How to Make Peruvian Bracelets

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Learning just a few basic knots will turn you into a friendship bracelet making champ! Learn how to create a Peruvian wave bracelet in no time -- it's like being back in the arts and crafts cabin at camp. Plus, it's the perfect present for your BFF!

Things You'll Need

  • 4 skeins of embroidery floss, 2 strands per color, 6 ft/strand
  • Hemp, yarn, or nylon cording – any cording/string that is thicker than the embroidery floss, 26” in length
  • Pair of scissors
  • Clipboard or tape
  • Jewelry clasp (lobster clasp) and jump ring
  • Craft glue
  • A toothpick
Peruvian bracelet DIY.
Peruvian bracelet DIY. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Project Steps

Step 1

In order to create your Peruvian bracelet, you'll need: 4 skeins of embroidery floss, 2 strands per color, 6ft/strand (these strands will be folded in half.) Hemp, yarn, or nylon cording – any cording/string that is thicker than the embroidery floss, 26” in length (this cording will be folded in half.) A pair of scissors, a clipboard/tape to hold the bracelet in place while working, a jewelry clasp (lobster clasp) and jump ring, and some craft glue along with a toothpick to dab. Please see the last slide for an itemized list of tools and materials.

Required project materials.
Required project materials. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 2

Take the thicker cording, fold it in half to make a loop, and find the center point.

The arrow points out the center point of the thick cording.
The arrow points out the center point of the thick cording. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 3

Take the four strands of embroidery floss, find the center point, and tie these strands to the thicker cording leaving about ½ inch below the edge. This will create a loop at the top of the cord. Tape this knot to the ground or use a clipboard to keep the bracelet in place while you work.

Loop made by tying strands.
Loop made by tying strands. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 4

Bring all the strands to the left side of the cording and pick your first color to begin with (I started with yellow). Make a forward knot over the cording closest to the right and then another forward knot over the cording on the left. (See next slide for forward knot breakdown.)

Beginning the bracelet with forward knots.
Beginning the bracelet with forward knots. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 5

To make a forward knot, take the working string and make a 4 with it, looping it under the cording, pulling through the opening and bringing it up to the top of the bracelet. Two of these creates a forward knot.

Forward knot breakdown
Forward knot breakdown (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 6

Repeat this step with the other strand in the corresponding color next, and then following with the three other colors. On the last string, the 6th, tie a regular forward knot on the first cord and then for the second cord, tie a combo forward/backward knot, making one half of a forward knot and then one half of a backward knot. This will bring the string to the left side of the bracelet. (See next slide for backward knot breakdown.)

Forward/backward knot.
Forward/backward knot. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 7

To make a backward knot, which is basically mirroring the forward knot on the right side, take the working string and make a backwards 4 with it, looping it under the cording, pulling through the opening and bringing it up to the top of the bracelet. Two of these creates a backward knot.

Backward knot breakdown.
Backward knot breakdown. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 8

After tying the forward/backward knot it’s time to go back in the opposite direction. Start with the cording on the right side and, instead of making forward knots similar to those done in Step 4, make a backwards knot on each piece of cording. (An easy way to remember, forward knots from left to right and backward knots from right to left.)

Backward/forward knot.
Backward/forward knot. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 9

Repeat this step with the other strand in the corresponding color next, and then following with the three other colors. On the last string, the 6th, tie a regular backward knot on the first cord and then for the second cord, tie a combo backward/forward knot, making one half of a backward knot and then one half of a forward knot. This will bring the string back to the right side of the bracelet.

Wave pattern is beginning to show.
Wave pattern is beginning to show. (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 10

Continue to repeat Steps 4 – 9 until you reach a length that will wrap around your wrist and make a small loop with the cording and tie a forward knot around it with the remaining strands of string to secure.

Knotting end of bracelet
Knotting end of bracelet (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 11

Dab a bit of craft or fabric glue on the strings and cording to secure them in place and let the bracelet dry before making a clean cut at the end.

Glue dabbing
Glue dabbing (Image: Marisa Lynch)

Step 12

Add a jump ring to the loop at one end and a spring ring or lobster clasp to the loop at the other end to complete the bracelet.

Adding a jump ring to the loop.
Adding a jump ring to the loop. (Image: Marisa Lynch)
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