My twelve-year-old cousin sent me a friendship bracelet for Christmas. It was different than the kind I used to make but still took me back to look at!
I guess I thought of friendship bracelets as a nineties thing but maybe they are an adolescent girl thing and it’s just that I was that age in the nineties. The bracelet my cousin made was more round and thick than I remember being popular but fashions do change – even those made of string. I did not see her working on it but our grandmother told me that she had some sort of tool which she uses to weave the strands in and out. My first thought was “kids, today!” I guess that is one of the things that marks me as getting old. In my day, we used our fingers and a safety pin to hold the strands in place.
I decided to make a bracelet for my young cousin and send it in response. After several days of not going to the craft store, I decided to just see what I had lying around. Once upon a time (the nineties) I had so many colors of embroidery floss that I had a box just to hold and organize it. I remember thinking how very decadent it was to have storage like that just for a craft item. Ha! If only adolescent me could see the yarn and fabric storage I have now. Of course, the shelves, drawers, and totes I have are nothing compared to my mother’s studio and its walk-in closet. My mother bought the DMC branded floss box for me when some local craft store was going out of business and I thought it was the best thing ever; I obviously had not yet discovered Alpaca. It turns out that I did have a couple of skeins of floss mixed in with my yarn stash (with the 100% cotton of course) so I set about making a bracelet for my cousin.
Just like nineties-me, I totally guessed how much floss to cut for the project then carefully made sure all of the colors were the same length. I tied a loop in the top (the better to fasten it with) and safety-pinned it to my knee. The first thing I learned is that jeans are way better for this sort of thing than yoga pants but I wasn’t about to get up out of my recliner and change my pants just for this purpose. I found that pulling the pants taut and bending my knee to an acute angle did a decent job of holding the bracelet in place as I got to work.
I’ve never been able to keep my rows neat and pretty but I think I did the trick overall and as I always did, I finished it off with two tails to make fastening through the loop as easy as possible. I learned this from a book [what feels like] a very long time ago but there are lots of tutorials on the internet now, even videos to show how to make bracelets. A cursory googling turned up this tutorial for the style of bracelet I made although I used six strands and my diagonal goes the opposite way. I actually have never been able to do the very simple knot used for this bracelet in the other direction. I don’t know if it feels too left-handed or if I just got too used to the way I do it or what. Maybe I do need one of those boards like the kids get now. Anyway, because of this deficiency, I was never able to make the chevron bracelets which were so popular in my youth. A part of me wants to go buy more floss and try again. Another part of me wonders what the heck I would do with bracelets once I made them. I only have so many teenage cousins!