Learn How to Make Friendship Bracelets Step-By-Step

Thinking about giving your friends a small token of your affection? Maybe you can make them earrings or knit them a beautiful scarf. Or… give this a try! Nothing says “friends forever” better than friendship bracelets. Creating friendship bracelets is not only a fun DIY craft project, but it is also easy to learn and share with your friends as well. 

Children wearing friendship bracelets and holding hands

From summer camps to sleepovers, making bracelets is one of the “rites of passage” activities that everyone loves. Whether you loved making bracelets as a kid or if you are learning how to make friendship bracelets for the first time, this simple bracelet tutorial will teach you all you need to know.

Why we love them so much

Friends are integral to our physical and mental wellbeing. From being there for us in our joys to holding us together in tough times, friends are our support system. They make our lives meaningful with their presence. 

Friendship bracelets are a time-old symbol of friendship. According to folklore, when you place a bracelet on the wrist of your friend, it is not only a symbol of the everlasting bond between you but you can also wish for something at that magical instant.

Once the bracelet falls off after some time, it is said that the wish you made will come true. A bracelet is a meaningful gift that honours the love, energy, and time we put into our friendships. We can trace the origins of bracelet making back to Guatemala

Since we make them using forward knots, backward knots or double knots, they are a form of macrame. From birthdays to graduations, you can celebrate each moment by making beaded bracelets for your BFF!

The materials that you’re going to need

Easy friendship bracelets are fun to make and you don’t need a lot of things to get started. All you require is a bit of embroidery floss & something that will hold the bracelet as you make the forward knots

Set of multicolour buttons and yarns

Here are some of the tried and tested supplies.

  • String or embroidery floss
  • Masking tape
  • Safety pin
  • Scissors
  • Buttons
  • Letter beads
  • Charms

How to make a friendship bracelet step-by-step

So are you ready to find out how to make two different types of bracelets? Let’s get started!

Making friendship bracelet

DIY steps for candy stripe friendship bracelet pattern

Learn how to make your own bracelets and share them with your friends. The total crafting time is less than one hour. 

1. Measure your wrist

Cut a piece of floss and wrap it around your wrist (or your best friend’s, if possible). Mark the spot where the loose ends of the floss connected. Take the piece off your wrist and cut according to the measured length. This will give you approximately the length of your bracelet.

2. Measure the floss

Take one end of the floss between your fingers. Stretch your arm out and take the other end of the floss to your shoulder. Mark this distance and double the length. Since you are making a three-coloured bracelet, do this for all three colours.

3. Create the button closure

Take the three pieces of floss and hold them together firmly. Fold the three pieces in half. At the fold, create an overhand knot. You will have a small loop at the point where you are trying to tie the forward knot. This will act as the loop for your button. Tape the loop end down to the table. 

You will have six strands of floss. Arrange them in the colour order you want. If two strands of the same colour are adjacent to each other, you will have a wide band of that particular colour. The strand on the left will create the first row. Knot it over the other strands, from left to right.

4. Make the knots

Hold the left-most strand in your hand. Think of the 2nd strand as the straight line of number “4” and shape the first strand over the 2nd. It will go over the 2nd strand and then behind it. Hold the 2nd strand taut. Pull the 1st strand up and in the form of a loop. Keep pulling until you feel slight resistance. You will have a small knot on the 2nd strand. Tie the 1st strand around the second strand again and make another forward knot.

Keep moving from far left to right until you have created two knots on each strand using the first strand. Once you reach the last strand, start all over again. Remember, you have to make two knots on every strand. Once you reach the right measurement for your wrist, stop knotting

Woman making friendship bracelet

5. Add the button

Once you are done knotting, take any button that you like. Roll the ends of the strands together and slide them through the buttonhole. Slide three strands of embroidery floss through one hole and the remaining strands through the other hole. Tie the two sections of strands together in an overhand knot. If there is any leftover floss, trim it. 

Voila! Your work is done! Wrap the beautiful bracelet around your friend’s wrist and slide the button through the loop to secure it.

Small box with colourful buttons

DIY Steps for Chinese Ladder Friendship Bracelet Pattern

1. Choose the strands and cut them

Take embroidery floss of five different colours. You can make the bracelet with three strands as well, but it will end up very thin. Cut each about 35 to 40 cm in length and tie them together with a backward knot. The longer the strings are, the more flexible your design will be. Leave a few centimetres at the top since you will need this additional length to tie off the bracelet.

2. Create a loop with the first string

Take one strand of the floss and lay it across all the other pieces to make a loop. Create a shape of the number 4. Pull the string through the loop you have just created. Ensure that it is taut. Repeat the process with the same string. As you keep doing this, the floss will wrap itself all around and create a Chinese ladder.

3. Change the colour

You can change the colour by picking a strand of different colours and creating a loop using that piece of floss. Once you reach the desired length, tie a knot and cut off the remaining floss. This is all you have to do to create a Chinese ladder bracelet!

Colourful friendship bracelets

DIY craft tips

Now that you know how to make basic bracelets, here are some tips that will make the process a bit easier for you.

  1. Work at a table. Tape one end of the loop to the table and let the remaining floss hang off of the table in front of you.
  2. If you are going to take a break, tape the far left strand of the floss separate from the other strands. When you are ready to begin again, remove the tape and start knotting again.
  3. If the bracelet that you are making starts to curl, you have to lay it flat on the table and pull it nice and taut. 
  4. Once you are done, tape the bracelet to a flat surface. Spray the bracelet with water and let it dry. Once it dries, remove the tape. 

Close up of colourful friendship bracelets

From fancy diamond patterns to simple chevron friendship bracelets, the designs and ideas are endless! It is aν easy craft, and before you know it, you will have made an armful of colourful pieces once you go through our step-by-step tutorial on how to make your own friendship bracelets. Traditionally, friendship bracelets are made from embroidery thread. However, you can use all sorts of braiding materials – from leather cord to yarn, there are plenty of options. You can embellish the chevron pattern bracelet with tassels, rhinestones, etc. The choice is always yours!

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