If there's one craft that just won't die -- and for good reason -- it's the friendship bracelet. Beautiful colors and designs woven twice to indicate an everlasting friendship...what's not to love? If you have some time and yarn or thread on your hands, you can make a good bit of money off friendship bracelets at a garage sale, especially if your materials are already in your possession, making them essentially free.
Friendship bracelets were originally invented and crafted by the native Central and South Americans, and now giving one to someone else indicates your deep affections for them and your desire to preserve and grow the friendship. You may want to do some research into the history of friendship bracelets and keep a brochure or informative laminated paper on your stand so that others can learn about the origin of the bracelet. Who knows -- maybe it'll make them more interested in buying some!
To just get right into making some basic friendship bracelets, you'll need a few essentials. Find yourself a sharp pair of scissors, some hefty tape (for holding the end against a table or chair), and your materials (embroidery floss is usually used, but any sort of thin silk, cotton, yarn, hemp, or linen thread will do). Make sure you have adequate lighting so as not to strain your eyes as you work; friendship bracelet patterns can work your sight pretty hard.
Getting started involves finding the perfect pattern (or patterns, if you want to sell a variety), which can be searched for online with ease. Once you've found a pattern that really catches your eye, decide on which colors you'll use. Set these aside and clip to the proper length for a bracelet. Knot the end (make sure you use the right type of knot, or your bracelet may come undone) and then begin weaving according to the pattern.
You will probably start out slowly, if you've never made friendship bracelets or a similar craft before, so if you get frustrated with your lack of speed, don't give up right away! Just keep at it; eventually your fingers and brain will adjust to the movements and even tune them out. If you need some ways to make your system faster, however, try sitting in different positions to weave, having a friend sit with you and help you along, or putting on a movie. All or none of these things may work for you, but sometimes focusing your mind on something else or giving your arms adequate room to move will be just what you need.
Here are a few extra tips:
- Make bracelets in pairs. Don't make an uneven number of bracelets, as people interested in buying friendship bracelets will likely want to give another to a friend.
- Make bracelets in sets of three or four and advertise them as "the friendship ring bracelets." People may just bite!
- If you get really fast at a specific pattern, keep using it, just switch up the colors.
- Put some beads on the end for a unique touch.
Some of the best friendship bracelet design links can be found at Friendship-Bracelets.net, and a great community has sprung up around this craft. An alternative source of patterns is KnotCool.com, and PeacePattern.info offers a beautiful peace symbol pattern for bracelets for a cause.
When you sell the bracelets, make a big, bold sign proclaiming your wares. Clearly mark the price, but be willing to haggle, if it's worth the sales. If you have any left over, donate them to a school fundraiser or other such organization that can use them. Good luck!
What other crafts would you like to see explained for garage sale selling? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.