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Kumihimo 1.0

Sebastián Urresti

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Hello All!

Here is what I promise a few weeks ago, the first Kumihimo tutorial. I want to say that this tradition is very rich and the only thing that I want to do is to share the little I know about with all of you.

First we need the stool that is called Maru Dai. Here is a drawing of what can be simply constructed, the first is not mine but Stephen Myhre design and can be placed with a C-clamp to any table, the other is an adaptation that I made from the original that has four legs and a base, this one has only two attached to a rectangular base long enough to be also attached to a table with a C-clamp. (I´ll send a photo of both thing soon). The circle can be 4" wide and 1" for the middle hole, that small Maru Dai will be useful to make 4, 6 and some of the simpler 8 strand braids.


Once that we have the Maru Dai we need the Tama, or bobbins were the thread is placed. There are some photos in the Mini Studio section. If you don´t have this you can put the strand around a piece of hard cardboard with an extra-wight attached to it cut with the outter shape of the Tama, that is with a waist. The important thing is that the four, six, eight, etc. pieces have the SAME weight. Once you have all the pieces you need to find a counter-weight that is equivalent to the 45% of the total weight. More weight = a loose braid, less weight = a tight braid. The counter-weight can be made with fishing weights. ;)

What I honestly do is to wrap around the Tama as much fiber as I can, then I tie the four ends and the counter-weight and star braiding as long as I want, once I reach the desired lenght I cut the braid and tie its ends. You will have to study the weights according to the fiber that you are braiding, sometimes if the fiber is too hard you will need a little more than 45%. :(

WRITE DOWN EVERYTHING! Or use your memory... :P

The base of Kumihimo are clockwise and anti-clockwise movements and all the infinit combinations of them.

Here is the first braid called Maru Yatsu that is made with 4 strands.


Red is step 1. North dot will be right hand, South dot will be left hand.

Black is step 2. West dot will be right hand, East dot will be left hand.

Now to finish we have the colour arragenment and here are the folkorical combinations:


The first is a vertical pattern. The second is a spiral. The third will make a spot that goes in a spiral too. The fourth is a three colour spot with two vertical lines.

Well, I hope that you all enjoy this. Any doubt, please ask.



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Hi Doug!

That´s a wonderful solution. Next I´ll post how to wrap the thread to the bobbin. A question here: with a little heat can a waist be made in the canister to hold better the fiber? With this I mean an even waist in all of them?

Thanks for the solution,


P.S.: My Tama are made from a dense argentinian wood called Algarrobo ( Prosopis alba ) Maple is hard to find or too expensive ;)

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Hello Folks!

Here´s the way that a fiber is attached to the bobbin. I hope that you all understand the process, my digital camera is traveling with my Dad, so next time I send some photos of the process, meanwhile ENJOY!

Once that all the fibers are tied to the counter-weight ( or hold them with your teeth as I do ;) ) follow the instructions:

Step 1: Hold the bobbim with your left hand place thumb and finger of the right hand on the warp.

Step 2: Pass the bobbin away to form a loop.

Step 3: Flip your hand right and pass the bobbin through the loop. Pull and that´s it, DONE!


I hope that you understand the process, is not hard to do and once you´ve learned it is easy.



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