Sunday, April 13, 2014

Paracord & Day of the Dead Sugar Skulls..

Schmuckatelli Co. sent me a few samples of their newest, yet unnamed skull beads(now called Aquilo), along with a note, "The bead is based on "island" art sugar skulls that are also commonly seen in Day of the Dead celebrations and we will be releasing it very soon.". They have some nice detail work to them, and look good in both the pewter and the black oxide finishes.

I was recently asked about doing some thick sized paracord wallet chains, and I suggested that they give spool knitting a try to create something like they were looking for.

I tied one using just two of the three nails/pegs for a square shaped lanyard, using camo green paracord that I had on hand, adding in the two black oxide skulls, one at each end, tying lanyard knot and loops at both ends, adding a black snap hook on one end, and leaving the other loop end for running a belt through it, or as shown attached to a biker/trucker wallet through the lanyard/chain hollow rivet.

I started with about 20 feet of paracord, and trimmed off a little over a foot of excess, and the finished wallet lanyard is about 30 inches long. I'm a big fella, so I like having the longer length to cover the real estate between my belt and pockets, you can certainly make them shorter or longer to fit your needs. ;)

I used the same spool I'd made with nails/PVC section(1.25" diameter)/epoxy/electrical tape, working the cord with a clay stylus, and shared an example photo of a three peg spool knitted neck lanyard to give folks an idea of how large that can actually get.

I also tied a couple of pocket knife lanyard/fobs with the pewter sugar skull beads, one with un-gutted black paracord shown attached to a Kershaw Nerve, and the other with gutted black and camo green paracord, with the added 1.4mm cord Gaucho knot, attached to my Spyderco Salt I.

The black lanyard was tied with a series of two-strand stopper knots(ABoK #778), each tightened and worked up close to the previous one.  The black/green one was tied starting with a square crown sinnet, added a wall knot, then did a bit of round crown sinnet, another wall knot, and more square crown knotting to finish.  I went back and added the Gaucho knot over the center round section.

I made a wrist lanyard with the last skull bead, using some zombie virus pattern paracord.  With camo and multi-colored versions of paracord, it can make it hard to see any decorative type pattern of the knots(, so I usually either combine it with solid colors, or just use a simpler knot like the extended Matthew Walker knot.  I took a few example photos of using it as a flashlight lanyard, a camera wrist strap, and EDC key chain lanyard.

And I've had some navy blue 1/16" Type I dummy/accessory cord that I'd bought over a year ago gathering dust, so I made a neck/ID badge lanyard using some of it, with one of the skull beads.

Here's the link to the Schmuckatelli Co. Facebook page.


Tigermask said...

Hi David. Fantastic work as always. I'm hoping you could help me out regarding a link to a tutorial for 2 (or more) pass gaucho knots. From what I've been able to find on the net, they're dissimilar to turksheads in that it isn't simply a matter of following the working end around as many times as required. (Or is it? I'm not sure as the tutorials I've come across have just left me confused!) The single pass gaucho I've gotten down thanks to your youtube tutorial but I've been unable to find anything with similar clarity for multiple passes. Many thanks from a most appreciative follower.

Stormdrane said...

@Tigermask, Since you have the Gaucho knot Turk's head interweave down, the three pass Gaucho knot is just another step working beyond that knot as a base for the three pass version.

I don't know if Bud Brewer's tutorial for it is currently on the site, you can sign up/register and look through the 'Files' section for tutorials.

I can give you the run list for making a three pass Gaucho once you've tied the base 5 lead 4 bight Turk's head knot, and then tie in the Gaucho interweave that you're familiar with. From there you again take your working end over and to the left side of the standing end, like you did with the Gaucho, and follow this run list:

UP - U2 O2 U2 O3
DOWN - U2 O2 U3 O3
UP - U2 O2 U3 O3
DOWN - U2 O3 U3 O3
UP - U2 O3 U3 O3
DOWN - U3 O3 U3 O3

And now you're back at the starting end. Hope that helps. ;)

Tigermask said...

Many thanks sir! I'll attack the 3 pass gaucho later today. Many thanks for the reminder about KHWW. It's been recommended before, but paying them a visit always slipped my mind. Signed up today and it looks like an invaluable collection of resources.
Thanks again, and have yourself a splendid day.

The Wren King said...

Would you by chance have a walk through video of that blue ID lanyard? :)

Stormdrane said...

@The Wren King, I don't have a start to finish tutorial/walk-thru for it.

It's just 3-peg spool knitting with the 1/16" type I accessory/dummy cord made to desired length, bring the start and end strands together and tied a lanyard knot, added skull bead, then ran both strands around the snap hook attachment and tied a king cobra stitch/doubled Solomon bar/Portuguese sinnet in the space between the bead and the snap hook, tucking then trimming the ends under the knot work to finish.

I worked from a long hank, so I don't have to measure out a specific amount to work with, but it's probably around 40 feet for that type of cord with the neck lanyard project.

I make the neck lanyard knitted section about 36" long and have a couple of feet of cord at the start and end left to do the other knot work with.

The Wren King said...

Watching you do this and not being able to duplicate it = Frustration lol.