Beaded Braided Bracelet

Took a class, actually took a class in braiding with beads over the weekend at a local bead store. I knew what the standard technique was supposed to look like, but my attempts to recreate it were awful, so I wanted to have somebody show me what I was doing wrong. It turns out that the main thing I was doing "wrong" was using a marudai, as most of the techniques use a braiding disk. So, taking the class showed I just need different techniques or something. Anyway, here's what I made:

Braid 42, bracelet with fire polish beads.

The underlying braid is an 8-strand Kongo Gumi round braid. Four of the strands are unbeaded, two are strung with gold beads, and two are strung with black beads. The standard technique has you only adding a bead when the strand is moving from the "2" position down to the "5" position, but the tension on my strands was not as great even after I upped the weight on each strand to 1.75 ounces, and I was going through cord much faster than I was going through braids. So, I started over and added a bead every time a beaded strand was moving. This gives my braid a double helix instead of a single helix and inspires me to find beads in green, cyan, silver, and tan, and encode something.

I also saw that Jacqui Carey has an entire book out with 192 pages of braiding with beads. I'll have to pick that up at some point.

2009.04.01 at 7:30am EDT