Denim Mystery Braid Project

About: Pinterest directed me to Instructables. I'm not sure if that was a good thing or bad - but now I'm hooked. I have made jewelry since 1988. I have had some designs published, taught jewelry at Michael's Hobb...

Going to turn those jeans into shorts? Don't throw the legs away! Make a matching bracelet.

After having made these mystery braids in leather, I thought about other materials to use. This is simple - no sewing - fun and quick project. The longest part of this project is figuring the braid out. But Fuzzyyellowduck on Instrutables has a wonderful set of instructions.

This bracelet will fray some. But frayed denim material is just even more cool. If you really do not want any fraying, you can place some "No-Fray" product along the edges of the material.

Step 1: Supplies Needed

This project really does not require many supplies.

Steam-A-Seam 2 Fusible Web
It must be the heavy duty web.
It is sold at JoAnn’s and most other fabric stores.

Velcro – this is the sew on type

Old Jeans

Step 2: Prepare the Jeans - Turn Them Into Material

Find an old pair of jeans. If you're cutting off the legs of a pair, that's a perfect situation to use the cut off part for this bracelet.

You will use both sides of the jeans. You need 2 identical pieces of material in size.

Square off the edge of the cut off part (make sure the edge is straight). You can use a ruler or other straight edge to do this.

Step 3: Cut the Material to Size.

Using the ruler or straight-edge again to cut the correct width of material. The material should be from 3/4" to 1-1/2" wide. In my pictures I used 1-1/2". I find any smaller than that just too difficult to work with when you're using material. The smaller size works better with leather.

Remember to still be cutting through TWO sides of the jeans leg.

Now cut the pieces to the desired length. The length should be what ever length you want plus 1/2 inch. Most bracelets are 7" in length. So in that case you would cut the material to be 7-1/2" long. 

It is at this step that you should have two separate pieces of denim material.

Step 4: Iron on the Fusible Web.

Take a piece of the fusible web. Both sides of the web are sticky. This is so you can place the web onto the fabric before ironing and make sure it's positioned right.

You only need ONE piece of fusible web. It will be "sandwiched" between the two pieces of denim.

Remove one side of the sheeting, place fusible web on one of the strips of material. DO NOT IRON yet. Cut the fusible web to the correct width and length. 

Remove the other side of the paper backing and place the other piece of denim material on. Make sure the two pieces edges are flush to one another.

Now iron both pieces of denim with the fusible web in-between.

Step 5: Cut the Slits for Braiding.

Fold the bracelet material in half. Place the folded edge on a ruler to measure where you need to make the slits for braiding.

For the 1-1/2" width material, you would make a slit at 1/2" and 1". Just "snip" at the mark with scissors to make an opening in the material.

After marking the two slit positions, open the material (from the fold) and put the scissors through the slit. Finish the cut to within 1" of each end of the material. Do this also in the other snipped hole for the second slit.

Step 6: You Now Have ...

You know have 2 pieces of denim material fused together. They are "slit" two times equally down the length of the material.

Step 7: How Do I Make That Confusing Braid?

This is the link to the instructions that Fuzzyyellowduck made for making the infamous mystery braid. Fuzzy makes the braid in leather but the same principle/instructions/steps is used for this braid.

I suggest taking one piece of scrap material, without the fusible webbing, make the same measurements as you did on the denim. Use this piece of material to practice the braid. When I was initially making this bracelet I really frayed the material as I tried multiple times to get the braid (it took me quite a few tries as I hadn't found Fuzzy's directions yet).

Don't get frustrated - you'll get it.

Step 8: Put on the Fasteners.

Cut two pieces of Velcro to fit on the ends of your bracelet. Cut two pieces of fusible web. One for each of the Velcro pieces.

MAKE SURE you place the hook side of the Velcro on one end. Use the sticky of the fusible web to hold it to the bracelet. Take the loop side of the Velcro and place on the opposite end AND ON THE OPPOSITE SIDE.

Try the bracelet on your wrist to make sure the Velcro pieces line up with each other.

When you are satisfied with their placement, iron them on using the fusible web pieces. Let them cool before latching them and pulling them apart.

Step 9: Yippee, You Did It!

Thanks for using our tutorial. You can always download the original PDF file via our website Nature's Sol.

We're currently still posting graphic files for downloads, jewelry, and more to our website.

In the meantime, visit our online shops. The links are on the main page of our website.

See an interesting necklace or bracelet that you would like to make? Just send me the picture and I'll see what I can do on helping you figure out the materials needed and how to make it.

Many of the high-dollar jewelry items can be made using simple components from your local craft store. Just contact me through Facebook with your idea for a jewelry tutorial!

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