Leather Kumihimo and Instant Glam Arrow

I have designed many kumihimo braids this year using different stringing materials and fibers.  My husband is always quite interested in the results and it occurred to me that I should try and make a kumihimo braid that he might wear.

This braid uses lots of different leathers and our traditional black rattail.

 When I set up my kumihimo disk I knew that two of the leathers were going to be too thick for the slots….but surprising, by just placing them on the edge of the disk they stayed securely in place during the braiding.

I used black suede lace, black braided bolo cord, 1mm leather cord, 1.5mm black rattail and black glossy fish leather for this project.

 John Bead has new and extra large end caps.  My braid was very thick and these new caps finished the ends beautifully.  Quick Grip glue was used to attachment the leather braid to the end cap.

I made a photocopy of my Instant Glam Arrow bezel so that I could cut a piece of fish leather which would fit this unique shape.  I then used Quick Grip again to glue my fish leather to my bezel.

These pewter toggles really look amazing.  They are a great weight and I felt like they gave my finished necklace a “manly” feel.

Here is a closer look at this nautical themed set.

My leather kumihimo and Instant Glam necklace is ready to wear!

Kumihimo With Many Types of Stringing Material

My agate slab pendant is the inspiration for this kumihimo cord made with rattail, hemp, suede lace and cotton waxed cord.

The colours in the pendant are just stunning.

I gathered all the stringing material that would highlight the colours the best and set up my kumihimo round braid disk for a lovely hour of braiding.

I used Agate Slab Pendant with Pewter/Turquoise Setting

Sea Blue Cotton Wax Cord

Sea Green Suede Lace

Aqua Blue Dazzle-It Rattail

Silver Dazzle-It Rattail

Pastel Colours Dazzle-It Hemp

The suede lace was a wonderful new addition for me.  I did break the strand at one point and was happy a small knot could repair it so the braiding continued.

When my braid was the length I wanted I tied each edge.

I used my favorite new glue to attach a 7mm kumihimo end cap.  This cord is thinner than others I have made, so I am happy there are three different sizes of end caps to choose from.

You will love all the Agate slabs in the John Bead collection.

5-Strand Mystery Braid Bracelet

Yesterday I showed you how to make Suzi’s magic bracelet.  On Suzi’s blog post she had a link to the 5 Strand Mystery Braid Bracelet.  Hmmm. Magic was great…might as well try the mystery!  Suzi posted a link to a YouTube video that I immediately thought was way too hard.  I watched and watched and just could not make the necessary twists…..so I called in Nancy, who understood the concept immediately and helped me to make this fabulous bracelet.

You do have to watch the video.  I have no idea who the mathematical geniuses are who come up with these twisting ideas.  Basically, this strip of suede…with no open ends can be braided into this shape.

I used our new pink ultra suede cuff and was able to cut the openings with ease using a rotary trimmer.

I trimmed my corners and used the Crystal Applicator Tool (for Swarovski Snaps) to make this closure.  The SILVER/TRANSPARENT/CRYSTAL snap is perfect because it still shows the pink suede behind it.

What can I say?  I love it!  The bracelet even curled a little over night and now it looks even better!  Lightweight and the ideal suede to wear this summer!

Magic Braid

I always thought these bracelets were made with three seperate peices of leather or suede.  I know how to braid…I figured it would be easy. Then, I popped by Suzi’s Crafts and found her tutorial for the magic braid! It is magic!

Genius is a better name for the braid!

So I sliced two openings into my gray suede cuff strip.  These cuffs are new at John Bead and I have already made many different samples for this blog.

I won’t lie, it took several attempts to figure out how to do the braid….

Since both ends are still flat they can easily be finished with a metal ribbon end.

Isn’t it super?  Thank you to Suzi for posting the “how-to.”

How To Showcase a Leather Crimp

I made this sweet choker over the weekend.

I have been wanting to twist some wire flowers for a while and was not having much success with the final shapes.  Dazzle-It Aluminum wire is ideal for learning how to wire wrap.

Then it occurred to me that I might have more luck if I used a wig jig!

I really liked my new looped wire flowers!

This post was originally designed to showcase the leather crimps at John Bead!  They simple fold over the end of leather to create a very finished end.  I used Sea Green goat suede to finish my necklace.

A little crimping, some wire twisting and my choker was done!

My inspiration.  I saw this cute car antiquing this weekend and thought the colours were classic!

Goat Suede – Simply Braided

From the minute I got this sea green coloured goat suede I wanted to do something special with it.

The goat suede is so soft.  I opted to add some matching sea blue cotton wax cord to the braid to give it a little more strength.  You might see the cord in the picture above.  To start the braid I attached a nickle ribbon/cord end.

When I finished my braid I thought it still needed a little something extra.  Happily I found these matching square turquoise beads in my John Bead stash.

Oh, and here is a little tip I found online this week.  Do you struggle to get bracelets on by yourself? I do.

Just use this handy paper clip idea!



John Bead has every possible lobster clasp you might need.

I hope you get a chance to experiment with the goat suede soon!

Goat Suede as a Pendant

Since I started working with the new goat suede (I have 5 of ten colour options) I have accumulated a small bag of left over pieces. The suede is available in 3.5 or 5 ml widths.

I decided to do something with those leftovers.  I used silver leather crimps to finish the edges.  These crimps fold over perfectly.

I used one large jump ring to gather all my finished pieces.

For the necklace I used the black goat suede with some very beautiful components to complete my project.  1. Heart Crimp and 2. Pewter hook and loop clasp.

I have a fun and very lightweight necklace now.  Imagine if I add some bead, feathers and other components.  Goat suede is a wonderful stringing material but it stands alone too.

Braided Goat Suede and Leather Cord

This bracelet features one of the really great colours of goat suede now available at John Bead.  This is the light brown.

I was inspired to make it when I came across a simple tutorial on a blog called //between the lines//. I did my braiding on a handy cute clipboard.

The tutorial on the blog I linked to is for crafters only and not meant for commercial use.   I thought it was great that they were helping people to learn how to work with leather in such a great way.

The basic wrap around braid is showcased in hundreds of samples.  My braid shows off the black leather cord I chose to work with.

I also finished my bracelet with some gorgeous components as opposed to simple knots.  The patterned pewter end caps by JBB, were ideal to finish my ends before adding the hook and loop clasp.

Braiding leather is relaxing!  With or without components and tools!