Last week I saw some friends of mine wearing these cool Paracord Survival Bracelets. I asked where they got them and they said that they MADE them! Apparently they sell them at places like R.E.I. (Recreational Equipment Inc.) for about $10+, but you can easily make them for a fraction of the cost. In fact, we purchased 100 feet of cord (from R.E.I.) in 2 different colors for a little under $10. That will make you a ton of them for yourself and to give away as gifts.
Here's what the two toned ones look like. They are reversible, so it's like getting two bracelets in one! That's Aria's favorite part about them. I agree, but really the best part about them is that they are made out of about 6-8 continuous feet of very strong utility cord that can be disassembled in the event of an emergency and used for whatever the need. They are perfect to wear when camping, fishing, hiking or any outdoor activity where emergencies may arise.
Plus- they are easy enough that the kids can make them!
Today, they made themselves one, plus one for their dad, and their uncles for their birthdays!
Here's out tutorial explaining how to make them. The hardest part is getting started, but once you have done one, you can do another in about 10 minutes time.
Paracord Survival Bracelet Tutorial
First gather your supplies. All you need is a lighter, a pair of scissors and at least 10 feet of utility cord or paracord. I'm sure you can buy it other places, but we bought it at R.E.I. You can use two colors like we did, but that's not essential, we just like the way it looks.
Next, take the end of each color of cord and fray them a bit with your fingers. Then, melt them with a lighter for about 15-20 seconds until they liquify a bit and then join them together firmly, pressing with your fingers as they cool. Be careful not to burn yourself in this process.
Once you have fused them, fold it in half from the center and measure 3-4 feet of doubled cord, then cut. This will give you 6-8 continuous feet of cord.
(You will need no more than 6 continuous feet to make a child or woman's bracelet and up to 8 to make a grown man's bracelet.)
Now, take another piece of cord and fold it in half. Make this long enough to wrap around your wrist plus a couple of inches. You want to tie a knot in the open end. The bracelet should be long enough so that when it's completed, the knot will slip through the loop in the end and stay on your wrist.
I'll refer to this as the bracelet base.
**Here's a reference for how long to make the bracelet base:
Aria's base- from the inside of the knot to loop end was 6 inches (she's 10)
My base- from inside of the knot to loop end was 7 inches (I'm an average adult woman)
Greg's base- from inside of the knot to loop end was 9 inches (he's got big burley man hands :o))
We took this old scrap of wood from the garage that had screws in it to hold our cords while we wove it, but it isn't necessary. Aria make one while Cole was using the wood piece by taping the end to a table. Just use your creativity and you'll find a way to make it that works for you.
So, take your bracelet base and secure it to something to stabilize it.
Next, place your fused cord behind it, with the jointed section in the center.
Take one side (in this case it's the blue side) and loop it over the bracelet base to form a backward "C".
Then take the other side (the black cord) and bring in over (or on top of) the blue cord.
Now bring the black cord behind the bracelet base like shown.
Pull the black cord up and through the blue loop like this.
Give it a nice tug and you should have your first knot! It should look like this. Make sure the jointed piece stays centered behind the bracelet base.
In the picture to the right, 2 more knots have already been tied. But I wanted to show you that once you have completed the last knot shown, you do the same process for the next knot, it's just reversed. Let me show you.
First make a "C" with the blue cord over top of the bracelet base.
Now, bring the black cord over top of the blue one.
Then, pull the black cord behind the bracelet base, as before.
Pull the black cord up and through the blue "C" loop.
Pull the cord tight and you will have made another knot!
Notice as you continue that one color will remain in the center and the other will flank it on the borders. This is how you will ensure you are doing it right.
Once you have knotted it all the way down the length of the bracelet base, trim the excess and burn the frayed end until it liquifies. Then press the melted tip into the side of the bracelet to secure it. If this step is not done correctly, your bracelet will unravel.
You can also trim the excess cord past the knot end and burn that as well to seal it.
So there you have it- your very own Paracord Survival Bracaelet! Now put it on and wear it proud! When an emergency arises, you just might be the one prepared to save the day!