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How to Make Friendship Bracelets

Learn how to make friendship bracelets in 2 different methods. This is a perfect DIY project for teens and adults.

friendship bracelets on arm

There’s something so fundamentally wholesome about DIY bracelets. It brings to mind warm summer afternoons when we were just tweens, doesn’t it? I used to forever be on the hunt for the next DIY bracelet, whether it was made out of shoelaces, thread, or paracord. 

diy friendship bracelet

Friendship bracelets made out of embroidery floss was—is—an all-time favorite. Maybe it’s time to revive those pretty bracelets, only now, let’s up the ante with a pretty charm or medallion!

bracelets hanging on display

Watch on Youtube: How to Make Friendship Bracelets

Supplies and Tools You’ll Need

Here’s a list of everything you’ll need for this fun project:

  • Chopping board
  • Embroidery threads
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Bulldog clip
  • Buttons

craft supplies

How to Make Friendship Bracelets

There are two ways you can make these bracelets, the first being the three-strand or three-string bracelet, and the second is the 4-strand bracelet. Take a look!

How to Make a 3 String Friendship Bracelet?

Here is a full tutorial!

Step 1

The first step is to measure out your embroidery cords and cut three cords, each 45 inches long. You can cut different colors of embroidery cords or just stick to one single color- it’s up to you!

thread and ruler

measuring thread

three strands of thread

Step 2

Fold the three cords in half and form a loop at the top.

loop of thread

Then, make a regular knot at the top, about half an inch from the loop. Your knotted loop should look like this.

loop tied at end of thread

Step 3

You remember when you used exam pads back in school? Well, grab one of those, with a clip at the top. Carefully clip the threads in place, clasping the cords just above the knot.

clipping down threads

Step 4

Now, fan out all six of your cords. If you’ve used different colors, then sort them so that the cords on the left mirror the three on the right side as well(3-2-1-1-2-3).

seperating threads

Step 5

Grab the first cord on the left—you will be using this as the leading cord for this row. Now, pull it over the second cord and form a 4-shaped loop, as seen here.

folding thread

folding thread

Then, pull the first cord under the second cord and through the loop.

wrapping thread around finger

pulling thread through

You can use your forefinger to help you hold the loop in place while you pull the cord through.

tying knot in thread

Now, tighten the first cord, and you’ll have a knot. Pull the cord(and the knot) up and towards the main knot on top.

pulling thread

tightening thread

pulling thread

You’ll notice that the leading cord is now in the place of the second cord.

holding next thread

Just continue to recreate this knot using the leading cord all the way across the remaining five cords.

finished line of knots

Step 6

Next, grab the first loop on the left again. If you remember, this used to be the second cord on the left. You will now use it as the leading cord and make another set o knots all the way across, right under the row you previously made.

holding next color

You know the drill. Just use the leading cord to form a loop. Then, use your forefinger to hold the loop in place while you pull it over the second cord, under it, and then through the loop, tugging the knot all the way up.

tying knot

tying knot

tightening thread

tightening thread

Repeat this with the next cord and the next, all the way across.

holding two threads

holding blue thread

holding next threads

tying knot

finished row of knots

Step 7

For the third row, grab the cord on the left—this used to be the third cord, remember?

holding next color

Work a row of knots across all five cords.

finished row of knots

Step 8

Keep moving down the rows, making a set of 6 knots per row. You can also make two rows if you like if you knot one color twice. Feel free to experiment as you work your way down the bracelet. 

more completed rows

To measure how long you need the length to be, just loop it around your wrist.

measuring bracelet on wrist

To fasten off, just make a single knot using all six cords. Tug the cords until the knot sits right under the last row.

tying knot in bracelet

bracelet on wrist

completed bracelet

Step 9

You can accessorize your bracelet with charms, beads, and buttons.

holding buttons

Pull the button through two cords, as indicated here.

attaching button

Now, make a knot and tighten it to secure it.

tying knot on button

tying knot

If your button has a little handle, like the one you see here, then just insert three strands through and make a knot to secure the button in place.

button on thread

tying button on with knot

Then, put the three strands back into the loop and make another knot. This should keep the button in place!

knot on button

tying knot on button

knot on button

How to Make a 4 String Bracelet

Now that you know how to make a three-strand knot, you can move on to work on a 4-strand knot. You’ll notice that this bracelet has a v-shaped pattern going all the way down. So take a look at how you can make it!

completed friendship bracelet

Step 1

Take your different colors of embroidery cords—black, blue, grey, and white, as you see below. Cut each of those cords to measure 60 inches.

embroidery thread and ruler

4 strands of thread

Step 2

You know how to make the looped knot, so go ahead and make it and clip the threads in place on your clipboard.

Divide the eight cords so that the four cords on the left mirror the four on the right(blue-black-grey-white-white-grey-blue-black).

seperating threads

Step 3

You’ll be using the same technique you used earlier to make your rows of knots. Grab the outermost knot on the left and make three knots down the row till you reach the middle.

tying knot

holding thread

Step 4

When you’re done with the cords on the left, move to the right and take the first cord on the right.

holding other side of thread

Pull the leading cord over the second one to form a loop. Then, using your finger to hold the loop in place, pull the cord under the latter and through the loop.

tying knot on other side

Work your way down to the middle, just like you did with the cords on the left.

tying knot

You can loop the leading cord around the cords twice if you want two rows of knots.

tying knot

tying thread

Step 5

When both your leading cords make their way down to the middle, you’ll notice that you have a V-shaped row.

tying center knot

Just use the cord on the right as the leading cord and loop it around the left cord twice to finish this row.

tying thread

completed knot

crossing threads

holding outer threads

You’ll notice that the cords on the left and right are mirrored once more and that you have a pretty v-shaped row of knots. Go ahead and finish up the rest of the bracelet and accessorize if needed.

seperated threads

Ta-da! Your friendship bracelets look fabulous, don’t they?

completed friendship bracelets

How to Flatten Curled Friendship Bracelets?

You’ll find that your friendship bracelets tend to curl up a little, especially when they aren’t that wide and have just a few rows. Don’t fret, though, because you can definitely straighten them out.

One way to straighten them is to block the bracelets with water. Just wet your fingertips and pat the bracelet with the droplets. Then, place the bracelet between two paper towels and place a heavy book on top of it as it dries.

Alternatively, you can use a flat iron or a straightener to iron the bracelets. Make sure you don’t scorch the threads, though. Lay a thin towel over the bracelet before you run an iron over it.

bracelet on wrist

What to Do if I Run Out of String?

If you run out of thread halfway through your DIY project, you can always attach another cord. Grab a new string of the same color. Instead of knotting with the short cord, just slide the new string in place and proceed to make your knots using the new cord.

You can always just blend the short cord into the project as you go or snip it off later.

completed bracelets

Other Crafts You Might Like

Yield: a friendship bracelet

How to Make Friendship Bracelets

how to make friendship bracelets

A simple but fun DIY accessory. Learn how to make friendship bracelets and enjoy crafting.

Active Time 40 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Difficulty Easy
Estimated Cost $1

Materials

  • Embroidery threads
  • Buttons

Tools

  • Chopping board
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Bulldog clip

Instructions

Gather all your supplies to begin working on your bracelets.

Method 1: 3-strand bracelet

  1. Cut three cords of different colors, each 45” long.
  2. Fold the cords in half to form a loop. Then, gather all six cords and make a knot about half an inch from the top.
  3. Clip the cords in place on a clipboard and then sort them so that the three cords on the left mirror the three cords on the right.
  4. Grab the first cord on the left—the leading cord—and pull it over the second cord to form a loop. Hold the loop in place with your forefinger and bring the leading cord under the second cord, then through the loop.
  5. Pull the knot up and secure it right below the loop knot. Go ahead and work a set of four more such knots across the row.
  6. You can loop the leading cord around the cords twice to make two subsequent rows at the same time.
  7. To measure the length, simply loop the bracelet around your wrist. When you’re happy with the length, just pull all six strands into one single knot and tighten it to secure all the ends.
  8. You can also attach a button at this point. Just separate the six cords into two sets of three cords each. Then pull three strands through the button loop and use the remaining three to make a double knot to secure the button in place.


Method 2: 4-strand bracelet

  1. Go ahead and cut four cords, each 60” long. Make the looped knot and secure it to your clipboard.
  2. Sort the cords with the cords on the left side mirroring the right.
  3. You will be following the same technique of looping and knotting your cords with a leading cord. Only this time, you’ll be working from both the left side and the right.
  4. Grab the first cord on the left and use it as a leading cord to make a set of three knots down to the middle.
  5. Next, grab the first cord on the right and make a reverse 4-shaped loop, and then proceed to knot the cords from the right all the way down to the middle.
  6. You’ll find that both the leading cords are right in the middle, and all that’s left to do to complete the first of your v-shaped row is to connect them. Use the right cord as the leading cord and make the knot.
  7. You can also loop and knot the leading cord twice to make two consecutive rows of the same color.
  8. Once you’re happy with the length of the bracelet, just fasten off with a single knot, same as you did earlier.
  9. Feel free to accessorize your 4-strand bracelet with buttons or charms!
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