I’ve gotten hooked on crafting different bracelets this summer and these Beaded Braid ones are my current favorites. I first saw them on Pinterest and followed the link back to Honestly WTF, the home of this and many other great bracelet tutorials.
I think these are even easier than the macrame bracelets I made during 30DoC. At least once you get going…
My local bead store only carried a few colors of Irish waxed linen for this project, and now, sadly, I see they’re consolidating with their store in Berkeley and closing the local shop. I finally stopped procrastinating about ordering online and followed the link on Honestly WTF to Ornamentea. What yummy colors: Emerald, Turquoise, Cobalt, Lavender, Garnet and Pomegranate.
I understand about wanting to start crafting something right away. Go ahead and purchase supplies locally if you can. But think about looking online and placing a little supply order for some waxed linen and beads so you can make more, beautiful bracelets. The supplies will arrive before you know it and you can start braiding these sweet, little bracelets.
The closure is a button so you don’t even need any special findings or tools. Just the waxed Irish linen, the beads, a button and if you want, a little charm.
I think the clever and creative ladies at Honestly WTF must be especially dexterous. I’m good with my hands and I’ve made a lot of things but I can’t manage to do some of these macrame and braided bracelets unless I tape them down or pin them to something. I always feel like I just don’t have enough fingers!
By the way – I made most of the bracelets using 8/0 seed beads but in several of the photos, including the one above, I used flat spacer beads made out of nickel which you can also find here at Ornamentea.
When I first tried making this bracelet it didn’t look anything like their photos. I kept undoing it and starting over. So I read through the directions carefully and made another attempt and it finally worked! I’m hoping my directions and pictures will help you do it right the first time.
Here’s how you can make your own Beaded Braid Bracelet.
Beaded Braid Bracelet
1.5 yards Irish Waxed Linen (4 ply, aprox. 1mm in diameter)
55 to 70 8/0 size Seed Beads
1 2-hole Button (aprox. 1/2 inch, or between 10 and 13 mm)
1 Small Charm (optional)
Tape (optional but highly recommended) to tape your bracelet to your work surface – I found it difficult to hold it while I tried to add beads, keep the braid tight and keep the bracelet from twisting. Washi tape is just the thing for keeping the bracelet in place while you work. Masking tape or painters tape would also work.
The 1.5 yards of cord is a little more than you’ll need but it is easier to work with and have a little to trim off than to skimp and be just a bit short.
Cut the Irish waxed linen cord into two pieces: one of 26 inches and one of about 18 inches.
Fold the longer piece in half, lining up the two ends evenly. Take the shorter piece and line one end up with the other two and curve the other end around the fold of the longer piece forming the loop which is one end of your bracelet.
In the picture below you can see the longer piece folded in half. The shorter piece has one end lined up with the two ends of the long cord and the short end bending around the fold of the long cord.
Hold the two cords together at the bended end, forming a two-strand loop.
Tie a knot about 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch from the loop. In the picture below, I’ve tried to mark where you first tie a knot… (follow the PINK tape) than you trim the short tail off, just below the knot (follow the neon green tape).
Which leaves you with with a double loop of cord, a knot and three strands ready for braiding.
(Side note on braiding. I assumed you would know how to braid. If you’d like directions on braiding three strands, you can go here. You just keep repeating the steps until you have the length of braid you want, which in this case is about1/2 inch as follows.)
Already know how to braid? Continue here: Braid the three strands tightly together for about 1/2 inch. At this point I find it easiest to tape it to my work surface to I can keep the braid fairly straight and even.
Now you will start adding beads to each strand as you cross them over. Start with the left side and put a bead on the cord.
The trick with this bracelet is pushing the bead all the way to the base of the braid and when you cross the cord to the center of the braid, the bead should be behind the x made with those two pieces of cord.
In the picture, above, I put my first bead on the left side. It isn’t pushed all the way down here. In the next picture I’ve pushed it down to the base and crossed the left cord over the center cord.
You can see the two cords make a little X with the cord that is now on the left pushing back on the bead. The next bead is added on the right and that cord will than cross to the center.
Again, the bead is pushed tightly to the base of the braid and the cord is crossed to the center with the cord now on the far right pushing the bead back and the two cords forming the X in front of the bead.
Continue adding a bead before each time you cross the cord to the center. Push the bead down than cross the cord to the center, keeping the bead behind the X of the cords and keeping the braid tight. The wax on the cord helps keep the braid snug and the beads in place.
This next step is optional – I am not sure it really saved me time, and I don’t think saving time is really my goal when I’m crafting. But you can try it if you like: once you have the rhythm of adding a bead and crossing the cord over you can add several beads to each strand, pushing them tightly down one at a time as before.
Other people have told me they enjoy doing it this way. I found I would get lost trying to figure out which strand I was on. So again, this is an optional step.
Either way, continue beading until you’ve reached your desired length, keeping in mind that after the beaded section you’ll still have another half inch or so of braided cord and the button. I don’t want a tight bracelet so I measure my wrist and add about 1 inch to that length to get my finished size.. You can un-tape your bracelet from your work surface and measure on your own wrist or, once you’ve got one completed that is the right size, measure against that one.
Finish the bracelet with a half inch of plain braid (without beads) like at the beginning. Add a charm if you want.
Braid a bit more after the charm so it doesn’t get lost under the button. Tie the three strands in a knot and slide on the button – 1 cord through 1 hole and two cords through the other hole.
Tie a knot on the other side of the button. Pull the strands apart to tighten the knot.
Trim the ends and you’re done!
Make some more. Stack them together or wear them with other bracelets. Like these.
The bracelet with spacer beads is made the same but the spacer beads are narrower than the 8/0 gauge ones so it takes a few more beads to make a bracelet.
Thanks for the visit. Let me know if you make one of these fun bracelets!
UPDATE: Check out my Readers’ Gallery to see pictures of some great bracelets made by readers’ of my blog.
82 responses to “Beaded Braid Bracelet”
Too cute! Love the bracelets. 🙂
Thanks! I hope you give them a try.
This is so cute! Your instructions were so easy to follow. My step-daughters, my own daughter and I will have lots of bracelet fun next weekend! Thank you!
Hi, Harley (or is it Juli?) – Thanks! I’m still enjoying bracelet making and brought beads and cord with me on vacation to make bracelets with some friends. I hope you will take and share some photos from your crafting time.
I am going to try these, they are really neat.
Hi, Jeanette – I hope you do. Earlier this week I wore a pink one that I made this summer alongside a silver bracelet with a tiny heart charm I got for Christmas and they looked so pretty together.
Those are really cute!!!
Thank you! You should make these with your daughter.
LOVE!!! And thank you for all the details . . . I must try this! 🙂
You must! I’ve been making these in different colors and wearing them nearly every day. I hope you find the photos helpful. Be sure and follow the link back to Honestly WTF and see their great pictures.
These are great and I will be looking forward to the giveaway that includes these! Such a thing would ease the pain of losing that beautiful marbleized notebook.
Or maybe I should just bring the stuff and show you and Jean and Andy how to each make your own!
Too cute! I attempted to make some last night with what I have. I tried 2 different brands of cord (Darice and Elements) similar to the Irish Linen and I couldn’t get size 8 or 6 beads on it 😦 Oooh! I just found some S-Lon- It looks thinner so perhaps I’ll try it tonight!
Thanks for the inspiration!
Good luck! It is frustrating to have supplies that don’t all work with each other. I don’t know any of those cords but I do know the wax makes it grippy. I’ve worked with C-Lon which might be similar to S-Lon, I don’t know. If so, it might be a little challenging because it is very springy. Let me know what you find. Thanks for writing!
SCORE!!! The S-Lon (or could be C-Lon, but it looks like an S?) worked with size 8 and wasn’t stretchy. Yeah…I’m so happy & excited! Thank you so much!!!
YAY! That is great. I’d love to see a picture when you complete a bracelet.
This is an awesome tutorial! I’m excited to try it, thank you!
Hi, Megan – Thanks for the comment. I hope you try it because I think you’ll love the resulting bracelet. I tried to clear up a few steps after I originally posted, so please do ask if something isn’t clear.
Super cute!! I am going to try this one! Thanks for explaining in great detail:)
Thank you. I can’t stop making these!
I’m going on vacation in September and making some for friends I’ll see. I know I need photos myself. Have fun.
This is just so cool! Can’t wait to try this out and I will be checking back to see your other crafty ideas.
Thanks, Karen. If you decide to make one, send a picture. I’m in the process of putting together a gallery of readers’ photos of projects or recipes they’ve created that were inspired by a post they found on my site. I’d love to include yours.
Hey! I found this through Craftgawker and I am looking forward to trying them…they certainly would be a nice change from the usual embroidery floss bracelets I make!
So thanks for the lovely tutorial 🙂
Also, in one of the pictures at the bottom of the instructions there is a bracelet with three interconnecting silver hoops…did you make that? If so, could you post how to do that? It’s gorgeous!
Thank you for your comments! The one with the connected hoops is a macrame bracelet and I posted instructions for it here: Macrame Bracelet. The links are from a bead store and are called connectors or charms. The store where I got it also has a website: Baubles and Beads.
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Thanks so much for your tutorial. You have inspired me to make some of these. Finding the correct supplies is the most frustrating part along with finding the time!!!
Thank you for the comment! I’m still making, and loving, these bracelets. Finding the supplies can be a challenge and sometimes ordering them online is the easiest solution. Finding the time is another challenge – that I can’t help you with.
My Grandaughter & I will have fun making these cute bracelets. WANDA
Thanks for letting me know, Wanda! I’d love to include a photo in my Reader’s Gallery.
Great tutorial, so easy to understand! I’ll definitely try this 🙂
Thanks, Kirsten. If you do, I’d love to hear how they turn out and would be delighted to see a photo.
FYI… to hold cords tight… tape works well, but if you have a loop to begin with a cup hook works perfectly. i also found that when crafting multiple strands a piece of cardboard with slots cut will hold my cords evenly spaced and taut. thanks for the ideas.
Thanks, Teresa – that’s a great suggestion. I had someone say they’ve been successful using a stury clipboard. Thanks for the comment.
I love to make anklets for the summer, I have a color for every sundress I own…this is an awesome idea for another way to make them! Thanks for the easy to follow instructions, I love the bracelets!
Thanks, Marcia – I’d love to see pictures of any anklets you make with these instructions. Thanks for your comment.
how do you make the blue one with the big round silver loops? I want to make them 4 my friends.
Hi, Maggie – Put “macrame bracelet” in the search tool on my blog, or cut and paste this into you address bar of your browser: https://diannefaw.wordpress.com/2012/06/30/day-30-macrame-bracelet/ The post includes directions and links for buying the supplies if you need them. Thanks for asking!
Me ha encantado tu trabajo, es mui bonito!
I dont wana make one, i want to buy one. Do you sell them?
No, I’m sorry, I don’t.
We love these bracelets…just made 2 in preparation for teaching 35 girls how to make them on summer camp next week – Thanks x
Hi, Pam – Thanks for the comment! I’d love to include pictures of your bracelets (or of the girls next week at summer camp) in my Readers’ Gallery! I appreciate hearing from you.
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Beautiful bracelets and a great tutorial ! Very easy to follow, thanks for sharing it:)
Thanks, Robyn! I’m working on another bracelet you can see here: https://diannefaw.wordpress.com/2013/08/10/wrapped-leather-and-bead-bracelet/ I’m trying out a triple wrap today and I’m about 2/3 of the way through.
Just made one for my grand daughter using DMC coton perle no 5 thread and seed beads in a random purple metallic colour. Beautiful. Many thanks for your informative tutorial.
Glad to hear it, Lyn. I bet it’s beautiful! Lucky granddaughter.
LOVE all the details in you directions! You truly “teach” here and leave nothing to the imagination, so THANK YOU!
Looking fwd to making a few tonight!
Thank you! I looked at lots of posts and videos before making my own bracelets so I tried to find the balance between too little and too much information.
Done! I used black cord (which I had to separate into 3 strands) with hot pink beads and added a key charm. I’m a Thirty-One consultant so hot pink & black are our “colors” and the key represents the key to unlocking your potential. This will be a perfect everyday bracelet and great to wear at my parties! I’ll figure out how to upload a pic. THANKS AGAIN! Can’t wait to check out your other ideas! 🙂
Thanks, Laurie! I’ll take a look at your site. I haven’t heard of Thirty-One. I’m so pleased that you have already made a bracelet! I hope you find other projects that you enjoy. I look forward to seeing a picture.
nice something i can actually make that looks cute!
Cute + easy = big thumbs up! Thanks for the comment.
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Dianne, I need help! I have a basquet of braided bead bracelets by side but am having so much trouble understanding how to cut the 1.5 pieces of cord? I do not understand if I am to cut a piece 26″ long and another 18″ long? Please advise!
Hi, Debbie – You need 1 piece that is 26 inches long and one piece that is 18 inches long. Fold the 26 inch piece in half. Align one end of the shorter piece (the 18 inch piece) with the ends of the other piece. Then fold it so the fold matches up with the fold of the 26 inch piece. I hope that helps.
@Debbie Romero and I have the same problem.
1.5 yards = 54″
Your instructions say to cut 1 piece of 26″ cord, and another of 18″.
So, 26″ + 18″= 44″. What happens to the other 10″?
Hi, Sarah and Debbie – the truth is I’m lousy with numbers! I think when I was buying my cord I just rounded up. 😛 I do mention that 1.5 yards is a bit generous, but I’d rather have a few inches left over than not enough. Sorry not to be more careful with my measuring and math. Thanks for the question.
Thank you for clarifying!
By the way, do you think it’s possible to do an 8 strand like this, instead of just a 3 strand?
I don’t know how to braid more than three strands but I wouldn’t be surprised if there were DIY video’s on YouTube with directions.
very pretty, i can’t wait to follow this it and see how my bracelets turn out. Unlike you I work with beads, so would be more difficult, you can check out my work at Luxebeading.wordpress.com and let me know what you think. merci 🙂
I found ur post on pinterest… thought they looked cool and decided to try them out, I’ve made two so far and they are pretty easy and really neat. They look better the more u do.
Can this bracelet be made with another type of material other than waxed linen?
Hi, Curly Girl – Thanks for the question. I’ve only made them with waxed linen, so I really can’t say. It would be worth a try, but the waxed linen helps to keep the design snug and tight as you go. If you try it, I’d love to hear back how it goes.
So simple and soo cool
Thanks, Ruth! Isn’t it true how some of the simplest projects can be the most effective?
Love your bracelets – where did you get your word charms – think they look great kxx
Hi, Karin -It was ages since I made the bracelets but I’m sure I found them online. I suggest Etsy as a great place to search. Sorry for the delay responding – I’ve been away from my blog for quite some time.
Really enjoyed your tutorial! Thanks!
Gracias, muy bonitos y fáciles.
Gracias Patricia! Me alegra que te haya gustado la publicación. He estado lejos de los blogs, así que no he visto comentarios.
Thank you, I had seen this photo on Pinterest but couldn’t find the instructions. Now I know how to add & subtract that 4th line! Can you do this with embroidery floss?
Hi, Deb – I’ve never tried that but I think it would work. I’ve seen other bracelets online using embroidery floss. I’m sorry not to get back sooner – I was away from blogging!
Hi i was wondering can you use embroidery floss to make these bracelets
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