From friendship bracelets to hair wrapping, basic knots are used in a variety of arts and crafts projects. One of the most popular ways to use knots is in the creation of hemp bracelets. By using a combination of knotting, braiding and wrapping techniques it is possible to create intricate and unique patterns in hemp. By learning how to perform a few simple knots you too can create your own hemp bracelets as well as other kinds of jewelry.
Things You'll Need
1mm hemp (colored or natural)
Small beads (optional)
Square Knot Hemp Bracelet
Cut two pieces of 1mm hemp, one 90 inches long and the other 30 inches long. Hold the two pieces together and fold them in half, aligning the ends of the hemp so they are of equal length on each side. Tie a knot at the fold, leaving a loop approximately 1/2 inch long.
Position your hemp strands so that the shorter two are in the middle (these will be your base strands) and the longer two are on either side (these will be your knotting strands). Loosely drape the left knotting strand over the two base strands to form a number four shape. Do the same with the right knotting strand but pass the strand under the base strands, forming a backwards number four shape.
Pass the end of the left knotting strand up through the loop formed by the right knotting strand, then loop the end of the right knotting strand over and through the loop formed by the left knotting strand. Hold the base strands taught and tighten the knot by pulling on the knotting strands.
Repeat this pattern until your base strands are covered with knots and the resulting pattern is long enough to fit around your wrist.
Finish your bracelet by trimming off any extra hemp and tying a large knot on the end. Secure the bracelet on your wrist by passing the knot through the loop on the other end and pulling it tight.
Spiral Wrapped Hemp Bracelet
Cut two strands of hemp. The first strand should be the approximate size you want your bracelet to be plus 4 inches to allow for adding closures. The second strand should be very long, at least three times the length of the first strand.
Tie the two strands together with a basic overhand knot, about 2 inches from the end of the hemp strands. Secure the knotted end of the hemp strands to a table with a clamp or adhesive tape.
Hold the shorter strand (your base strand) taut and drape the longer (knotting) strand loosely over it to form a number four shape. Wrap the end of the knotting strand around the base strand and pass it back through the loop. Pull the resulting knot tight and slide it all the way up the base strand.
Repeat this process until the resulting hemp bracelet is long enough. To add beads, slide a bead onto both strands of hemp after every inch or half-inch of knotting.
Finish your hemp bracelet by trimming off any excess hemp, leaving 1 or 2 inches of excess. To form closures you may either simply tie the bracelet to your wrist or you can tie on metal clasps using the excess hemp.
Try using colored hemp to create friendship bracelets and colorful designs. You can also add beads to your hemp bracelets by stringing small beads onto a strand of hemp before tying it into the pattern.
Do not cut your base strands too short or all of your hard work will be wasted when you discover the bracelet will not fit around your wrist. Likewise, make sure your knotting strands are at least three times the length of the base strands so you have enough material to work with.