Buttoning Up a Loom Woven Bracelet
With Directions for Making one of Your Own
I love to replicate other adornment styles and recreate them as beaded jewelry. I love the look of button bracelets done on Grosgrain ribbon and I'm always ready to warp the loom. I was seeing these bracelets everywhere last summer and decided I wanted one, but done in my own style.
So I hit upon the idea of loom weaving a bracelet strip to look like grosgrain, then adding the buttons to that. As this piece was coming together, I remembered these great pink white hearts I had gotten from the Beady Eyed Women at the bead show, and had to add them! I think it came out great, and love the "victorian" feel the colors give it. I specifically used the two colors of mauve for the strip, so it would project the shading you see in grosgrain ribbon. The buttons were chosen by my son, he saw them on a rack at the fabric store and told me they would be perfect, and he was right! I have trained him well!
So, here are the directions for making one of your own. Feel free to substitute any colors you choose, and if you do, send me a picture!
Here's what you'll need:
Loom that can be warped for 15/0 beads
Size "D" Nymo for warp and weft - I used white
Size "D" Nymo for edging - I used Dusty Pink
3 gm 15/0 Japanese seed beads - color #706
3 gm 15/0 Japanese Seed Beads - color #701A
100 Size 8/0 Whitehearts color 43 GB #12 Beading Needle
6 - La Mode Brand Buttons - Style #41200 12mm
2 - 16 mm bar clamps (General Bead part #MFD024)
2 - Silver Jump Rings
Silver Magnetic Clasp
Small piece of Co-Flex brand or other self clinging bandage material
1. Start by warping your loom for 15/0 beads, using 11 warp thread, for a width of 10 beads. Use white Nymo "D" thread for warping.
2. Make a loomed strip approx. 6 inches long (or 1 inch shorter than the desired wrist length, alternating rows of color #706 and #701A
3. When your strip is the desired length, use your Nymo "D" to weave a selvage at each end, approx. 5 mm wide.
4. Cut thread from loom and make a knot using two sets of warp threads, knotting close to the woven selvage, but do not pull too tight. Secure knots with a tiny drop of clear nail polish.
5. Trim all threads close to work. Cut a small piece of Co-Flex bandage (or other type of bandage material that will stick to itself and does not contain adhesive) and cover the ends of the strip. Push firmly on the bandaging material to make it stick. This will make a good padded base for attaching the gripper bars. Make sure no bandage material shows from under the bars.
6. Place the ends of the work into the gripper bars, and secure them using a pair of standard pliers and moderate pressure. Do not press too hard, and make sure that you do not catch any beads into the gripper. Do make sure that you have pressed hard enough to close the bars firmly. Repeat on the other end of the loomed strip.
7. Add an edging using the 8/0 whitehearts. Brick stitch them along the edge of the loomed strip, using the Dusty Pink Nymo "D" thread.
9. Attach the buttons by stitching up from the back of the strip and through one hole of the button. Add 8 size 15/0 beads in color #701A and stitch down through the second hole in the button. The holes should be aligned lengthwise on the loomed strip. Repeat for the remaining 5 buttons. Use the Dusty Pink Nymo "D" for this step, also.
10. Now, add the jump rings and magnetic clasps to each end of the gripper bar, and your new bracelet is ready to wear! Be sure to close the jump rings tightly, and make sure they can withstand the pull of the magnetic clasps.
That's all there is to it. Magnetic clasps are great, but do take care with them; the magnets are really strong. There have ben stories of people erasing removable media (discs and memory sticks) and picing up objects such as beading scissors and needles. Ive also heard one or two stories of these magnets causing watches to stop working. So make sure you won't beinadvertly causing yourself harm while wearing these little magnets. If you have any concerns, use a regular toggle clasp for this bracelet.
Have fun with this bracelet, I bet you'll get lots of compliments!