OK. Here it is. I thought this up the other day, but maybe it’s been done before, so let me know if you’ve see it or something like it. This is the one I initially did, but I’ll do another one below with 2 different colours to make it easier to see the process.
Basically, it’s a weave that you can undo very quickly, and doesn’t take too long to build, after you get the idea for what’s important in doing it. It doesn’t stretch too much at all, and is scaleable, so you could make a braclet, a door mat, or some sweet sheets for your bed, if you’ve got some time and 10,000′ of extra paracord.
OK. To make this belt you’ll need:
1.) About 28 inches per inch of finished belt(so for my 49″ belt it has about 120′ of cord in it),
2.) A belt buckle, and,
3.) Somewhere to work, like a couple bar clamps and a bungie cord on a table. I have also made a bracelet with this pattern by clamping the non-buckle end(…or ‘other’ buckle end, I guess…) to the table and just keeping it pulled towards myself. Whatever works, maybe even hanging it from the top of a door might work. Here’s the rig I worked on for the demo(which is obviously shorter than the actual belt, for demo purposes):
Now! This belt will shrink about 20% from it’s initial length, so for mine I started out at 59″, and it ended up at 49″. THE BUNGIE CORD IS IMPORTANT! The way to end up with a nice tight weave is to let the belt shorten as you weave it. The bungie holds it in place, just tight enough for you to work on.
For my belt I used 8 down-and-back runs to get a finished product just over 1 1/2 inches wide. To do this, I ran the cord off the spool, through the buckle, down to the bar-clamp and back, 8 times, then tied the end off to the buckle like this(or you could use a small zip-tie);
After you get your runs in place and all even, and if you need to, (as in you only have 100′ lengths but need a belt longer than 40″), this would be a good place to tie your two pieces together;
To start weaving, you’ll want to get ahold of a pen or a rod of some kind, something to feed back and forth between the runs of cord. I found that something with a flat vs pointed end works well. Feed it back and forth between the runs to cross the lines all over to the other sides and push it firmly towards the buckle. The way to get the weave nice and tight is to pack these crossovers towards the buckle, getting as many as you can into the length of your belt. You can grab the two groups of lines every once in a while after you’ve crossed them, and pull them apart to get them nice and tight. You’ll probably have to check the end you’re not working on almost every time, to be sure your lines don’t get crossed or messed up.
Next, feed a loop of cord up between the lines to the left of the pen, then flip it past the pen to the right;
Pull the pen out, weave it back between the lines the other way again, and feed another loop up through;
Hook the first loop over the second and snug it up. Try and watch whic way the first loop is twisted, so it lies flat on the top of the belt. Do not worry about the tension right now because you”ll have to go back and tighten it after you get to the end and take it off the rig anyway. All you need to do at this point is get as many crossings in as you can by packing them in towards the buckle.
Keep going with this,
When you get close to the end, it will get harder to the point where you’ll have to remove it from the rig and work on the table;
Try and keep it tight to the right. The pen actually helps here, since you can feed the loop through if you tuck it into the end of the pen.
This is how I finished mine off, but I’m not 100% sold on how I did it, so whatever you think looks good will probably work.
Don’t cut it yet! Yon need to go back to the buckle end and snug up the crossing loops. Start working the line through, maybe a little tighter than it will be finished, and pull the belt out straight after each crossing loop is snugged up. If your belt looks like it’s curving towards the top, maybe your tension is a bit too much, so loosen off a bit.
That’s it! After you do it once or twice, a belt takes maybe an hour and a half or less.
Here’s a bracelet I made too following the same pattern.
Maybe I’ll work on those sheets next…let me know if you have any problems or ideas!