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Leather is a an excellent material for braiding and also weaving. The is soft and also pliable and can be reduced into different numbers of strands quickly using the same techniques that ns teach in my just how to make Leather Fringe Instructable.

Standard 3 strand animal leather braids have a very specific, and also slightly kitsch aesthetic, yet the straightforward techniques you use to do braids room the foundation for some lot more complicated and interesting woven and braided animal leather designs.

In this Instructable, I"ll show you a few of my favorite braid patterns to give you one idea the the possibilities of leather braiding. If you are trying to find more good introductory leather instruction, check out my complimentary Beginning and Intermediate Leatherworking Classes, and also my rwandachamber.org ~ above Multifunctional animal leather Bags and also How to it is in an Elf where I incorporate leather braids assorted designs.

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Step 1: Tools and also Materials


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Step 2: conventional 3 Strand Braid


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To develop the an easy 3 strand braid this way, first decide just how long and wide you need your braid to be. Braiding will take up some of the length of your leather, therefore you need to account for that. Braiding usually causes a length shrinkage of approximately 1/4 depending upon the thickness the the leather and the width of your strips. For this reason if you desire a 9" lengthy braid, you should start by cut strips about 12" long.

Braiding additionally causes a width shrinkage i beg your pardon varies through the thickness that the leather, yet a braid favor the one I"m do shrinks around 1/4" in width.

To make the an easy braid, reduced a three stranded fringe, then discover a way to hold the top end in location so you have the right to braid more easily. I prefer to usage a binder clip and then loop the handles approximately something.

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now make her braid the way you would certainly a normal braid, by alternate sides acquisition a piece from the outside and also crossing that over right into the middle. Don"t let her strips flip upside down, make sure the grain next is always facing up.

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Step 3: 3 Strand trick Braid


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Take your strands and also braid as follows: an initial pull the center of the appropriate hand piece over the center strip and also under the left hand piece all the means to the left side. You"ve basically created the beginning of a braid, but due to the fact that the bottom of the strands space connected, they are crossed too, and also you need to untangle them.

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To execute this, take the bottom appropriate hand edge of the leather, fold it up and also thread it in between the two strands that are right now farthest come the right.

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Pull it every the method through and also twist the so the grain side is facing up again. You will certainly have created something the looks a little bit messy, v a many twists in the strands. Don"t panic.

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Now fold the bottom right edge of the animal leather up again and pass it through the room between the far left and also center strands as displayed below.

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Again, you will finish up with something really messy looking, however there is stimulate under the chaos, ns promise.

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Working native the height down, untwist every strand with your finger so the braid lays flat.

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See! It"s starting to look prefer a braid! currently start the procedure all end again to continue the braid. The last bit of the braid deserve to be a little bit tricky since there isn"t a many room to weave the strands.

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Step 4: 4 Strand Braid


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The 4 strand braid is almost as an easy as the 3 strand. Because that this braid, just start out with 4 cut strips rather of 3.

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To do the braid, begin by cross the two facility strips, best over left. Then bring the far left piece over the center right strip.

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Next overcome the much right strip under the facility left strip and over the far left strip. Continue in the same rhythm to create the rest of the braid. You will constantly be bringing the strand on the left side into the facility by walking over, and also then the strand ~ above the best side into the facility by going under climate over.

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As with the 3 strand braid, store the grain side up and also the tension on her strands equal as you braid so the weave look at even.

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Step 5: 4 Strand ring Braid


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Again, secure her rope come something come leave her hands complimentary to braid. Orient the rope for this reason there space two strands in front and two strands in back. To do the braid, begin by crossing the former left strand over the former right.

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Next, take the far left strand and also bring it around the earlier of the rope, under the far right strand and also over the next strand come the left, so the is resting in the an extremely middle the the front. Tug and also tighten the strands about the rope for this reason they start to kind the braid.

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Now perform the same from the right: take the much right strand (the highest possible strand), and also bring it roughly the back of the rope, under the much left strand and also over the following strand come the right, so it is resting in the an extremely middle of the front. Tug the strands come tighten the braid.

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As you can see, you are basically constantly taking the greatest strand from alternate sides, and also wrapping it roughly the ago of the rope to the various other side and under the next greatest strand. Save working in this pattern to make the rest of the braid. Always keep the grain political parties of the lacing encountering out and also don"t allow them twist.

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This braid is really quite easy as soon as you acquire the pattern, however here"s a diagram in instance you"re still emotion confused:

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Step 6: Finishing Braids


If you want to incorporate a cost-free hanging braid into your task you need to find a way to complete the finish of the braid so that won"t unravel. There space a couple of different means to perform this. They space all a tiny tricky, therefore if friend can discover a method to combine braiding right into a job where both ends are covert inside seams it will make things simpler.

If you carry out want to try a hanging braid, you can either keep the strands that the braid cost-free at the finish or cap the braid so girlfriend don"t check out the loose ends. If you are ok with seeing the end of the lacing, you have the right to wrap subject or an additional piece the lacing approximately the end of the braid nearly the means you would through a hair tie in ~ the finish of a hair braid.

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If you usage lacing or a piece of leather here, you have to sew with each other or glue down the end of the lacing.

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It have the right to look a bit an ext professional, however, to cap the ends of the braid v a larger piece of leather. You can do this through a two piece cap if you desire to produce a shame end, or one item folded over to create a level end.

First use glue to the separation, personal, instance strands of the braid, or beat holes in them and sew lock together.

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Then trim the end to a practiced shape.

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cut one or 2 pieces of leather to form the lid you want to create. If you room using one piece, glue the cap down over the finish of the braid, sandwiching the laces, climate use among the punching approaches we"ve learned to punch sewing holes with all 3 layers. If you room making a two item cap, darn the front edge of the lid first, glue it end the braid and also punch the rest of the holes.

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darn the cap onto the braid v a saddle stitch.

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Step 7: add Braided Details to your Designs


I"ve presented you 4 various braid sport that ns hope offer you a good idea the the possibilities of leather braiding and weaving. One of my favorite things about these kinds of approaches is the they produce subtle variations in texture that add a lot of visual interest to a design. I"ve seen some amazingly an innovative versions of these patterns, and also quick search on the net will provide you some an excellent inspiration.

If you"re trying to find some motivation on exactly how to use leather braids, examine out mine Multi useful Leather Bag, and also How to be an Elf rwandachamber.org. I integrated a braid right into the bag style by including a four strand braided strap across the front that holds the flap of the bag in place. And also I provided braids ~ above the headpiece, bracers and belt that the elf costume.

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If you"ve created any kind of braids, or chosen to add one to your project, feel free to short article an i Made it below! and also if girlfriend are in search of some an ext basic leatherwork instruction to aid you complete your leather projects, examine out my totally free Beginning and Intermediate Leatherworking Classes.