Twisting Multi-Strands.

Q: Hi, I'm trying to make a 3-strand necklace for a Christmas gift, duplicating a necklace I bought. The strands are spiraled. I got the strands beaded, but I don't know how to spiral it. I tried just twisting, but it immediately untwists, even when the ends are knotted together. There must be a trick to it, got any ideas?

A: I don't know how you are ending this necklace, but I do recognize the problem! You might try braiding instead - waaay back in 'B&B', there were instructions on braiding strands already attached at both ends. Basically, you take the end of the bundle through the gaps between the strands. This does come undone eventually, but stays pretty well. You may simply have to leave it as 3 loose strands, and twist the necklace before fastening the clasp when you wear it. I've seen necklaces where the beaded strands are a bit longer than 2x the finished length, and the ends are tied together. You hold the ends of the looped strands, twist them together, and then add the clasp which hooks through the loops at both ends of the twisted strands, then snaps shut. In this case, it is the clasp that keeps the strands twisted together. When I was a little kid, we used to do something similar with yarn. We would cut half the number of strands that you wanted in your neckalce or bracelet, making sure that they were a bit more than double the length desired for the finished product. Tie them all together at one end. Attach this end to something that won't move or twist (or you can get someone to hold that side). Then start twisting and twisting and twisting. Twist the strings until they refuse to twist any more, then CAREFULLY put one finger at the mid-point, and fold the super twisted string in half. The two ends will curl together, making a nice twisted "corkscrew"-type strand. Finish as desired. I hope this is what you were talking about. Try this out with four or five strands of yarn, and see if that's what you wanted.