December 24, 2012

simple one button rope bracelet 2577

 This is a very simple design made with a few scraps of cord, a small plastic button, and 48" of nylon thread.

The outside cord loop is the framing cord which secures the button and forms the loop. The colored cords are the infill and can be any color or combination you like. This one is a mix of grey and green/blue which is a common color in my resource storage box a.k.a. "scrap box".

The construction technique is shown starting with part one of a seven part tutorial.

 Detail of the button and loop which shows how the cross stitching tightens the loop slightly enabling a secure but easy to open toggle closure.

A single piece of nylon thread can be used to secure the button and bind the fabric. The infill cords are doubled and the loop end placed inside the loop of the framing cord. In this example there are four cords on each side.

Here's a similar design made with black and blue synthetic materials.
 The materials are hand dyed cotton cord including some of the twisted cable cord. This adds a subtle texture alongside the smooth braided cords.

The binding process reduces the layout size about 50%. This example is about 7/8" wide.

See this design and others like it in the fiber art design section of WhatKnotShop on Etsy.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

December 13, 2012

beaded spiral bracelet 2536

 Another experiment using a heavier braided cotton line to make a simple two pass helix that is held together with cotton floss. The spacers are irregular glass beads culled from one of those "mass-o-glass" pots of beads found at Michael's.

These bead collections are about 30% unusable due to cracking, rough edges, and other defects but the variety of color, shape and sizes makes them perfect for use in these projects.
 As with many other of these cuffs the layout is done on a tube using thin needles to position the beads. The cotton floss is threaded through the cores of the beads and wrapped around the framing cords.

The loose ends are secured with green cotton floss using a traditional whipping or binding. This work was often done on the ends of hemp ropes to prevent the fraying of twisted cordage. Now a days synthetic lines are melted or burned to fuse the fibers.
This is a pretty flexible shape measuring about 8 5/8" (219 mm) inside circumference. The beads are all glass (no plastic)

Design variations: add more parts to the helix to increase width; Adjust spacing of beads; use single color beads; add whipping to the spaces between the beads; oversize the cord and use larger beads; infill the spaces with contrasting color beads.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

December 10, 2012

Spool bracelet two button cuff beaded tribal style bracelet 2535

 Continuing the series of tribal inspired cuffs this design is all whites, off whites, and grey. The beads are all clear glass some with a hint of purple color. The edges are a heavier hand dyed braided cord and the center area is made from the twisted cotton cable cord.
 There is an extra braided center cord that is bound into the thinner shell between the edges. Overall this one came out about 2" (51 mm) wide.
The off white buttons and loops come apart to make this 7 1/2" (191 mm) inside circumference wearable for people with bigger hands.

                Available here

More like this in the fiber art design section of WhatKnotShop on Etsy.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

December 8, 2012

beaded cable tie concept bracelet challenge 2546

 Would you rather an Arachnid? Looks something like a spider but more symmetrical and without the head thorax or abdomen...

This is a whimsical construction of black plastic cable ties, the kind you find at the hardware store, and tiny doughnut shaped green glass beads, the kind you find at the bead shop.

There is a cultural distance between these two shopping venues. I'll leave it to another post to discuss this or you may comment if you like...
 This example is only about 2" diameter which is small but the design can be expanded in two ways:

Add more beads to each tie increasing the segment length: -|||||||- to  -|||||||||||||||||||||-

Add additional ties to form a nine or ten or even eleven part polygon.

Design variation: Place an uneven numbers of beads on each tie, and color of beads and ties.
In this closeup you can see the beads are placed on the ties then the tail of one tie is placed in the ratchet of the next tie.

For the people who do numbers theory the ratio of beads to chords might be interesting. Post your suggestions.

Lastly if you have an idea on how to gracefully terminate the ties please post a comment.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

December 2, 2012

beaded cuff tribal statement bracelet grey, blue, green 2516

Another fabric cord cuff based on the Kuchi cuff form with the massive outer ribs and the thinner infill panel in the center. This one is grey with slate blue, light chocolate, and pale green cords offset by glass seed beads in cream, pearl grey, and brick red.

It is not as wide as a traditional Kuci cuff. the design measures only 2" (51 mm) wide instead of the 4" to 6" in some of the traditional cuffs.
The beads are placed in the cord matrix as the bracelet is assembled. Here you can see the beads in the infill cord which are a #30 cotton twine (about 1.5 mm diameter).  The bead color is more subtle than the photograph suggests.

When the nylon thread is tensioned the cords compress and the beads are held tightly together with the cord.

The ribs get a row of seed beads after the tensioning of the fabric is complete
The loops and buttons make this design open for people who might have hands that wont fit through a 7 1/2" (191 mm) internal circumference.   The weave and compression process left an open loop which was filled with a clear glass bead.

                         Available here

More like this in the fiber art design section of WhatKnotShop on Etsy.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 29, 2012

pair of Kuchi Cuffs - design inspiration

 This is a pair of so called "Kuchi cuffs" that I have in my collection sourced from an online vendor. The Kuchi people are Afghan Pashtun nomads. Jewelry like this is available from a large number of sites easily found with search on the term kuchi cuff.

The form of these bracelets is the inspiration for the ribbed cuffs that I have been making and posting here. The "H" shaped form is made from a pair of cast segmented pieces connected with a thin infill panel. The shape is tapered with one end about 5/8" wider than the other.
As you can see the heavy sections at the ends of these cuffs are different. One end is a smoother wrapped pattern about 1/2" wide resembling a cord tightly wrapped around a core material.

The other end is a kind of offset or expanded replication of the main pattern on the infill panel. The casting has a dark void space between the outer edge and the inner edge that is soldered to the infill panel. The material is a hard mixed metal   brass of unknown composition.

The cuffs are made with a hinge to enable the wearer to open them up and place them on the wrist. These are small measuring 7" (178 mm) inside circumference tapering to about 7 5/8" (193 mm)

The patterns are a repeating series of diamonds. circles, and linear shapes that resemble a textile fabric. The interior is smooth although this pair seems to have a lot of wear and some separation of the metal at the seams.

photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

grey and yellow beaded tribal inspired cuff bracelet 2517

 Here's another variation on the two-rib cuff design. The ribs are the layered clothesline cords that form the edges and are the structure of the cuff. The loops and buttons are stitched in these heavy cords. The infill cords and beads are laid out inside the edge cords held in place with long needles. Four ply nylon thread is passed through at 90 degrees and tensioned to form the cuff.

Each of these starts out with a similar structure but  develop into unique expressions as the materials are assembled.
The center row of beads are a collection of irregular shapes in a mostly blue green range. These are threaded into the nylon thread during the layout process. When the thread is tensioned the beads and cord are pulled tightly together forming a fabric. This tensioning process is done in sequence to gradually tighten the assembly from the center to the ends.

The resulting form is quite stiff and self supporting for a bunch of string!
 The edges are actually three cords arranged in a triangular relationship. This creates two seams on each rib: one outside, one inside. These seams are where the rows of glass seed beads are stitched in.

Colors are a mix of blues, greens and, off-white. The rib cords are a medium grey.

Size is a firm "medium" 7 1/2" (191 mm) inside circumference when closed.
Two brown plastic buttons and loops make this easy to open but secure when closed.

Look for this and other unique pieces in the fiber art design section of my Etsy shop.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 26, 2012

black beaded cuff 2515

 This is not an angry frog but a ribbed cuff made with paracord scraps and a tube of opaque black glass beads. The ribs are a charcoal grey hand dyed clothesline cord that reads quite a bit lighter in these photos than the actual piece. I was shooting on a grey background and color corrected a bit too much perhaps. Anyway the overall effect is "black on black"
 Size is a "medium-small" 7" (178 mm) inside circumference when buttoned up. The paracord materials compress quite easily and in doing so impart a stiffness to the fabric. This bracelet started out almost 3" wide and compressed to about 2" after the cross stitching was tensioned.
The ribs are bound together with the stitching that holds the rows of glass beads. the design is based on the ethnic cuffs from Pakistan and Afghanistan  tribal cultures. Look for this item in the fiber art design section of my Etsy online marketplace soon.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 24, 2012

beaded green cuff with three button toggle 2482

 One of the design features of many cuff style bracelets is the clasp or buttons that hold the bracelet closed. This design makes a big deal out of this detail by using three buttons and loops in an interlocking pattern. The bracelet is made from cord segments and glass beads that have been laid out and drawn up into highly textured fabric. Extra lengths of the framing cords were used to form the loops that flip over the buttons.
 Three small buttons are stitched into the framing cords with four ply nylon thread. This assembly is done on a mold to ensure that the buttons and loops placement are coordinated. The loops are made snug but not tight to allow for the addition of more cords and beads. Then the cross stitching is done with the nylon thread. The assembly is left in a relaxed condition while all the cross threads are placed.

Here you can see the position of the three loops and buttons in the finished bracelet.
Two of the loops thread inside the larger third loop in an overlapping pattern. The natural pressure on the inside of the bracelet makes the loops settle under the buttons which makes it more secure.

This bracelet will be available in an upcoming boutique sale. Check Finch's Holiday Time Boutique for details, place and time or visit the fiber art section of my Etsy shop to see some other designs similar to this one.
design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 22, 2012

1 button toggle leather bracelet with brown whipping 2488

 This design came about when I was rummaging around in my scrap box and came across a few pieces of this versatile 2 mm leather lacing. These pieces were too short for making the adjustable chokers so what to do? The buttons were out on my workbench for another project and the holes were exactly the correct size for the lacing.

Recently I reordered waxed cord from Brettun's Village in Maine and received some new brown waxed cord in addition to my regular colors. The brown complements the black leather adding a small bit of texture and is very stable when wrapped tightly.

The design is a simple double loop with a relaxed shape. The leather lacing is bunched and wrapped tightly with the waxed cord using a simple coach whipping technique that buries the looped ends inside the wrapping by pulling on the loose ends on the opposite side, subject of a future tutorial.

This is a "large" size 8 1/2" (216 mm) but these can be made-to-order in any size you like.
Here's a detail of the waxed cord wrapping. In addition to the texture this extra bulk gives the bracelet a bit of shape and stiffness.

See these designs in the newly re-named slender leather knots section of my Etsy shop.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 19, 2012

grey paracord turks head knot bracelet 2470

 550 paracord is a popular material for crafters including the survival bracelet market (can't survive without a nylon bracelet? - nice!). This design is not intended to be unraveled in an emergency but it does make a stylish accessory.

This is a silver grey color cord available from u-braid-it braiding supply company. I buy from them because they offer great customer service and quick shipping.
 This bracelet is a 12 x 5 x 3 design made from a double diamond pattern. This requires the use of a mold to hold the cords in place while the knot is developed. The double diamond pattern is too complex to be tied "in-the-hand" the way some of these turks heads are done.

My bracelets are NOT pre-shrunk but are made with new cord materials. This means that you can buy a larger size and expect the bracelet to shrink on your wrist. This example is 7 1/2" (191 mm) circumference just off the mold.
Paracord will shrink approximately 10% to 12% when wet and will take a "set" once it has been immersed in water.  This is the inner filler fibers shrinking, not the outer braided sheath. Repeated wettings will result in a bit more shrinkage each time until the material has reached equilibrium.

See more of these paracord bracelets in the paracord section of my Etsy shop.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 16, 2012

red and grey beaded primitive tribal cuff bracelet 2483

Highly textured cotton cords bound tightly together with rows of seed beads forms this contemporary interpretation of tribal style. The framing cord is hand dyed a medium cool grey which offsets the red center cords and the red beads sewn in around the edges. Dark blue and black accents highlight the reds for a bit of contrast.

The cotton materials are soft and comfortable. Size is a "medium" about 7 1/2" (191 mm) inside circumference when closed.
 A pair of loops and buttons makes a secure but easy to manage closure system. The bracelet is made from up cycled segments of hand dyed cotton cord that are arranged on a mold then sewn together with four ply nylon thread. Glass beads are worked into the edges in the seams.

The nylon thread stretches during the construction and holds tension on the fabric so the bracelet has as semi-rigid form and inherent shape.

This piece will be offered in an upcoming boutique sale. Check Finch's Holiday Time Boutique for details, place and time or visit the fiber art section of my Etsy shop to see some other designs similar to this one.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 14, 2012

red beaded rope bracelet 2481

 This beaded cuff bracelet is made with bleached clothesline cord a couple of plastic buttons and a handful of glass beads. The outer two rows are a mix of red and clear beads with a few mixed colors that look like cat's eye marbles. The center is a collection of orange, amber, and purple. All these are real glass so they catch the light.
 The design has this offset loop and button closure system which you can see in the photo. This makes it easy to take on and off. When closed the size is a "medium" measuring 7 1/2" (191 mm) inside circumference. The large number of glass beads makes this a nice hefty weight which you will notice when you are wearing this cuff.

Construction is with four ply waxed nylon thread so everything is secure but flexible to wear comfortably.

This piece will be offered in an upcoming boutique sale. Check Finch's Holiday Time Boutique for details, place and time or visit the fiber art section of my Etsy shop to see some other designs similar to this one.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 12, 2012

soft cotton beaded cuff rope bracelet 2480

 I find I'm having a bit more time after a big rush of orders to make another of these unique cuffs. This one is made with super soft almost plush cotton piping cord along with some of the hand dyed cord scraps lurking in the bottom of the scrap bin. Reduce, reuse, recycle...rinse repeat.

The outside edges are rimmed with a blue and green mix of glass seed beads that are worked into the seams of the cotton piping cord.
 Two large off white plastic buttons and loops make this secure and are easy to manipulate. The bracelet opens up at the loops and is a 7 1/2" (191 mm) inside circumference when closed.

The look is BIG but the materials are feather light and very soft to the touch. A bit of the tribal style made in new materials. This cuff is 1 7/8" (46 mm) wide and will really stand out.
This piece will be offered in an upcoming boutique sale. Check Finch's Holiday Time Boutique for details, place and time or visit the fiber art section of my Etsy shop to see some other designs similar to this one.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 9, 2012

under the sea beaded cord bracelet 2471

 Made from small segments of hand dyed cotton cord, seed beads, and a button this bracelet recalls the ocean with a mix of blue "bubble" beads in the waves.

The cord segments are cut offs from the making of turks head knot bracelets. The turks head bracelets are made with a longer piece of cord, then drawn up to a finished shape leaving a few inches of material which goes into the scrap box.
 The construction process starts with the heaver cord shown on the edges which is looped over a mold and tied off. A button is added to hold the loop. The colored cords are laid inside the heavier outer cord and held in place with long needles.

A four ply nylon thread is then passed back and forth through the cords and beads. After it has been placed  the thread is drawn up tight compressing the cord strands. The loose ends are buried and trimmed off.
You can find this design and more of these unique bracelets in the fiber art design section of my Etsy shop.

This example is a smaller size measuring just 7 1/2" inside circumference when the button is placed in the loop.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

November 5, 2012

decoding the knot: bights x parts x strands knot 2467

  To count the parts on a turks head knot follow one part as it crosses the face of the knot and count the number of "over" and "under" crossings. In this example you can count five crossings and add the one you are following for a total of six.

This design is a "diamond pattern" shown in the Ashley Book of Knots on p. 241, pattern #1350

Homework: why does Ashley call this a diamond pattern? Leave a comment with your answer below.

 To count the bights on a turks head knot count the number of places where the cord changes direction on the rim. In this example there are 17 bights.

This design is described as being between a "square" and a "narrow" turks head. It was made to be 7 5/8" (194 mm) inside circumference a comfortable size for a stylish nautical bracelet.

The number of strands or passes is three. The design can be described as a 17 x 6 x 3 corresponding to the number of bights x number of parts x number of strands.

design and photographs © copyright 2012 WhatKnotShop

October 26, 2012

Painting the night sky collection on Etsy

This collection title Painting the Night Sky was made by Tanya from Ukraine who has an Etsy  shop Freyja Toys filled with Original knitted dolls, crochet jewelry and home decor. Connect with her on FACEBOOK or PINTEREST

The signature item is this striking original photograph Painting the Night Sky made by Joel Robison available in his shop boywonder where he keeps more whimsical images than you have wall space to hang.

Another very spacey photo yellow flower bud night stars moon made by Julie who observes the world through her lens with patience revealing the beauty all around...the shop is BokehEverAfter Owl & Nature Photography Prints Slow down and take a look.

The featured item in this collection is this ombré blue white nylon turks head knot bracelet which has been made from de-cored nylon cord (makes it more flexible and soft) and then dip-dyed to create the shaded color. Just the right accessory for those stargazing nights. More like this in my Etsy shop in the blended color section.