How to make friendship bracelets (2023)

There is something very special about wearing a token made by a good friend. It’s like having a little bit of your friend with you all the time. Made in your choice of wool or thread, friendship bracelets are our favourite token like this. We can’t get enough of crafting them in different styles and colours. Even if you’ve never crafted before, it is easy to do with our video guides. We’ve got 3 great methods here – classic chevron, woven jellyfish bracelets or cross stitch bracelets. If you want more ideas, check out Gathered’s free crochet friendship bracelet patterns

It’s hard to beat the classic knotted DIY friendship bracelet. But if you like cross stitch, you could make a cross stitch bracelet, too. Both of these friendship bracelets use the same thread, so you can mix and match between the styles. The cross stitch bracelets are designed by Durene Jones and were published in Cross Stitch Crazy issue 191. Scroll down to find the cross stitch bracelet pattern or click the link below to jump straight there. You can also craft a chunky bracelet using our finger knitting for kids tutorial if you want more ideas!

Or how about you try weaving a bracelet instead? These cool jellyfish bracelets are woven on a cardboard circle in wool or thread. They make fantastic friendship bracelets. They are super simple to make with our video guide. However you choose to make your friendship bracelets, we hope they bring colour and fun. We hope your friends like them and that they all make one for you, too. For more kids projects check out our craft ideas for kids and our paper crafts for kidsround up. Or why not decorate your friendship bracelet with a special charm made using our how to make shrinky dinks tutorial?

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Click on the links below to jump straight to the different ways to make friendship bracelets, or browse our entire tutorial to expand your thread bracelet DIY skills to the max!

How to make friendship bracelets

How to weave a bracelet

Cross stitch bracelets

How to make friendship bracelets

All the different designs in a classic friendship bracelet are built up from the same basic knot. So once you’ve learned how to do this knot, you can do any of the patterns. We’ve created this cool bracelet design to teach you three easy patterns: Spiral, chevron and reverse chevron. Start by choosing 4 colours of stranded cotton for your friendship bracelet. Cut 2 x 60cms of each colour, so you have 8 lengths of thread in total. Knot the 8 threads together at one end. Attach the friendship bracelet to your lap by slipping a safety pin through the knot and pinning in to your trouser leg. Put a cushion on your lap and pin it to this if you are not wearing trousers.

How to make friendship bracelets video

If you want to follow along with our how to make friendship bracelets video, you can knot along with us! But if you prefer written instructions with photographs, we have those for you too – just scroll down to find them.

Spread out the threads so that you have 4 on one side and 4 on the other side. You want to arrange the colours so that they are mirror images on each side. So you might have two yellow threads on outsides and two reds as the thread in the centre.

How to make friendship bracelets: Materials

How to weave a bracelet

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Want to expand your friendship bracelet skills? We think this How to weave a bracelet tutorial could be just what you are looking for. Using just a simple circle loom made from a bit of scrap cardboard, you can learn how to weave a bracelet in minutes with our easy tutorial. Essentially you are making a bracelet out of a cardboard circle loom with wools or yarn! This style of friendship bracelet is sometimes called a jellyfish bracelet.

Step 1

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Start by drawing our your circle loom on a bit of scrap cardboard. You can draw around something round like a jar lid if you need to. Draw a line at the top, bottom and two sides of the circle. If this was a clock face, these lines would be at 12, 3, 6 and 9 o’clock. Then draw 4 more lines in between these, so you have a loom drawn out like in the above picture.

Step 2

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Now cut around the circle and make some small snips into the lines to make small notches. It’s best to keep the notches small, as if you snip too far into the cardboard with the scissors it can make your loom a bit floppy and hard to handle. Make a hole in the middle for your threads to go through

Step 3

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Cut 7 pieces of thread, each about 60cm long. They can be any colour you like and you can use the same colour more than once in your DIY thread bracelet if you like. Thread the 7 strands through the centre hole of your loom and secure them at the back with a knot. Put each stand of thread into a different notch on your loom – 1 of the notches will stay empty.

Step 4

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Now we start weaving the friendship bracelet. Put the empty notch at the top, count three notches round and pick up the thread from that notch. Move the thread up to the empty notch at the top. Now the notch where the thread was before is the empty notch. Move it up to the top, count three notches round and pick up the thread from that notch. Move the thread up to the empty notch at the top. Now the notch where the thread was before is the empty notch. You get the idea – keep repeating this process over and over again.

Step 5

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Pull on the knot at the back of the work to keep the threads taut at the front and pull your growing friendship bracelet down through the hole at the back. It’s looking great! Keep on weaving your friendship bracelet by moving the empty notch to the top, picking up the thread 3 notches round and moving this to the empty notch at the top.

Step 6

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Once your friendship bracelet is a long as you want it to be, slip the threads from out of the notches and pull the bracelet off the cardboard circle. Tie a knot in the end, tie the two ends together to make a loop and then snip off the long threads. There you go – you’ve learnt how to weave a bracelet! You can see the process in action in our How to weave a bracelet video too.

How to weave a bracelet video

Cross stitch bracelets

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Whether you are an experienced cross stitcher, or are trying out cross stitch for the first time, these cross stitch bracelets are simple to stitch and make great friendship bracelets for kids to try out. If you’d like some guidelines on how to cross stitch, check out our cross stitch for beginners article.

Easy to personalise, fun to stitch and great to give, kids will love these colourful friendship bands! We’ve found a fantastic way to get children cross stitching, and keep them occupied over the summer. Friendship bracelets have always been in fashion, especially with young girls, and they’ll love stitching these bold, vibrant designs to give as inexpensive gifts to their pals. Pick just one pattern to stitch in everyone’s favourite colours, or stitch different designs in the same thread shades so others can easily tell they’re BFFs! Once stitched, follow our simple instructions explaining how to make friendship bracelets from your cross stitching in no time at all.

Click to download the cross stitch bracelets pattern.

The download in an A4 PDF with 4 friendship bracelet cross stitch pattern and an accompanying key. These were designed by Durene Jones. To see more of Durene’s designs, take a look at our Durene Jones cross stitch fox pattern, or visit her online Etsy store.

How to make friendship bracelets from your cross stitch

  1. Add the interfacing to the reverse of your stitched design following the manufacturer’s instructions, then trim the excess fabric around the edge, leaving a one square border all round the edge of your friendship bracelet design.
  2. Cut a piece of self-adhesive felt to the same size as your friendship bracelet and put to one side.
  3. Tie the ends of your cord together using a slipknot so the friendship bracelet can be made bigger or smaller, then flatten and secure either end of the loop to the inside of the bracelet with a few stitches.
  4. Attach the felt to the inside of the braceletand you’re finished!
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We hope you’ve enjoyed learning how to make friendship bracelets! You could also try our free friendship bracelet crochet pattern or our free festive friendship bracelet pattern. For more crafty ideas head to our free daily craft patterns and find over 100 new projects.


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