More kumihimo

Since I was in no hurry to buy a kumihimo disk, my boyfriend got me one for my birthday last year. It’s a 6-inch diameter disk, which I felt was a bit large for my hands. A 4-inch disk would have been more comfortable to hold, so he got me one (actually it came in a pack of 3) for my birthday this year. I’ve noticed that the slots of foam disks will get stretched, so after using them with thicker cords, they no longer hold thinner ones as tightly.

Now that I finally had a “real” disk, I wanted to give more complicated patterns a try. I was confused about how to read a kumihimo pattern, because I was used to only using eight strings. Then I found this video by Marekitty Bracelets showing how to do the lattice flower pattern.

I made this braid in the lattice flower pattern with 1mm diameter Chinese knotting cord. I’m not happy with how elongated the design became. The braid is 6-7mm thick.

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I tried it again with C-Lon (Tex 210), and like the result much better. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find cord ends that will fit it. The width of the braid is 4.5mm.

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Later I bought a thick 4-inch diameter disk. The thicker disks can hold thinner cords, which will just slide through a regular disk. (Surprisingly, my cardboard disk actually has an even tighter grip than the thick foam one.) I intended to use it with micro C-Lon and 15/0 seed beads. At first I attempted to do the same flower lattice pattern, but it would not work! The beads kept popping out of place—there was too much going on—so I gave up. Then I came across this tutorial by CSLdesigns showing how to do a flower kumihimo pattern with beads. I ended up making a wrap bracelet with it, because I thought one strand alone looked too thin.

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The beaded part of the braid is about 4mm wide.

I have since made another beaded flower braid with 11/0 seed beads and fine C-Lon. Again, I’m having some difficulty finding cord ends for it. I am also exploring more designs with kumihimo. There are quite a few elaborate ones out there. Since kumihimo is simple enough that nearly anyone can do it—and those that can’t or don’t want to can easily find someone who will—I would need to come up with something unique or more innovative if I ever were to sell it.

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