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Creative Glass Art by Jeannie Cox

Friday, July 29, 2011

Hemp Bracelet and other Hemp Knots

Working with macrame knotting in jewelry with hemp, or other thread/twine, can be as simple or as complex as the maker wishes.  Below I have a short tut on a bracelet based on the simple knots in my previous post and also have listed some other knot variations.  This can also easily be converted to a necklace by making it longer.
BRACELET 101 - - Use 2 strings, each approximately 5 feet long, folded  with 8-12 inches on short side and make a simple loop knot, leaving an open loop at the top for a clasp.  You could also attach these strings to a clasp finding if you wish.  Clamp down, secure the 2 shorter strings as the center or core strings you will be weaving around.
Make a series of square knots (the combo of forward and backwards "4" knots from my last tut) - the design is up to you. You could add multiple beads to these knots also.  Knot until you have enough knotting done until it will reach about half way around your wrist.
Add beads how you wish.  In this example, I show how to create a multiple bead centerpiece for this bracelet.  Add a main bead through the center 2 threads and add as many smaller beads to each thread on the sides until it would reach all the way around the center bead.
Tie another "4 knot" pull all surrounding beads tightly around the center bead.  Continue your knotting design along the rest of the bracelet.
Here is the finished knotting for this bracelet.
Add a simple loop knot at the end of your bracelet.
Pull each loose string individually to tighten as snugly as possible.
The easiest way to end off this bracelet is to leave about 3 inches of string at the ends and knot 2 separate strands together, cutting off any extra string.  This is simple and also will allow some adjustment for different wrist sizes.
To secure the bracelet on the wrist, simply put one of the loose strand pairs through the loop and knot around your wrist. You could also add a bead to the end, leaving a little wiggle room on the strings and then secure the bracelet by feeding the bead through the loop at the other end, like a toggle clasp.
Half hitch knot - - loop one string around one of the core/center strings, looping it through itself.
Tighten the loop.
Here I am doing the same thing to the other side, but in the opposite direction.  As you can see, the half-hitch knot also will spiral around the center string.
Finished with both strands of half-hitch knots.
Butterfly knot - - this one is exactly the same as making a square knot (forward 4, then backward 4), except you leave a space between the last knot and the new knot you are making.  Here is the first half-square of the square knot.
After adding the second part of the square knot, your knot is now secure and tight.
After securing your square knot tightly, push the knot up your center strings against  your previous knots.  This creates the butterfly knot.
Here is a series of butterfly knots - - you can also add beads along as you wish, as I did on one knot above.
How about 3 strings?  As I said previously, you can make these jewelry pieces more complex.  In this case, I am using 3 strings, side by side to create a wider band.
Take 4 strings from either side (I am starting with the right side, obviously) and make a square knot - - this is the first tie section of the square.
Having the right square not complete, now work with the left 4 strings.  the left 2 strings of the right-side knot will now become the center and outside string of the left-side knot.  Now, make a square knot with these 4 strings.
Completed square knot on the left side.  Keep alternating these knots to create a wider necklace, bracelet or even a belt.  You can also add beads as you wish along the strands.
Multiple alternating square knots on the 3 strands - - beads added to one set of loops for example.
I hope you enjoyed these variations on knotting.  And, it doesn't have to stop there, you can have multiple strands with many alternating knots to create various designs.  Enjoy!

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