Thursday, August 11, 2016

Upcycled Placemat Bracelet

You'll Never Guess What This Bracelet is Made From!

This eye-catching bracelet is sure to surprise you. It's made from wood, metal and glass beads - a really striking combination. But there's something a bit out of the ordinary about this bracelet. Those long red wooden beads are rather interesting. And you're probably thinking that you've seen them somewhere before but can't quite put your finger on what it is that's so familiar about them. Have you worked it out yet? No?

Well, keep scrolling down the page.... and I'm sure you'll recognise them straight away. 
Red bamboo bead bracelet with silver spacers and black beads

Did you guess? The wooden beads are actually from a bamboo placemat that you can find at your local kitchenware or dollar store. What an ingenious upcycle!
Red bamboo bead placemat

If you'd like to make a placemat bracelet of your own, here's what you'll need:

Bamboo placemat
Eight 14mm silver donut beads (with 7mm internal diameter)
Eight 6mm 'Jet' Black bicone crystals
Eight 10mm black diagonally drilled square beads
Stretch Magic 1mm Beading Cord
G-S Hypo Cement

Begin by unravelling the placemat. You'll need eight of the short bamboo sticks. You'll find these along the top and bottom rows of the placemat.

Cut two 30cm (12") lengths of Stretch Magic and pre-stretch each one. This will help minimise overstretching the bracelet with wear.

On each piece of elastic, string the first hole of a donut bead. Then string a bicone on each one and pass the elastic through the second hole of each donut bead. Thread one elastic through the top hole of a bamboo bead and the other through the bottom hole. Repeat.
 String the bamboo beads alternately with the silver frame beads on Stretch Magic beading elastic.
String a square bead on each piece of elastic and then add another bamboo bead. Repeat.
Alternate the  black diamond beads and the silver frame beads with the bamboo stick beads.

Repeat these first two steps once more.
Continue with the stringing pattern

Bring the two ends of the bracelet together and tie both ends of the top elastic together in a half knot.
Tie off the Stretch Magic with a double surgeon's knot for added security.

Tie another knot in the elastic to secure. Tie the bottom elastic off in the same way.
Tie off the Stretch Magic elastic with a double surgeon's knot for added security.

Trim the knots to 6mm (1/4").
Trim the ends of the Stretch Magic about 6mm (1/4") from the knot.

Pull the knots tight by holding the cut ends between your fingers and pulling them in every direction to tighten.
Stretch the beading elastic on every side of the knot to make sure that the knot is tight.

Apply G-S Hypo Cement to each of the knots for added security and allow it to dry.
For added security, dab the G-S Hypo Cement on the knot. You can use clear nail polish if that's what you have on hand.

Once the adhesive is dry, slide the knot inside the bead to hide it.
For a really neat finish, slide the knot inside one of the beads to hide it.

And you're done!
Stylish and chic Bamboo Placemat Bracelet made of thin red bamboo beads interspersed with silver spacer beads and diamond shaped black beads.

Pin this project!
Bamboo Placemat Bracelet inspiration sheet

How to upcycle a bamboo placemat into a smart bracelet tutorial sheet

'Til next time.....

Want to learn how to make jewellery? Click here to find my books and printable pdfs

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