I’m trying a new strategy this year, where I begin writing about my projects as soon as I’m doing them; to warm up, am posting some quick and simple projects to build back a habit. This post is about my new obsession with beadwork.
Since the summer of last year, I began to rediscover the joys of having beads; their applications range between stringed jewelry, to beaded embroidery, to decorating lanyards and keychains. I remember how I used to make beaded animals out of the plastic pony beads; nowadays I can appreciate the beads that are made out of stones, wood, and bones. I ended up buying a bunch of beads from various websites and stores; for this bracelet, I’m using synthetic amber, antique-style bone beads, and wooden beads.
After buying a ton of beads, I realized that I didn’t buy too many cords to string them; I found some round leather cord that was finished in a copper colour and decided to buy it. Searching for cordage had also sent me down another rabbit hole of knotwork crafts, which I intend to revisit in the future.
For the most part, stringing the beads onto the cord went as expected; however, when I realized that I wanted to make a drawstring at the end, I had to cut a larger piece of cord. I used a length that went fom my hand to my shoulder, and it only just turned out to be enough to work with. Some of the wooden beads needed to be cleaned out, so I used my manual drill tool to scrape out the splinters.
With the cord being 2mm in thickness, I did not expect the length to be so influenced by the knots I was using. Originally, I thought I would have it so that each bead was separated with an overhand knot; it didn’t look very neat, and it ate up a lot of cordage to do them. I found that the double fisherman’s knot, and the figure – 8 knot were the only stopper & termination knots that looked okay in this application. The double fisherman’s knot is also good to use as the drawstring mechanism; the card had so much friction, that one knot would allow it to slide and hold the bracelet. Two knots holding the cord would render the drawstring immobile.
Another thing to note was having to fit the knots in a way that looked somewhat symmetrical while allowing my hand to go through. I used the widest part of my hand to wrap the bracelet around, and held the place to tie the figure-8 knot of the sliding string; the double fisherman’s knot was simply knotted next to the other one that serves as a stopper for the beads. There was a lot of trial and error in this last stretch of the bracelet.
The resulting bracelet looks simple, with a deceptively – simple knotted termination; the takeaway from this project is that I enjoyed making it, and it didn’t have to be complicated to gain that sense of satisfaction. If I want to make things, I have to remember that it’s for my enjoyment in whatever form it may be; hopefully, I can keep this in mind so that all my other incoming ideas get a chance to be made.