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Braiding Kit B - Instructions (come with kit)

Complete Braiding Kit B1

Best way to use this kit and how to get the most out of it is to follow the supplemental instructions below.

To use this Kit, first to take inventory of all the materials listed making sure they are all included. Then begin the process by following the instructions carefully both in the instruction sheet and it the book.

Complete Braiding Kit B1 – combination of 3 kits in one.

Kit B1 Includes:

* Kit A1- "Basic Buttons & Knots" with tools
* Plaiting Kit for 4, 6, 8 and 12
* Key Fob Kit
* "The Art of Braiding, The Basics-2nd Rev. Ed."


Button Kit A1 includes:
* Three colors of roo strings, cut, split and beveled from kangaroo hides and tagged to correspond with detailed kit use information sheet. These strings are the same as I use for braiding buttons. The quantity is enough to braid 3 each of the following buttons:

2 Pass Spanish Ring Knot
3 Pass Spanish Ring Knot
6 Bight Turk's Head with herringbone interweave
6 Bight Turk's Head with a gaucho interweave
Long pineapple button
4 Bight Gaucho


* Tools included:

Bone folder
3.5 oz. can of white saddle soap


Items the braider will need to furnish:

tape(cloth or masking),
finishing stick (see suggestions in book).

*Button strings are labeled with numbers that correspond to the following:

1 - Main button strings:

6 bight Turk's head/herringbone interweave - 1st string- cut 1ft. 10 inches
6 Bight Turk's Head/gaucho interweave - cut 3 ft.
Long pineapple button - 1st string - cut 3 ft.
4 bight gaucho - cut 2 ft.

2 - Interweave strings:

6 bight Turk's head/herringbone interweave - 2nd string- cut 1 ft. 4 inches
Long pineapple button - 2nd string - cut 2 ft. 9 inches
3 pass Spanish ring knot - 2nd string - cut 10 inches

3 - Spanish Ring knot strings:

2 Pass Spanish Ring Knot - cut 1 ft. 2 inches
3 Pass Spanish Ring Knot - 1st string - cut 1 ft. 2 inches

*Suggestions for Button Kit:

There is extra length allowed for each button. Measure the string lengths in each bundle and take notes. This is what you would have to do, if you were cutting the strings for a project. Cut one string of the first button you plan to braid. Write down the string length, then when finished if you have too much extra string, write down the corrected length. This way the string length can be adjusted as necessary. Example: if a string is cut for the 6 bight Turk's head with a gaucho interweave at 2 ft. 9 inches and the braiding is complete, you find you easily have 2 inches extra, write this down. The next time you can cut this button it can be cut at 2 ft. 7 inches. Some of the bundles may be one continuous string and some may be several strings.

Cut a long taper on the ends. Most students make it too blunt. Remember to saddle soap the strings before braiding.

Remember you can unbraid and re-braid these buttons probably as many times as you need, but do not cut off the ends.

Two mandrels are included for two reasons. 1) It might be best to braid the first buttons on one mandrel, leaving the strings ends on. Then use these buttons as a reference while you braid them on the second mandrel. 2) Two mandrels provide more room to braid the buttons.

Plaiting Kit for 4, 6, 8 and 12:

Plaiting Strings: These pre-cut plaiting strings are tied in their individual groups. It is not necessary for the 4 and 6 plait to have an inner core. The 8 and 12 plait need an inner core in order to plait round and there is an inner core tied with these groups. The groups of plaited strings will either be individual strings or pairs folded in half. Example: the 4 plait will either be 4 individual strings or 2 strings (2 times as long) folded in half. When the group of strings is a pairs keep a knot, at the folded end and anchor them onto a stout object to begin the plaiting. Remember to thoroughly soap the strings. Also, work at keeping the hair side of the roo strings to the outside of the plaiting. If you feel you need more practice with these strings, they can be undone and plaited again. You may need to re-apply saddle soap.

I suggest braiding terminal knots (page 56) on the ends of the plaited pieces. Leave 4-6 inches of unbraided string, if you plan to do this. Practice tying terminal knots on the plaited pieces, good practice for later projects and a valuable skill to learn. Make sure to first tie the plaited ends securely with a nylon string or the equivalent. A good start would be is to tie a terminal knot on each end of the 4 plait. Aim at not turning the strings over or twisting as you tie it. This will keep the terminal knot smooth and round. When tying terminal knots with more than 4 strings, I suggest that you keep the plaited strings in groups that will give you either 3 or 4 groups. Example: If you have 6 strings, make 3 pairs of 2. If you have 12 strings, make 4 groups of 3. You can see how hard it is to keep the string from twisting with larger groups. A common terminal knot is braided when both ends of a 4 plait or 6 plait are brought together for a project. In these cases 4 plait when brought together equals 8 strings, so make 4 pairs to tie the terminal. 6 plait when brought together, equals 12 strings, so divide them into 4 groups of 3 to the terminal knot.

When the terminal knot is tightened, it is a good time to braid a 4 bight gaucho button over it. The object is to have it nice and round. In future projects this is the point where the item is ready for a decorative button.

* Key fob kit with pre-cut strings to make a finished project from skills learned from the kit and book.

The key fob has pre-cut strings tied to the ring. I suggest doing this last.

3 main button strings, cut the same length.

6 Bight Turk's Head/gaucho interweave - 1st & last button.
Long pineapple button - 1st string.

1 interweave string - long pineapple button

2 Spanish Ring Knot Strings - 2 passes


The photo below is the key fob pattern. The colors will vary.

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