This is an index to all the loop braiding tutorials on my blog. (Tutorials will open in a separate window.) Not all my posts are tutorials…Go to the Loop Braiding homepage to browse down my recent posts, or to this index/ list of all my past posts.
Videos in my tutorials tend to be in slow-mo with a lot of talking. The more recent tutorials have timelines listed below any video to help you skip some of my verbiage and go to the point you want to see. I listed the tutorials below in order of difficulty – except for some extra videos teaching fun and easy spiral braids that I made for another website. Those video links are here, near the bottom of this page (2-loop braids, and spiral braids of 4 to 10 loops).
Btw, my header photo is just a random photo of a few of my braids. I haven’t made tutorials for all the braids in the header, only the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 7th braids from the right: 7-loop square braid, 8-loop spiral, 10-loop double braid (solid rectangle), and Lace Dawns. All are listed below, along with tutorials for many more braids not shown in the header photo. There is info about all the header photo braids here.
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Super-easy 3-loop braids. Downloadable pdf photo-tutorial and several videos. An even easier intro to fingerloop braiding than my original “Start here” tutorial below.
Start Here: 5-loop braids, both square and flat. Videos, photos, text. If these 5-loop videos are too slow-paced for you, learn from the faster 7-loop video below (just omit the lowest loop on each hand, and use the ring finger to braid with rather than the little finger). In fact, if you’ve already learned the square, flat, and divided 3-loop braids above, you may be able to learn fingerloop braiding with 5 loops just by looking at the diagram at the beginning of the tutorial.
Continue Here: 7-loop braids. Video tutorial showing the 7-loop version of the basic square, flat, and divided fingerloop braid introduced in the “Start Here” tutorial. This video is a little faster-paced than my 5-loop videos. Shows all 3 braid variations in one video (square braid, flat braid, and divided braid).
[9-loop square braids can be learned after learning square braids of 5 and 7 loops]
Bicolor loops. When each loop is made out of two different colors—two different yarns tied together—you get a lot more possible color patterns and types of color patterns than with single-color loops. The photo-tutorial shows how to make three different bicolor patterns for square braids of 5 loops or more. Many other color patterns are possible, especially when you mix bicolor loops with single-color loops. I use only two colors in the photo-tute, but you can go on from there to adding more colors.
Color-pattern planning: How to arrange loops on your fingers to get the color-order you want in the braid. NEW: I just added the color set-ups for almost all the braids shown in photos in this post (many square and flat 5 to 7-loop braids).
Some more square braid color-patterns for square braids of 7-11 loops, some adaptable to 5-loop braids as well.
Bracelet tutorial for a 7-loop square braid, also how to braid one of my favorite square braid color-patterns: “Chevrons across Bicolor Stripes”—a mix of bicolor and single-color loops. This tutorial teaches 2 great color patterns for a 7-loop square braid, and some bracelet tips, but not the basic braiding moves. Learn the braiding moves from the 7-loop “Continue here” tutorial above.
New technique: Color-linking
Color-linking can create amazing braid patterns! This video-based tutorial teaches 2 different types of color-linking in a 7-loop flat braid (also some 9-loop set-ups). Learn 7-loop flat braids first (see above). Color-linking adds a new step to the braiding procedure.
A very cool and complex 17th C. “spanish” braid of 7 loops
Makes a rectangular, 2-layer braid—about as thick as a 4-loop square braid, but twice as wide. [This braid can be made in flat and hollow forms as well, just like the double braids below.] Video, text, photos. Learn the 7-loop square braid first (see the “Continue here” tutorial above). The video teaches one possible color pattern, and several other great color patterns set-ups for this braid are given below the videos, see photos. This 7-loop braid is the base, component braid of the doubled 14-loop letterbraid—a way for a team of two braiders to braid words!
How to make a flatter, less convex version of the ‘Spanish’ braid
The video shows a different way to turn the loops during the loop transfers. Less slo-mo—better to learn the braid from the previous link above. Also shows how to unbraid the spanish braid—this is very useful for correcting mistakes, which is what I’m doing in the video.
How to use Gary Mitchell’s online pattern-planner for the 7-loop spanish braid above. Two posts—one introduces the planner and shows several sample charts, and the second has a video showing how to follow a chart once you have generated it from the planner. It also has a photo showing several different color-patterns you can make using the planner.
Douglas Grant’s round version of the 7-loop spanish braid (or not?) Great variation of the above braid—perhaps different enough not to be quite “spanish.” Makes a firm, round braid. Invented or discovered by a blog reader who named it the Spiaggian Eagle braid after one of its color patterns. Text instructions for two alternative braiding methods. Several color pattern variations shown and taught. I love this braid!
Video tutorial for Doug’s round 7-loop spanish braid (see above). Also teaches a new color pattern for the braid (several other color patterns are taught in my first post on this braid.)
Team braiding a double braid: Video of two first-time braiders making and demoing a 10-loop double braid together. A double braid is two 5-loop square braids connected together to form one larger, rectangular-shaped braid!
Also a photo-tutorial on the crucial move that connects the individual 5-loop braids of the two braiders—the loop-exchange move.
Double braid tutorials, part 1. 6 to 10-loop Rectangular braids:
My patented (just kidding!) solo-braider method for making the classic 2-person loop braid taught above. This is really 3 different tutorials: one for a 6-loop version, one for 8 loops and two videos on the full 10-loop version, the only one that requires using thumbs (as taught in my 9-loop square braid tutorial below).
Double braids, part 2: 6 to 10-loop Flat double braids. Also, some great color-manipulation tricks for making borders and other lengthwise designs. (color-linking in two different forms) A separate no-sound video for each skill taught, 8 and 10-loop braids. No video for the 6-loop version. If you’ve learned the 6-loop double braid from the previous tutorial, follow the 8-loop videos and just omit the loop on the little finger.
Double braids, part 3: 6 to 10-loop Hollow double braids. No video. (if you’ve learned the flat double braid above, you won’t need another video to learn the hollow double braid.) Instructions for several different color-patterns of 6-10 loop braids, plus photos of examples of up to 18 loops. Keyhole-type openings in hollow braids, bead and disk inserts, bicolor patterns, color-linking.
More 8-loop double braid color-patterns
Also text instructions for another double braid shape—the side-slit rectangle braid. Photos and accompanying set-up instructions of color patterns for 11 flat double braids, and for one solid, one hollow, and 2 side-slit rectangle double braids.
5-loop introductory tutorial on Kute-uchi (hand-held) loop braids
2 methods for making square and flat braids with hand-held loops. 2 videos, braid photos. I demo these braids using 5 loops, but you can use many more after you get used to the moves. Kute-uchi is an ancient Japanese hand-held loop braiding method, which most likely evolved from finger-held loop braiding.
New Kute-Uchi (text-only) tutorial: the Genji-uchi braid, and the closely related Pseudo-Genji-uchi (of 4 to 36 loops). I added this text tutorial onto the end of my original kute-uchi tutorial. These two braids are made using the same two braiding moves taught in the original kute-uchi videos, so I’m hoping they can be learned from those videos plus my text explanation of the color set-up and order of the two braiding moves.
Easy-to-intermediate ‘no-thumbs; single loop per finger’ braids:
All the tutorials above (most contain instructions for more than one braid), also my Spiral Braid videos, near bottom of this page.
There are other known loop braids that don’t require thumbs or a partner. See:
Medieval Silkwerke, Cindy Myers’ site
Fingerloop Braiding, Lois Swales and Zoe Kuhn-Williams site.
(Both sites also include instructions for team braids, requiring more than one braider)
If you have trouble with their text directions for a particular braid, write in the name of the braid(s) in the form below, and I’ll add them to my video queue. The form allows multiple suggestions:
(I update poll requests I’ve received here)
Terminology—not a tutorial, this is one of my info pages, defines terms used in instructions, and also braiding/ weaving structural terminology
9-loop braids: (square and flat braids, also info on unorthodox variations) Requires using thumbs. Go ahead and try 9-loop braids before you are lightning-fast at making 7-loop braids! [rationale in footnote here] Two videos, photos, text. The way I demo using thumbs is the basis for how I braid all braids of more than 8 loops. Miscellaneous info in the “notes” section following the tutorial: historical references to 9-loop braids, current revival of loop braiding, how I found out about loop braiding.
Unorthodox braids of 9 loops: In the notes section following the main 9-loop tutorial. Text instruction for 2 unorthodox (UO) braids, and how to come up with more on your own. Unorthodox braids deserve a whole series of posts/tutorials that I haven’t gotten to yet. Instead I have an info page about them here. The simplest unorthodox loop braid is actually the most common loop braid worldwide. It was called the Broad lace of 5 bows—i.e. loops—in the old English manuscripts about loop braiding.
Lace Dawns and Lace Piol Alternate method to the one taught in the medieval manuscripts. This is a much quicker way to make these 8-loop braids (if you are used to using thumbs, as taught in my 9-loop tutorial). Video, text.
Unbraiding, and fixing mistakes: Unbraiding is the only way to go back and fix a mistake. The video shows how to unbraid a 3-loop braid. There’s also a link to a video demoing how to unbraid a 7-loop braid—the same principle holds for 5-loop braids. Nine and 11-loop braids are unbraided a bit differently, I give a text description of how to unbraid them, and also how to work your way through undoing a mistake, once you have unbraided back to it.
Ways to set down your loops in the middle of braiding.
Video, photos, text.
Ways to braid LONGER loop braids –up to several feet or yards/meters (first part of post). Photos, text.
Ways to start a braid with no ends hanging out/ smooth starts (second part of post). Text, photos, one video, more to come.
11-loop braids. (square, flat, also info on unorthodox variations) 2 videos, photo-tutorial, text. Requires holding a loop on each thumb and 2 loops on the little fingers. Wait til 9-loop braiding moves are automatic before moving on to 11 loops.
[The way I show of dealing with the extra loop on the little finger (along with loops on the thumbs) is the basis for how I make almost all braids of more than 10 loops, including double braids of 12-18 loops, the 14-loop letterbraid, and most of the braids in my header photo.]
13-loop square braids [new, as of 4/20/2013] (flat, and unorthodox as well, depending on how you perform the loop transfers). This is a bare-bones, no-photo, no-video how-to. (I’m hoping it might not need its own video—once you’ve learned the 11-loop braid, this one is very similar.) In the Comments section following my 11-loop tutorial. Learn the 11-loop braid first, add two more loops only after 11-loop braiding moves are automatic.
[new] Notes on my method for making the 14-loop Letterbraid as a solo-braider. Not a full tutorial. General strategies, plus a detailed description of the two inner loop transfers—the transfers involving the 3 loops on the d-finger. First learn the 7-loop Spanish braid, also how to use thumbs and multiple loops on the little fingers, and also my method for making 10-loop double braids as a solo braider, using thumbs as well as fingers.
I am open to video requests (even for loop braids that aren’t on my blog) Leave a note under “comments” below, or email me, or make an anonymous request through the poll above. If the braid you want to learn is one of my braids with a lot of loops, be sure to learn its prerequisite braids first: if it has more than 8 loops, my 9-loop square braid tutorial is a necessary prerequisite. The 11-loop square braid is a necessary prerequisite before learning braids of more than 10 loops. And the 13-loop square braid will be very helpful to learn before braids of 14-18 loops.
Videos not yet in posts:
These are videos that I haven’t written posts for on this blog. They were some of my first videos, made to accompany a series of photo-tutorials that I made for the Braids_and_Bands yahoo discussion group. Btw, all those pdf file photo-tutorials can be downloaded from the group’s files section (though you do have to join the group to access the files, which may take a day or two). The photo-tutorial documents have photos of each step, plus a nice picture of a project.
My 3-loop videos used to be listed here, but now they can be found in my 3-loop tutorial along with their downloadable (pdf) photo-tutorial.
2-loop braids, right-handed:
2-loop braids, left-handed:
Spiral Braids of 4 to 10 loops (lace bend rounde)
6-loop Spiral braid, part 1 , right handed, incl 3 different ways to exchange w/out turning the loop—results in no torque to the braid (a neater braid)
6-loop Spiral braid, part 2, right handed, adding a loop into the braid
8-loop Spiral braid, part 1, right handed (lace bend round of viii bowes)
8-loop Spiral braid, part 2, right handed (including vertical/ lengthwise stripes patterns. This non-spiral type of color pattern can be made with any number of loops, from 4 on up)
8-loop Spiral braid, part 3, right handed (including a divided spiral braid, which makes 2 little spiral braids at the same time—great for a loop in the braid!—the loop itself will be of spiral braids. This can only be done with the 8-loop spiral braid.)
10-loop Spiral braid, right handed (Uses thumbs. This video is also part of the “you CAN put your loops down” tutorial, since it demos how to park loops on a big comb when stopping in the middle of a braid—see beginning and end of video.)
4-loop Spiral braid, left handed
6-loop Spiral braid, left handed
8-loop Spiral braid, left handed (Shows 2 things not covered in the right-handed videos: how to make the spiral pattern change direction, and how to unbraid a spiral braid for several cycles. Skip to halfway or so through the video, to just where I start to join up the mid-braid loop I’ve made in the braid.)
Check out Dominic’s bracelet —a ONE-color spiral braid. This makes a great texture, I have never tried this. Thanks, Dom!
Using 2 different sizes of thread or yarn for the two colors of the spiral is a fun effect, see the second braid from the right in my header/ banner photo at the top of the page. The 10-loop video shows this, but it can be done with any of the spiral braids.
“Spiral” braids can also have other color patterns than the spiral one, including lengthwise striping, a spiral with 2 stripes going through it, various dots, and a pattern very much like the classic “Grene Dorge” or Barleycorn pattern. To get other color patterns, vary the way you set the colors on the fingers at the start of braiding.
For lengthwise stripes, set up the colors on the fingers so that at least one finger on each hand will be exchanging the same color loop with its “partner” finger on the other hand. (in other words, for any two fingers that are loop-exchanging ‘partners’ on opposite hands: If they both have the same color loops, there will be a lengthwise stripe of that color on opposite sides of the braid.)
* “Loop braiding” vs. “Finger loop braiding”
I usually use the term “loop braiding”. But I use “fingerloop braiding” here and there as well, so online searches for that term will find this site. “Loop-manipulation braiding”, and “finger-held loop-manipulation braiding” are more technical terms. (Masako Kinoshita shortens the latter to f-h l-m braiding on her site L-MBRIC.) I’ve occasionally seen the word “braiding” dropped leaving “loop manipulation” alone, but to me, that takes away the most important word!