Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys & Gals (Tutorial)

by Rena Klingenberg.

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

The photo above shows two Safari Leather Bracelets, stacked.

Below are the individual bracelets:

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys & Gals

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys & Gals

These rugged bracelets feel as though you’ve added trinkets and mementos to them while traveling around the world.

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys & Gals

They’re great worn alone or stacked, and are perfect for both guys and gals.

Supplies:

  • Leather cord – 2mm width.
    Length: Your wrist measurement plus 1″ (25mm), then multiply that number x 2. Then if you’ll be using a lot of bulky beads, add another 1″ (25mm) to your bracelet.

    Cord Measurement Example:
    (7″ wrist + 1″) x 2 = 16″.
    Then add an extra 1″ if you’re using a lot of bulky beads.

    Leather cord for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys & Gals

  • An assortment of rustic / rugged / natural beads and other items to string onto both strands of your leather cord.
    These items will need to have a hole size of 4mm or larger to be strung on your doubled leather cord; for example:

    • beads with 4mm hole or larger (acrylic, wood, metal, ceramic, polymer clay)
    • small metal washers
    • small donut beads
    • stack of jump rings / soldered rings
    • cowrie shell beads
    • wire coil beads (I’ll show you how to make these, below)
    • small coins with holes
    • rubber O-rings
    • small rustic / safari-looking metal discs, beads or charms with jump ring

    Beads and trinkets for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys & Gals

  • Bead reamer or ice pick – to clear or enlarge the holes in beads that almost fit on your doubled cord.
  • 2 pieces of wire to bind the ends of your cord – 18 gauge round soft wire OR 18 gauge half-round soft wire.
    You’ll need a 3″ (76mm) piece of this wire for binding the folded end of your leather cord, plus a 4″ (102mm) piece for binding the other end of your cord.
  • Wire to make the hook clasp – 16 gauge round soft wire, 2.75″ (70mm) long.
  • Wire for coil beads – 20 gauge round soft craft wire / Artistic wire, a few inches long.
  • U.S. size 5 knitting needle (or other mandrel for making wire coils with a 5mm hole).
  • Wire cutter.
  • Flat nose pliers.
  • Round nose pliers.
  • Optional: Nylon, plastic, or rawhide hammer and jeweler’s steel block – for flattening and hardening your wire clasp.
    Jeweler's Hammer and Steel Block - Rena Klingenberg

How to Make a
Safari Leather Bracelet:

First let’s make some wire coil beads for your bracelet.

Since I don’t know exactly how much wire I’ll need, here’s how I avoid cutting off too long or too short of a piece:

Instead of starting out by cutting the wire, I just pull the wire directly from the wire spool as I wind it around my mandrel – and then I cut my wire off from the spool when I’m done.

The instructions for each step are below this photo:

How to Make Coiled Wire Beads - Rena Klingenberg

  • Photo 1:
    Lay the end of your wire across your knitting needle or mandrel, leaving a short tail of wire sticking down below. Use your thumb to hold the wire against the mandrel.
  • Photo 2:
    With the fingers of your other hand, hold the long end of your wire. Keeping the wire pulled tight, wind it around the mandrel several times.
  • Photo 3:
    When your coiled wire bead is the desired length, slide it off your mandrel and clip both ends of your wire as close as possible to your coil.
  • Photo 4:
    Your finished coil bead should look like this.

Now it’s time to make the folded loop end of your leather cord.

First, let’s straighten, soften, and distress your leather cord to make it look more rustic.

Use my method for Straightening and Softening Leather Cord – but don’t stop when your cord is straight. Keep running it through the bead until the surface looks wonderfully distressed and aged!

Pick up your leather cord and fold it in half.

Use your flat nose pliers to squeeze down on the folded part of the cord, to help the fold keep its shape:

Folding leather cord for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now we’ll add the wire binding to turn the folded cord into a loop.

Use your flat nose pliers to hold your folded cord as shown in the photo below.

Pick up your 3″ (76mm) piece of 18 gauge round or half-round wire.

Lay the wire across the cord, and use your thumb to hold one end of the wire firmly against the top of your pliers jaws:

Wire wrapping cord end for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

With the fingers of your other hand, hold the long end of your wire. Keeping the wire pulled tight, wind it around the leather cord several times:

Wire wrapping cord end for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Use your wire cutter to trim off both ends of excess wire:

Wire wrapping cord end for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Use your chain nose pliers to squeeze down each cut wire end, so they can’t catch or snag on anything:

Wire wrapping cord end for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now your cord should look like this:

Leather cord for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now it’s time to start stringing your beads and other components onto your leather cord:

Stringing beads for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

On this rustic bracelet style, “less is more” – so instead of filling the entire cord with beads, I recommend using just a small selection of interesting beads and other elements.

If you want your beads to stay together in the middle of the cord instead of sliding around, put a wire coil bead or other tight-fitting bead at each end of your beading:

Stringing beads for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now we’ll turn the open ends of your leather cord into a loop.

Hold the two cord ends together side by side, and trim one end if necessary to make the ends the same length.

Keeping the cord ends side by side, fold about 1″ (25mm) of the ends over onto the rest of the cord.

Use your flat nose pliers to squeeze down on the fold you just made in the cord.

Then hold this folded cord end with your flat nose pliers like this:

Making loop in cord ends for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Now we’ll add the wire binding to turn these folded-over cord ends into a loop.

Pick up your 4″ (102mm) piece of 18 gauge round or half-round wire.

Lay the wire across the cord, and use your thumb to hold one end of the wire firmly against the top of your pliers jaws:

Wire wrapping loop for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

With the fingers of your other hand, hold the long end of your wire. Keeping the wire pulled tight, wind it around the leather cord several times:

Wire wrapping loop for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Use your wire cutter to trim off both ends of excess wire:

Wire wrapping loop for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Use your chain nose pliers to squeeze down each cut wire end, so they can’t catch or snag on anything.

Now each end of your leather cord should have a loop that’s bound together by wire:

Wire-wrapped leather cord loops for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

The last step is to attach the hook clasp.

You can make the simple clasp I’ve used on my Safari Leather Bracelets – see the tutorial here: Easy Wire Hook Clasp Tutorial.

The clasp looks like this:

Hook clasp for Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Twist open the loop on your hook clasp (using the same motion as when you twist open jump rings).

Thread the opened clasp loop through the end of your bracelet that has the double cord ends:

Attaching clasp to Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Twist the clasp loop shut again.

When you wear the bracelet, the hook end of the clasp goes through the leather loop at the opposite end of your cord:

Finished clasp on Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

You can enjoy wearing your Safari Leather Bracelets one at a time:

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Or make a bolder statement by stacking them up your arm:

Safari Leather Bracelet for Guys and Gals - tutorial by Rena Klingenberg

Want to Learn the Basics of
Designing Your Own Wire Jewelry?

Design and Make Artistic Jewelry Components Class In my Design and Make Artistic Jewelry Components video class, you’ll learn how to get great ideas for wire jewelry designs – and then follow my easy system for turning those ideas into successful pieces of jewelry.

By the end of this online video class, you’ll be designing and making your own artistic earwires, clasps, connectors, and pendant bails.

You’ll also learn my tips for making wire jewelry more easily, with more professional looking results.

 

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