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Kumihimo (Japanese Braiding)

  KUMIHIMO (coo-me-he-mo) - Japanese Braiding 

KUMIHIMO which means “gathering of thread” is the ancient Japanese art of braid making, the technique being thousands of years old. The traditional tool looked like a little wooden stool with a hole in the middle and also wooden tension bobbins. 

The Kumihimo disc is a fast, simple, easy to learn and inexpensive way to try this braiding method, using the many beautiful patterns available. The disc is light, very versatile and you can take it anywhere, even on a plane as there are no sharp objects.  A great variety of threads, yarns, cords, ribbon and even ½” strips of fabric may be used in this technique.  As long as the yarns fit into the slots on the disc you can use them.  The yarns can be smooth or textured and beads or a focal pendent can also be added. A smooth yarn will show the shape of the braid where a textured yarn i.e. eyelash yarn or ribbon will show the colour of the braid.    If you like a yarn but it seems too thin, use more strands of thread to get the thickness you like.  The technique has a great number of applications such as jewellery, bag handles, belts and embellishments; just let your creativity run wild. There are two types of discs;  the ROUND DISC will make round braids, great for jewellery and bag handles - the SQUARE PLATE will make flat braids also for jewellery, embellishments and bookmarks. 


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