Get Crafty @ Home
Hand Crafting a Friendship Bracelet
At this time of being apart, this craft holds a special significance
By sharing this worksheet from Bridget's Scrap Bag with your friends, you could craft bracelets together at home, while chatting over a video call.
Creating lasting, happy memories, along with a promise to meet again in person, when lockdown ends. Or simply make a bracelet as a gift for a special friend who you may be missing.
Crafting helps recovery from stress and boosts happiness
As you make the bracelet, think kindly of your friends, remembering good times enjoyed together. This will help to increase your happiness and relaxation, reducing negative feelings of isolation, anxiety and mild depression.
Crafting this corded bracelet requires making repetitive movements with your hands, which has been shown by neuroscience to increase your ability to focus and boost your mood. You will also be training your hand and brain coordination, whilst learning new skills.
Design your own Bracelet
Feel free to add your own special touches, to suit your friend's personality and tastes. You might like to vary the colours or types of threads to create patterns. Along with wool, try cotton, embroidery thread, leather, plastic yarn or synthetic paracord, or natural string made from hemp, raffia or nettle.
Fix special charms to the finished bracelet with a jump ring, or thread beads onto the cords as you weave. Alternatively, you could make a matching set, including slight variations of colour or pattern, to signify your wish to remain friends for a long time.
Keep Well and Stay Safe
Remember to frequently wash your hands during the making process and when wrapping your gift. Then deliver your package safely by post, or arrange to drop it off at your friend's house, during your daily exercise. Greet your friend from a safe physical distance, so that you and their families, both stay safe.
Be bold! Ask your Friend to Make a Wish
Traditionally, a Friendship Bracelet should be kept on the wrist until it is totally worn out by time and falls off naturally. Honouring the hard work, blessings and love you both have put into it.
Invite your friend to make a Wish, as they tie the bracelet on their wrist. Because it is believed that when the bracelet falls off, then your friend's Wish will be granted.
When were knotted bracelets first made?
Worn by both men and women, bracelets crafted by knotting and weaving in wool, threads and cords have a long history, linked to fascinating craft traditions around the world.
In East Asia, decorative knotted bracelets have been found in China from 481 to 221 BC. Whilst in Japan, knotted and woven silk braids called Kumihimo, have been hand made for centuries and are still used for tying Samurai armour and kimono. In the 13th century, tying knots in strong cord to make various patterns, known as macrame, was being used in Arabia to craft household items.
Origins of the Friendship Bracelet
In South America, the Andean's used special knotted strings called Quipu to calculate time and record binding treaties between individuals, including keeping a long count of village populations. The idea for the Friendship Bracelet grew from this practice in the 1980s as a way of showing solidarity with Indigenous Mayan people's Land right protests in Guatemala.
the United Nations International Day of Friendship is held on the 20th July each year
"Through friendship — by accumulating bonds of camaraderie and developing strong ties of trust — we can contribute to the fundamental shifts that are urgently needed to achieve lasting stability, weave a safety net that will protect us all, and generate passion for a better world where all are united for the greater good." #SpreadKindness