Vintage 50’s Necklace With A Kumihimo Twist



Designed by Carmi Cimicata for John Bead Corp and Perles et Cetera Winter 2016 Issue. This is the English translation of the step by step that appeared in French in the current issue of the Magazine.

Kumihimo Kumihimo

This simple kumihimo disk has become the most loved tool in my studio. Made of foam, it is surprisingly sturdy. Kumihimo is an ancient braiding technique. Today, the classic 8-strand braid is easy to create with a variety of stringing materials. Most kumihimo disks come with instructions for this braid. Rattail is usually included because it the most common string used by kumihimo designers. It braids easily and is available in a wide selection of colours and several thicknesses.


I love the 8-strand braid and have tested it with virtually every stringing material I have in my stash.   Thick and thin lengths of cording combine to create the most elegant braids. They look complicated and unique. This really appeals to me as a designer.


To create the three tiered necklace I set up three completely different braids. My disk looked different each time. For one braid I used Neo Chain and classic kumihimo polyester rattail.


My second braid features several different thicknesses of cotton wax cord.


The third braid is especially unique with one extra thick piece of Nappa leather cord, soutache cord, cotton wax cord and rattail.


The color palette for these braids was influenced by the announcement of the 2016 Pantone Color of the year. This is the first time they have selected two colours; Rose Quartz and Serenity.


2016 Pantone Color(s) of the Year.


I glued my three braids into a special large kumihimo end cap. I made sure to let this cure overnight before adding my lobster clasp in order to ensure that the three braids were permanently in place.


I think the necklace looks lovely on it’s own. The chain I added to one of the braids adds a tiny bit of glitter.


However, what is life without a little extra embellishment? As a jewelry lover I also have quite a few of these vintage brooches in my collection.


I added this over the top rhinestone brooch and felt quite satisfied with the final necklace. The brooch is in place with just its pin back, so it is easy to remove, replace or switch out for a different color.


Here is how the necklace appears in the current issue of Perles Et Cetera.

Products Used from John Bead Corp.

Kumihimo Circle Disk

Dazzle-it Rattail

Dazzle-it Cotton Wax Cord

Metal Complex Napa Leather

Kumihimo End Cap #23820105-01

Lobster Claw

Quick Grip Glue

More Information

If you go to you will see over sixty posts I have written featuring kumihimo.

If you would like to see a video demonstrating the classic 8-strand technique go to this link.

Hot Pink Kumihimo Bracelet

This hot pink kumihimo bracelet showcases several Dazzle-it stringing options.

I used hot pink soutache, rattail, faux suede lace and waxed cotton cords.

Together the cords looked very nice on my kumihimo disk.

The finished braid is fabulous!  I used our kumihimo end cap set to finish my project.


Rainbow Kumihimo Bracelet

This kumihimo bracelet was inspired by something similar I viewed on Facebook last week.  It reminded me that the rainbow rattail is the ideal cord to use for beginner projects.  You achieve the look of a complex pattern with virtually no work.

We have the rainbow rattail available on spools and bobbins.  There is also a bright rainbow and a pastel colour version.  Sizes range from 1mm to 3mm.  I am using the 2mm for this project.

The rainbow colours makes the most beautiful braid!  This is the standard 8-strand braid you see in our instruction booklet that comes with your kumihimo disk.

Before I glued in my end caps, I added one of our new butterfly pendant bails.  It made adding my dangles easy and the bail itself is just beautiful on its own.

Here is a closer look at the bail.

The semi-precious skull beads have always been a colourful addition to anything I add them to.


John Bead also has a chain tassel group that I selected my dangle from.


Kumihimo Jewelry

This kumihimo necklace and bracelet was created with a combination of stringing materials.

I used our classic kumihimo rattail, our Lovely Knots cord and some home dec embellished strands normally used for pillow making.

You can create a kumihimo braid with so many unusual fibers.

If you make a long enough braid you can make sets of jewelry.

These unique hook and eye end caps make finishing your edges super quick.  Just glue in your kumihimo braid and wear!

The end caps are also available in gold and gunmetal.

My Instant Glam Tuscany bezel by Fernando DaSilva is now beautifully showcased on this “designed to match” kumihimo braid.

Thick Kumihimo Braids

This new choker kumihimo braid is so lovely it does not require the addition of a pendant.

I used Dazzle-it rattail and cotton waxed cord for the main colours.  The super thick pink and brown braid I bought in a fabric store…it is meant to be used for curtain tie-backs.

Because the finished braid was so thick, I only partially inserted into the kumihimo disk slits.

The reason I wanted to make a thick braid was because we have extra large end caps sets.


I added a little Quick Grip glue to my braid edges and inserted them into the end cap where they dried perfectly in place.  Kumihimo braids can be made with so many different types of fibers.  There are many samples already on this blog in the KUMIHIMO category.


Unfinished Kumihimo Projects

This tiered necklace is a collection of different strands.

It began with two unfinished Fernando DaSilva braids.

Fernando DaSilva is our Product Development & Creative Manager.  He makes so many samples!  I could just follow him around picking up leftovers.  These two pieces he whipped up and didn’t have time to finish, so I swooped them up!

The green and black beaded braid was too small for a necklace and too big for a bracelet, so I decided to incorporate it into a tiered necklace.  I made one extra 8-strand kumihimo braid to pull my idea together. The Dazzle-it rattail colour selection is so great!  I can usually match any colour palette.

I have shown you many time how easy it is to finish a kumihimo braid with our end caps and Quick Grip glue.

My braid simply frames Fernando’s beautifully beaded sample.

I then added the gold chain to complete the project.  Wait till you see what I am making with the second sample!  I’ll post it next week!

Astral Pink and Instant Glam Show Stopper

This is a serious piece of eye candy from Fernando DaSilva!

Everything I love is in this necklace.  We have a kumihimo braid and fiber embellishments created with Dazzle-it rattail, new end caps, a Metal Complex Instant Glam Bezel, our summer sensation semi-precious peace symbol beads and best of all; Astra Pink Swarovski Elements floating on a bed of clear resin.

Let’s take a closer look.

The Metal Complex Instant Glam “Quattro” silver bezel is showcasing a collection of Astral Pink Swarovski crystals.  They are suspended in place because Fernando placed them on a layer of Jewelry Resin.

The pink and yellow rattail looks fabulous in both the braid and knotted elements. You can see how Fernando is using some of the Chinese knots from his book to create new embellishments.

The peace beads are semi precious and were launched by Dazzle-it this spring.

Metal Complex Instant Glam “Quattro” bezel.

Crystal Astral Pink Bicones

Crystal Astral Pink Wild Heart

Crystal Astral Pink Twist Bead

Our new End Caps are beautifully featured in this closure.  Fernando always makes his necklaces look gorgeous even in areas that may not be seen.

Kumihimo and Agate Slabs

Agate slabs or slices are a wonderful addition to a summer necklace.  These semi precious slices are available in many colours and ordinarily feature a pre drilled hole making them easy to add to a project.

My kumihimo braid features two of our Dazzle-it rattail colours and sea blue cotton wax cord.

I used the classic eight strand braiding technique that you receive with our Dazzle-it Disk instructions.

When you make a braid you will find it very helpful if you add a weight to the end.  It will help pull and keep your braid tight and straight while you work.

My finished braid looks wonderful!

I finished the ends with our Kumihimo endcaps.

I added a simple gold chain to lengthen my cord and this became ready to wear!