Skill Level: Easy
Time Required: 2 hours for headphones
Project Cost: $4, plus the cost of the cord
Kristie started wrapping her cords in embroidery thread to keep them from getting tangled and to make them easily distinguishable from those of her roommates. Now, it's her go-to gift because they can be customized for the person, like this set of headphones for her boyfriend.
• Headphones or another cord
• Multiple colors of embroidery thread
• Super glue
• Measuring tape
- Choose your cord. I usually just start with one I already have, but for my boyfriend's Christmas present, I bought him a new set of headphones. If you are purchasing new, you'll want to take them out of the packaging for a while before you wrap them so that the coil softens, or it will maintain that shape.
- Choose your colors and your design. I have done all one color before, divided the cord in half to do each side a different color, I've even used two pieces of string together to create a two tone design. This time I elected to change the color every two inches, to create a striping effect.
- Start knotting! To begin, tie a normal half knot (that's half of a square knot). If any of you have made a friendship bracelet before, you may know that it is the most basic knot you can make, but when repeated creates a spiral design. To make your first half knot, lay the string behind the cord at a perpendicular angle. The short end of the string should be on the left side, this way, when you cross the right side over to the left to tie it, your long string will end up on the left side of the cord. This first knot is just to tie the string to the cord in the first place.
- Repeat your half knot. Now that you have your long end on the left side and your short end on the right, start repeating your half knot over the short end to tuck it in. This helps prevent any unraveling while using your cord. Cross the long string from the left to the right to create a shape that looks like the number 4 with the cord. Tuck the end of that string up from behind and pull it tight. When repeatedly knotting over an cord that has wires in it, be careful not to pull too tight or the rubber casing could start to bubble under the string and eventually rip and expose the wires. Knot gingerly, the repeated knotting will keep it in place.
- About a half inch to an inch before you want to change colors, lay your new string down along your wire and start knotting the first color over that color. This will affix the second color to the cord without having to add any glue or creating any space between the colors. Be careful not to pull that color too hard before you start knotting it, or it will pull out from under your other knots. After about a half inch of knotting with your new color, you can cut the first color off, that half inch of knots will keep it secure. Change colors as many times as you choose, creating any number of patterns. This is where the measuring tape would come in, if you wanted to create equal segments of color.
- When finishing, knot all the way to the end of the cord and finish with a half knot in the other direction (this makes a square knot). The very last step is to place a drop (ONLY A DROP) of super glue on the last part of the string itself.
Thanks to Kristie for sharing the Wrapped Electronic Cord gift idea.
All this month, Apartment Therapy is featuring homemade gift ideas made and submitted by you, the readers. Check back every day for a new project, or head over here to see all the DIY gift ideas.
(Image credits: Drew Tyson; Drew Tyson)