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Picture of Leather Mystery Braid

I was fascinated by the mystery braid leather cuffs so decided to learn how to make one.

You will need.


  • A piece of leather about 1 to 2 inches longer than your wrist. I used some veg tan shoulder.
  • A press stud or snap


  • A cutting board
  • A sharp knife
  • A metal rule or straight edge
  • A punch and setting tool for the snap


  • Leather dye / finish

Step 1: Cut a Strip of Leather

Picture of Cut a Strip of Leather

Cut a strip of leather to your desired width. I did mine at about 3/4 of an inch.

I always start with a long straight edge and create a clean edge on my leather to work from then carefully measure and cut the strip. If you have a strap cutter, that will make this even easier but if not, a knife and metal rule work just fine.

Alaskan Bev5 months ago
I voted! Great job, thanks. We've made countless mystery braid bracelets, etc., at Boy Scout camp. It's amazing how fast those kids can do these; they'll be finishing half a dozen of them and be off doing some other project while I'm still working in my first one.
These were the standard woggle when I was a Scout back in the 70's, rather than one bought from a Scout shop I used to get the lads who came up from Cubs to the Scouts or kids who were joining fresh and put in my patrol to make one of their own.
I was fortunate enough to be friendly with the local saddler who would give me all sorts of left over leather for them to use up so quite a lot of mums aunts & sisters were gifted with bangles & chokers too.
serhardt (author)  Nostalgic Guy5 months ago
Fantastic to teach young people that there are alternatives to going to the shops for something manufactured and that they can make something that they can use / wear and be proud of, often without a lot of tools or expensive materials. Even better if there is a local business willing to provide leftovers / off cuts:-)
serhardt (author)  Alaskan Bev5 months ago
Thanks, What a great activity for scout camp!
I just love these bracelets! Thanks for sharing it :)
serhardt (author)  Penolopy Bulnick5 months ago
Thanks :-)
midbay5 months ago
Buckskin is a synthetic tear resistant paper. It's what Levi uses in place of leather waist/length patches on the back of jeans as it takes print well, is washable, and has the look and feel of leather.
serhardt (author)  midbay5 months ago
That would be interesting to try!
AjR335 months ago
That looks like a Turks Head knot :-)
Alaskan Bev AjR335 months ago
No, it's really a whole different knot from a Turk's head. I've made over a hundred of those. I used to teach them to my high school students during free time; they loved them, too.
serhardt (author)  AjR335 months ago
I hadn't heard of a Turks Head knot but followed your link and it definitely does.
My Dad made me one of these out of deerskin, not as a bracelet, just as a flat braid, many, many years ago and I was fascinated by it, but was never able to duplicate it. He passed away and took the secret with him. Thanks for explaining the magic behind the braid. I just have to try this.
serhardt (author)  just_another_maker5 months ago
Glad it brought good memories of your dad, have fun having a go at making one!
Alex in NZ5 months ago
Really nice 'Ible! I read about these in Kryten's autobiography, but despite repeated tries in paper, I never managed to get it to work. Thank you for sharing your solution :-)
serhardt (author)  Alex in NZ5 months ago
Many thanks, took my a few dos and undos the 1st couple of times. I think dying the leather helps to see what was happening. Paper may be quite challenging as it doesn't have the strength or flexibility of leather, a scrap of fabric may be easier if you want to practice before cutting leather. Good luck !!!