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DIY: Braided Headphones

DIY: Braided Headphones

Custom decorate your headphones using friendship bracelet techniques you learned at camp.

Think back to camp and use the friendship bracelet techniques you learned there to dress your tech.


  • 8¼ yards of embroidery floss of each color: gray, coral, mustard, lime green, turquoise, dark green, and cream
  • Ear-bud type headphones
  • Tape (optional)
  • Needle
  • Scissors 


1. Choose two colors of floss (I started with mustard and dark green), fold both lengths in half, and tie them together onto the main part of the headphone cable, before it divides into two. You may find it helpful to tape the divider of the headphone cable onto a work surface to hold it in place while you’re braiding.  
2. Starting with both mustard threads on the left and both green threads on the right, bring the mustard around and over the wire and then under the green. braided headphones step 2 
3. Now bring the green thread under the wire and up through the loop of mustard on the left.  braided headphones step 3
4. Repeat in the other direction so that the mustard thread now on the right goes over the wire and then under the green again, and the green thread goes under the wire and up through the loop of mustard on the right.  braided headphones step 4

5. Pull the threads to tighten the knot.

 braided headphones step 5
6. Repeat steps 2–5 nine more times—you now have 10 rows. Trim off the rest of the mustard, leaving a loose end of about ½ inch. Now add coral: fold the coral in half to find the middle, tie that onto the cable over the green and mustard threads. Work 10 rows in green and coral by repeating steps 2–5, covering the ends of the mustard with the new knots.
7. For the next row, repeat steps 2–5 but reverse the colors for each step. So for example, in step 2, start with both green threads to the right and the coral on the left, then bring the green around and over the wire, then under the coral. Repeat nine more times.

8. Keep working bands of two different thread colors, changing the colors as you like or using the photograph as a guide, until the whole wire is covered.


9. Using a needle, thread the last strands up the through the braid to secure and trim off the ends.


10. Now decorate the earbud cables. Take your first color (I used cream) and tie the end of the floss to one of the wires. Trim the short end. Starting with the floss on the left, take the floss over and around the wire, and then over itself. Repeat over and over to create a spiral effect. To change color, tie the new color around the cable and the previous floss. I used mainly cream floss, switching to a different color at intervals to create stripes. Thread the last threads up through the braid using the needle, and trim off any ends. Repeat with the second earbud cable.

braided headphones step 10 


dress your tech cover

Dress Your Tech by Lucy Hopping with photography by Holly Jolliffe
is published by Cico Books.


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Lucy Hopping, an art and craft product developer in the toy industry, designs and develops kits to teach children various crafts. She is the author of Loopy Loom Rubber Band Animals, Dress Your Tech, and more.

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