Nylon parachute cord, also known as paracord or 550 cord, has become popular to use for knotting and braiding projects to produce useful items. Paracord comes in a wide variety of colors and thickness and is a useful outdoor and survival tool. A completed and carried paracord project could be the source of cord in a survival situation. Paracord projects are made using a series of knots to end up with a useful piece.
A lanyard is a good starting project for learning to knot paracord. A lanyard is made with a single piece of paracord and provides a hand filling attachment to your important stuff. The lanyard has a clip on one end and the other can be a key ring, pocket knife, or even your cell phone.
A bracelet from paracord using a side release buckle can be the next project. The buckle is like the plastic buckles on backpacks and messenger bags. Once completed, a cord bracelet provides a handy way to carry around three yards of paracord for when you need it most. The ultimate expression of the bracelet is the rescue belt, in which you can wear many feet of paracord as a belt. A slip-on bracelet without a buckle is another option.
A paracord watchband is simply the bracelet style of knot tying done twice. The same type of side-release plastic buckle can be used to provide a secure-fitting watch. The watchband is a truly useful project, so this may be the project to learn some new knots for an interesting look.
Paracord pouches can be used for many different applications. Outdoors aficianados may want to have pouches for their multitools, GPS receivers, or flashlights. The Stormdrane's Blog, which gives detailed instructions on paracord projects, shows a beer can cozy made from paracord. Another interesting project is a glow-in-the-dark paracord pouch made from nylon cord that glows in the dark.