strand through the 'exit wound' of the bicone (ONLY the bicone) on the opposite strand, just like you did in Step two.  Pull taut.  You see how this is going?  Yeah?  Repeat until you get close to your desired length.
Step 4: Finish it!
Stop a centimeter or so shy of you desired length.  If you keep going, you'll have a loose floppy bracelet, not a stretchy one!  Make sure the end of your chain has no bugles on the free strands.  Now, place a bugle on each 'free' strand.  See, that?  Yes, I know I contradicted myself, but I'm doing it so you don't make the mistakes I did.  Now, pull those strands through your FIRST bicone, you know, the little guy you put on between the two bugle beads at the very beginning of your bracelet!  Unfortunately, I don't know how to draw that in MSPaint, so, you'll have to use your imagination.

Pull taut.  Tie the strands, double, or triple knot them.  Then, apply a small blob of glue for extra hold.  Allow the glue to dry.  Cut the excess cord as close to the knot as possible.  TADA!  You're done.

Note: Try using different shapes and styles of beads to get different bracelet effects.  You can even make a wavy effect by using bicones of graduated sizes!  Experiment with the length of your 'chain' to make rings and chokers too!  Just remember, use clasps for the chokers... you don't want to strangle anyone.

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