Well it has been a while (since last summer, I’m pretty sure) since I made up some woven bracelet designs, but I woke up with an idea yesterday, and had to make it right away! I love natural designs, and these nature-themed bracelets really embody the outdoors. They’re made from hemp, and the natural fibers are paired with nature button clasps and a mix of glass and metal beads. Hemp is a great component because it’s really inexpensive, and you can spend as much or as little as you like on beads for this design. Find a button in your stash, or order one that’s really special, because it’s the hero of this summery, stackable bracelet.
While you can find supplies to make up this design just about anywhere, I’ll leave a few affiliate links below to the exact buttons I used – since it’s the focal point, I know some of you will swoon like I did when I bought them in the first place. ;)
Supplies needed to make each DIY Beaded Button-Clasp Hemp Bracelet:
- Three lengths of 20-lb hemp, cut to approximately 30 inches long, any color
- Size 6/0 seed beads (I prefer Japanese, they typically have nice big holes)
- Optional metal nugget beads (I used silver and brass)
- Fabulous buttons: leaf, tree, and flower
- Clipboard or other way to secure your work
- Optional: craft glue
First, cut your hemp into three, 30-inch segments for each bracelet. Slightly shorter would be okay, but as you can’t add length if you’re short, I find it’s better to cut them a little long, and trim off the excess. Measure 14 inches down so that you’re nearly at the center of the hemp strands, and tuck it under your clipboard to secure it. Braid the three strands together for about 1.5 inches. Remove the braid from your clip, and form it into a loop. This will be the part that loops over your button clasp. Also, now would be a REALLY good time to test it out, and make sure that it does, in fact, fit over your button, without being too loose. :) Since you may be using different sized buttons than I did, verify this before moving on, and adjust it if necessary. Larger buttons will require a longer braided length, and for smaller buttons, 1.5 inches may be too large.
Next, slip the loop under the clip again, immediately next to where you’ve stopped braiding. You will now have 6 strands, roughly 14 inches long each. Pair them up into three segments, and begin braiding each pair as the photos above show. Every few passes, add a bead onto the outer-most strand. When you braid, it will stick out, and add sparkle, shine, texture, or whatever look you’re going for! It’s optional to add beads, but it’s sure a lot more fun.
When I add beads, I deliberately try NOT to create a pattern. I feel that the best look for this style is random and organic. But, follow your own instincts on this, because after all – it is your bracelet!
If you find that the hemp is beginning to unravel as you pass it through the beads, there is one more trick you can implement. Add a bit of craft glue to the end of each hemp strand, and wipe it clean with a paper towel, so that when it dries in just a few minutes, you’ll have a hard end (similar to a shoelace!) that you can more easily push through the holes in the beads. This is also why I typically choose Japanese beads (like Toho or Miyuki) because they have holes that are normally larger and more uniform than cheap Chinese beads. If you’re struggling with your beads, then you need thinner hemp, or a higher quality bead.
Another note about braiding here. You absolutely CAN create a proper 6-part braid. I just pair up the strands and make a 3-part braid because it’s so much easier to do. I’m all about easy. :P
Continue braiding for 7 inches, and then onto one or two of your hemp strands, string the button on. Continue to braid (with our without beads, but without is easier) for one more inch. Then, tie an overhand knot in the end to finish your bracelet.
Cut off the excess “tails” of hemp. I left mine about an inch long, so that they resemble a tassel – I am hearing that tassels are trending now, and this is an ultra-easy way to incorporate them into your summer style!
Finally, just slip the loop over the button, and you’ve got an earthy woven bracelet that’s all summer style. You can keep them, stack them, share them, gift them – hey, it’s summer! Do what you like! They’re like an easily removable friendship bracelet.
A couple ideas for variations: make them up without beads for guys, or instead of using buttons, you can try large wooden beads. This is a really flexible style, and once you buy an inexpensive stash of hemp, you can try new ideas, dirt cheap!
Thanks for joining me for today’s woven summer bracelet, and I sure hope you guys have a great weekend!