How To Make Friendship Bracelets – Crafts by Amanda


Kids can create these friendship bracelets in their favorite colors to share with friends! There’s nothing sweeter than a token of friendship to keep for years to come.

Why we love this project

Traditional bracelets are tied on while the giver makes a wish for her friend. Once the bracelet finally falls off, it is said the wish will come true. Even though ours is made with a button closure, I’d still make a wish as I give a bracelet to a friend. That’s what friendship is about!

little girl tying a friendship bracelet onto another girl's wrist

Friendship bracelets are all about patterns. This candy stripe diagonal pattern is a great one for beginners. You work in a pattern of making 2 knots per strand as you create a diagonal woven pattern.

If you’re giving this bracelet as a gift, pair it with a cute personalized stenciled frame with a photo of you and your friend! 

several friendship bracelets laying on a table

Craft supplies you will need:

supplies for friendship bracelets and a girl's hands clasped together

Craft information:

  • Age Level: 10 years old
  • Mess Factor: Minimal
  • Time to Complete: 1 hour
  • Cost estimate: 50-99 cents per bracelet
little girl wearing a friendship bracelet and making a peace sign

Craft Tips:

  • It is easier to work at a table. Have the loop end taped about arms-length on the table and let the floss hang off of the table right in front of you.
  • If you want to take a break from knotting, finish the row of knots, then tape down the strand of floss on the far left, separate from other strands. When you are ready to start, simply remove the tape and start a new row of knots.
  • If your bracelet starts to curl you can “block it” to make it lay flat.  When your finished bracelet is done, tape it to a flat surface. Make sure it’s pulled nice and taut. Spray it with a good amount of water and let it dry like that. Then remove the tape.

How to Make Candy Stripe Friendship Bracelets:

Measure your wrist: Use the extra piece of floss to wrap around your (or your friend’s) wrist one time. Take floss off your wrist, holding the spot where the floss “connected” and cut that. This is the approximate length your bracelet needs to be.

Measure the floss: The general rule is to cut pieces of floss the length between your fingertips and shoulder. Hold the end of the floss in your fingers and stretch your arm out, do this 2x so you have 1 long piece of floss, double the length of your fingers to shoulder. Do this for all 3 colors of floss.

a loop of embroidery floss
embroidery floss wrapped around finger
tying a knot with floss

Make the loop for button closure: Take the 3 strands of floss together and fold them in half. Make an overhand knot at the fold, creating a little loop at the where you are tying the knot. This will be the loop for your button closure.

embroidery floss taped to table

Tape down the loop end to the table.

Arrange your 6 strands of floss in the order you want. The strand all the way on the left is the one that will make the first row. You will knot it around all the other strands of floss.

Note: If you have 2 of the same colors next to each other, you will have a wider band of that color in your bracelet.

Make the knots: This bracelet uses the “forward knot” which creates knots left to right, just the way we read.

strands of embroidery floss
hands moving embroidery floss

1. Take the first strand on the left, shape it into a number 4 with the 2nd strand next to it being the straight line of the “4”. Make sure the first strand goes over the second strand, and then behind as shown in the photo. It is important the first strand always goes OVER the second strand, it’ll give it the right look.

sliding floss up
pulling embroidery floss to the top of knot

2. Now hold the second strand taut, and pull the first strand up and into the loop. Pull until you meet resistance, but not any harder! This will create a small knot on the second strand.
3. Make another knot by tying the first strand around the second strand again – by just repeating steps 1-2.
4. Continue moving across to the right, using the first strand to create two knots on each strand of floss/yarn in the bracelet.

sliding floss up
not of floss
making a bracelet

5. Once you’ve knotted all the way across to the right and reached the last strand of floss/yarn, begin again using the first strand on the left. Make sure you’re making TWO knots on each strand.

weaving a friendship bracelet
sliding floss up the bracelet
demonstrating how to make a friendship bracelet
diagonal friendship bracelet pattern
friendship bracleet

6. Keep knotting until you have the right measurement for your wrist. You can check by lining up the piece of floss you used to measure your wrist.

embroidery floss strung through button holes
tying the embroidery floss in a knot
trimming the ends of string with scissors
looping button through embroidery floss loop

Add the button: Once the knots are done, take the button and slide 3 strands of floss into 1 hole and 3 strands of floss into the other hole. Note: you may need to roll the ends of the 3 strands together to get them to slide through the buttonhole. Tie the 2 strand sections together in a tight overhand knot. Trim loose floss off.

The bracelet is finished! Wrap the bracelet around your wrist and slide the button through the loop to secure.

two girl's holding hands wearing the friendship bracelets they made

Friendship bracelets originate from Guatemala and made their way to the States in the 1970s. Friendship bracelets are a form of macrame since the woven patterns are created by knots. It is traditional to make and give a bracelet to a friend as a sign of long-lasting friendship.

More Bracelet Making Ideas

several friendship bracelets on a table

Print Project

Friendship Bracelets

See how to create your very own friendship bracelets to share with friends! Create them together in colors of your choice using our free instructional pattern.

Crafting Time1 hr

Total Time1 hr

Age Group: Kids Crafts

Project Type: Crafts

Supplies

Craft supplies you will need

  • Embroidery Floss in 3 assorted colors
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Button
  • Extra piece of floss approx. 12”

Instructions

How to Make a Candy Stripe Friendship Bracelet:

Measure your wrist

  • Use the extra piece of floss to wrap around your (or your friend’s) wrist one time. Take floss off your wrist, holding the spot where the floss “connected” and cut that. This is the approximate length your bracelet needs to be.

Measure the floss

  • The general rule is to cut pieces of floss the length between your fingertips and shoulder. Hold the end of the floss in your fingers and stretch your arm out, do this 2x so you have 1 long piece of floss, double the length of your fingers to shoulder. Do this for all 3 colors of floss.

Make the loop for button closure

Make the knots

  • This bracelet uses the “forward knot” which creates knots left to right, just the way we read.Take the first strand on the left, shape it into a number 4 with the 2nd strand next to it being the straight line of the “4”. Make sure the first strand goes over the second strand, and then behind as shown in the photo. It is important the first strand always goes OVER the second strand, it’ll give it the right look.
  • Now hold the second strand taut, and pull the first strand up and into the loop. Pull until you meet resistance, but not any harder! This will create a small knot on the second strand.

  • Make another knot by tying the first strand around the second strand again – by just repeating steps 1-2.

  • Continue moving across to the right, using the first strand to create two knots on each strand of floss in the bracelet.

  • Once you’ve knotted all the way across to the right and reached the last strand of floss/yarn, begin again using the first strand on the left. Make sure you’re making TWO knots on each strand.

  • Keep knotting until you have the right measurement for your wrist. You can check by lining up the piece of floss you used to measure your wrist.

Add the button

  • Once the knots are done, take the button and slide 3 strands of floss into 1 hole and 3 strands of floss into the other hole. Note: you may need to roll the ends of the 3 strands together to get them to slide through the button hole. Tie the 2 strand sections together in a tight overhand knot. Trim loose floss off.

  • The bracelet is finished! Wrap the bracelet around your wrist and slide the button through the loop to secure.

Expert Tips & FAQs

  • It is easier to work at a table. Have the loop end taped about arms-length on the table and let the floss hang off of the table right in front of you.
  • If you want to take a break from knotting, finish the row of knots, then tape down the strand of floss on the far left, separate from other strands. When you are ready to start, simply remove tape and start a new row of knots.
  • If your bracelet starts to curl you can “block it” to make it lay flat. When your finished bracelet is done, tape it to a flat surface. Make sure it’s pulled nice and taut. Spray it with a good amount of water and let it dry like that. Then remove the tape.

This post originally appeared here on July 30, 2021.

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