I like looking at children's craft toys. The tools are made from inexpensive plastic and some have the potential to be useful for adult projects. The tried and true knitting spool for French knitting is a classic example. The Rainbow loom is another tool which I think is ripe for adult exploitation! So I bought one to play with. Warning : it is very addictive!
There is a mini rainbow loom besides the main one. It makes fishtail style bracelets which are so easy to make. I followed the directions which came with the kit. Basically you start with 3 rubber bands with the first one twisted in a figure 8.
Then it is a matter of hooking the bottom one from both sides and releasing the band to the center. Add another band at the top and hook/release the bottom one. Repeat until the desired length,.
I don't know about you but I sometimes forget the color order. So use a tip from Macrame School's video tutorial (which I will discuss below) and line up your colors on a dowel or cylindrical tool. In the case of a 3 color repeat as I did, the color of the release band is the color you need to add at the top afterwards.
Like spool knitting, the work goes through the tube. The handy hook can be used to pull down the work inside the tube. Once it emerges, tugging will do. Rubber bands are cool because you don't have to worry about tension.
I did not finish the bracelet with the plastic C clips from the kit but chose to use 2 jump rings to connect the ends. I also added a charm.
Macrame School on Youtube also shared an intriguing tutorial which was the inspiration behind this post about knitting spool vs mini rainbow loom for making rubber band bracelets.
As you can see from the tutorial, the technique is essentially the same as the tool I used. But instead of just two prongs, the spool knitter has 4. So the resulting fishtale bracelet is much more dense. Cool effect. The instructor did not have a long hook like I had from the kit to pull down the work inside the tube. She solved it neatly!!
The Rainbow loom is not likely to be a passing fad like say, the Cabbage Patch dolls or Tickling Elmo. Remember those? It is, to me, a fun but educational toy much like Lego - encouraging fine motor and spatial skills, creativity and so forth. Key to enduring toys is the application to both genders as well as the simplicity for beginners and challenge for advanced crafters and adults. (see first link below).
Before You Go:
- Not Just for Kids! Rainbow Loom Jewelry Tutorials
- How to Make Your Own Beading Looms
- Rainbow Loom Becomes a Crafting Phenomenon
Original Post by THE BEADING GEM
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