Kumihimo Draws You In and Inspires Beautiful Designs

12 years ago I endeavored down the kumihimo path. My first experiences were on a marudai, a Japanese tool used for braiding cords. Marudais themselves are beautiful and invite you in, don’t you agree?

marudai

Alas, as much as I wanted to master this beautiful tool and make beautiful beaded, kumihimo designs, kumihimo and I just didn’t click back then. Fast-forward and enter the round and square kumihimo braiding discs.

round_kumi_disc Using-the-Kumihimo-Plate-to-Create-Flat-Braids---d18s_step4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These very approachable (and portable) tools, along with some help from good friends, had me excited and brimming with confidence as I endeavored down the kumihimo path again. This time around, I was weaving different patterns and working beads, Swarovski crystals and different weight cords and threads into fun, wearable, colorful designs.

Hemp, 8/0 seed beads, Swarovski crystal, Tammy Honaman, 2012

Hemp, 8/0 seed beads, Swarovski crystal, Tammy Honaman, 2012

Rattail, sterling-silver filled wire, Tammy Honaman, 2012

Rattail, sterling-silver filled wire, Tammy Honaman, 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I know I am not alone in my exploration as kumihimo has swept the beading community! And there are many artists pushing the kumihimo boundaries, combining unexpected materials, and taking things beyond the traditional. Take a look at just a few examples.

New Helix2 Necklace with Swarovski crystals, 7-strand "fill the gap" braid, Jamie North,  2016

New Helix2 Necklace with Swarovski crystals, 7-strand “fill the gap” braid, Jamie North, 2016

Kumihimo on leather with wire Conetastic cones, Sandra Lupo and Marsha Freedman, 2015

Kumihimo Splash bracelet, Susanne Branca, Beadwork June/July 2011

Kumihimo Splash bracelet, Susanne Branca, Beadwork June/July 2011

Edgy Kumihimo bracelet, Sue Charette-Hood, Beadwork Oct/Nov 2012

Edgy Kumihimo bracelet, Sue Charette-Hood, Beadwork Oct/Nov 2012

Melroy's Concertina, Maggie Thompson

Melroy’s Concertina, Maggie Thompson, Elegant Kumihimo 10 Projects to Braid with Seed, Shaped and Crystal Beads

If you’re inspired to create a kumihimo design, want to try your hand at it again, or ready to  work different materials into your next braid, you’ll love Elegant Kumihimo: 10 Projects to Braid with Seed, Shaped and Crystal Beads, by Maggie Thompson. Maggie guides you step-by-step through 10 projects, and along the way provides tips, optional finishing ideas, and sizing guidance so you can make each design truly your own.

Have a favorite bead to work into your kumihimo designs, a braid pattern you would like to share or a favorite design you’ve made? We’d all love to hear from you! Please leave a comment at BeadingDaily.com.

Happy braiding,

blue_tammy

 

 

 

 

 

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