Paracord Bracelet Instructions
Paracord bracelets are a neat bit of gear. If you're an outdoors type of person, or you want to make a gift for an outdoors type of person, then this is the project for you.
Each bracelet is in effect a miniature survival kit, holding 10 feet of 550 paracord. Use it to construct an emergency shelter, or repair your rucksack with the yarns in the central core.
Paracord Bracelet Materials (see docs for picture instructions)
You will need:
· 5 feet (1.5m) of paracord in one color
· 5 feet (1.5m) of paracord in another color*
· 2 1/2 feet (75cm) of paracord in whatever color
· Optional: needle and thread
Paracord Bracelet Instructions
Step 1 - Set Bracelet Size
Double over the 2 1/2 foot length of paracord, and tie a simple overhand knot an inch or two from the loose ends.
Check the size of the bracelet by putting the loop over the knot.
It's best to make the bracelet slightly loose. The band will become fatter and fit more tightly once it's finished. Don't worry too much about getting the size exactly right at this stage, because you'll have a chance to fine-tune it later.
Optional: For a sharper look and more secure closure, use a lanyard knot instead of a simple overhand knot; also known as the Chinese Button Knot
Don't worry about the loose ends poking out of the knot. Later on (step 4) I'll show you how to hide them.
Step 2 - Join Long Pieces Together
Skip this step if you're making a single-color paracord bracelet.
Join together the two longer pieces of paracord, using the method in the video below. I usually write my own instructions, but in this case someone else has already put together excellent instructions:
I like to reinforce the join by making a few stitches through it with needle and thread.
Don't worry if your join isn't the neatest, because it will be hidden on the inside of the bracelet. Just make sure that you melt down any scratchy edges, because the join will lie directly against your wrist.
Arrange the paracord pieces in a "t", with the long, joined piece behind the short piece. The join in the long piece should sit directly beneath the short piece.
Now comes a knot called cobra stitch, also known as a Solomon bar or Portuguese sinnet. Whatever you call it, it's pretty straightforward. First, you take the right arm of the "t" and throw it over to the left. Then feed the left strand through the loop made on the right. When you tighten the knot, leave about 1" (2.5cm) of loop a the top. Make your knots firm, but not too tight. (Too tight and the bracelet will be stiff and inflexible.)
Then make another cobra stitch that's a mirror image of the first one. It's exactly what you did for the first cobra stitch, but with left and right reversed. Continue adding more and more cobra stitches, alternating sides. You can bunch the stitches closer together by holding onto the overhand knot at the bottom of the bracelet, and pushing the cobra stitches up toward the loop at the top. Put something through the loop first (e.g. a ruler), to stop the stitches sliding right off the top. Keep adding cobra stitches until you get to within about 1/2" (1cm) of the granny knot.
Optional: Use needle and thread to fasten the end-most cobra-stitch (red) to the central core of paracord (black), at the position of the green arrow. This stops the cobra-stitches from sliding along the central core, and makes sure that the 1" loop at the end stays the correct size.
Put the bracelet around your wrist and check the fit. Adjust the position of the overhand knot to make the bracelet tighter or looser.
Step 4 - Tidy Up Loose Ends
After checking that your bracelet is the right size, it's time to snip off all the loose ends. You'll have two loose ends from the overhand knot, and two loose ends from the cobra stich. Pick one loose end to start with. Cut it short, to leave about 1/4" (5 mm) poking out of the bracelet. Melt this end with a lighter, and press on the molten end with a wet finger (or the flat edge of a knife). This stops it fraying. Also, by pressing on the end, you squash it into a sort of mushroom shape, which stops it working loose. Just be careful not to burn your fingers! Repeat for the other loose ends.
Lanyard Knot Tying Instructions:
- Hold the rope in your hand using your pinky to stabilize
- With the working end, form an underhand loop
- The standing end becomes your new working end and wraps around the old working end and under the itself in the center of the loop.
- As you’re bringing the last coil past the top, form a bight in the working part
- Leave the knot loose and pull your pinky out from the knot, leaving a diamond pattern in the center of your knot
- Thread the standing end counter clockwise through the underside of the created diamond pattern
- Repeat this step for the working end as well
- *Now both ends should have been fed though the underside of the diamond*
- Grasp the working and standing ends and pull (you should still have a bight around your fingers)
- Slide the knot off of your fingers and continue pulling on the bight and the ends to tighten
- Clean up the knot by pulling individual strands.
See Chinese Button Knot tutorial