Today I’ll show you how to make super-easy friendship bracelets. So easy, in fact, that you might not really need my help figuring out how to make them. (I can tell you now, almost two years after initially writing this how-to, that my teen daughter wore the leather bracelets we made here until they fell off from wear and tear. And that was many, many months later. So these bracelets are both easy to make and a big hit as well!)
But I do have one trick up my sleeve that I know you will want to learn – and that’s how to make one of those sliding knots so that you need no clasp, and so that the bracelet is adjustable for any size wrist. I learned this knot in college as a rock climber under it’s other name, the Double Fisherman’s Knot. I’ve also heard it called a Chinese Sliding Knot.
Either way, it’s one of the most handy knots you will ever learn to make – because the beauty of this knot is not just that it is adjustable, but also that the more you pull on it, the more it tightens itself.
How to Tie a Sliding Knot
The sliding knot diagram is easy to follow, but it can get a little tricky if you create the knot loosely and then tighten it sloppily. My advice: be really careful about keeping all the strands in place as you tighten it – trust me, it will save you plenty of headaches and tangled cording later.
Here’s a picture of the sliding knot in action on the back of the braided friendship bracelet.
What You Need to Make These Easy Friendship Bracelets
- Leather lacing (in at least three colors for the braided bracelet).
- Six wooden beads with bead holes big enough for the leather lace to fit through (for the beaded bracelet).
- You can also use colorful nylon cording instead of leather for either of these friendship bracelets.
For the beaded friendship bracelet, first cut the end of the leather lace at an angle, which will make it easier to slide on the beads. Then simply tie a regular knot, slide on a bead, and repeat until all the beads are on your bracelet.
Finish off with the sliding knot.
For the braided leather bracelet, knot together three strands of leather laces. Keep one of them longer than the rest on the top end, because you will use it to tie the bracelet off.
Braid the laces, then tie another knot to keep the braid together. Then simply clip off two of the three stands near the knot as shown in the first photograph below.
Finish off with the sliding knot.
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I loved this bracelet. I have been looking for some friendship bracelets to make for my bff but I never could find any. This was perfect! My best friend moved to Austin, TX. I live in Amarillo,TX. I wanted to make something to remind her of me and me of her. Thanks!
this is rele nice i am gonna try and make it
Your bracelet idea was so timely. I was on an active search to find a way to tie off my braided leather bracelet for a craft idea for 100+ children at Vacation Bible School, tonight! My role is a Jewess leather worker in the city of Rome. Had run across diagrams of the sliding knots but you have used the exact materials I am using. Thanks so much for the handy information; you have renewed my confidence in this endeavor! Many thanks!
Thank you so much. I was in search of crafts for church camp and found the friendship bracelets. What better craft for the kids to make and exchange than friendship bracelets.