How to Braid String

Three Methods:Three-String BraidFour-String (Flat) BraidEight-String Braid

Braiding string creates a strong, thin thread for jewelry or other crafts. Learning to braid with string is also a great way to test out new types of braids before you use them on hair, rope or ribbon. Try your hand with three, four and eight string-braids.

Method 1
Three-String Braid

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    Purchase spools of string. If you want your string braid to be one color, cut three lengths of the same string. If you want a multi-colored braid, cut three lengths of string in different colors.
    • Make sure that you cut the string in the same exact length each time. A length of one foot is a good starting point for braiding string.
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    Gather the ends of the string. Pull them so that they are even.
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    Tie a knot 2 inches from one end. Cut a three-inch (7.5cm) piece of tape and then tape the knotted end to the table.
    • Smooth the tape on the table’s surface so that it will stay while you pull on the string.[1]
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    Separate the three pieces of string on the table. Pick up the right string between your right thumb and index finger. Pick up the left string between your left thumb and index finger.
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    Pick up the third, and middle, string with your right middle finger. As you braid, you will pass the middle string between the middle fingers of your right and left hands.
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    Twist the right string toward the center, over the middle string. Your wrist will turn counterclockwise.
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    Grasp the new center string with your left middle finger. Twist the left string over center string. You wrist will rotate clockwise.
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    Repeat this motion, exchanging the right string for the center string and the left string for the center string until you reach the end of your string.
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    Twist tightly so that your string braid is tight. With practice, you will learn to control the tightness of the braid.
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    Knot the end.

Method 2
Four-String (Flat) Braid

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    Line up four equal lengths of string. Tie a knot 2 inches from one end and then tape it to your table.
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    Separate the four pieces of string.
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    Grasp the outer pieces of string between your thumb and forefinger on either side.
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    Grasp the inner pieces of string in your middle fingers on either side.
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    Twist the outer left string inside the inner left string. They will switch places.
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    Take the outer right string and place it between the left outer and left inner string.
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    Repeat bringing the outer left string over the left inner string. Then, twist the right outer string between the two left strings.
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    Continue until you reach the end of your string. This string braid should lie flat.[2]
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    Knot the end.

Method 3
Eight-String Braid

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    Cut eight equal lengths of string. Arrange them so the ends are even.
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    Tape the eight separate lengths of string to your table. This braid will also lay flat.
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    Separate the string into four lengths on the left and four lengths on the right. One will be the right group and one will be the left group. Keep some distance between these two groups as you braid.
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    Start by braiding each string manually so you understand the pattern. Once you understand it, you can try grasping a string in four of your fingers on each hand.
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    Twist the left outer string. Take it over the next string, under the next string and over the last string in the left group. Place it alongside the inner portion of the right group of string.
    • The right group should now have five strings and the left group should have three.
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    Take the right outer string. Take it under, over, under then over. It should now be on the inside of the left group of string.
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    Repeat, taking the left string over, under and over to meet the right group. Then, take the right outer string under, over, under and over to meet the left group.[3]
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    Knot the end. Finished!

Tips

  • To make a string bracelet or necklace, pull glass, metal or plastic beads onto the string as you braid. They will be caught in your braid.
  • There are many more types of braids to try once you get the hang of braiding with string. Research other types of braids to increase your repertoire.

Things You'll Need

  • Spool of string
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Table

Article Info

Categories: Hobbies and Crafts