Last night whilst browsing Facebook, I saw an image someone had shared that said something along the lines of "I didn't think my daughter had any of my traits, then she fell over her own feet and I was like Oh! There I am!". Luckily I no longer trip up over my own feet and even more lucky, Top Ender doesn't seem to have inherited that particular trait from me but she has inherited a love of crafting and not actually being that good at it... So when we were asked to review Strand Bands I said yes! Forgetting that we'd be rubbish at it and just thinking that maybe, just maybe we'd finally find a craft we could do.
The idea of the set is to make bracelets, anklets, keychains or even rings using elastic-y bands in fun fashion colours. It is of course going to be huge this Christmas and with an age range of eight plus it's not just the Teen market that is going to be clamouring for it.
The first thing Top Ender and I did was to unwind one of the bands, she had picked a turquoise type colour (it's her favourite colour at the moment, just like mine was when I was her age) and to try to work out what the instructions were saying. Yup, yet again I couldn't understand the instructions.
The main problem was, when you unwind the band you are after you end up with a very long band. Are you supposed to cut this? The packaging says that you can make up to 15 bracelets, with five colours that means each band needs to be cut into three... but it doesn't say anything about cutting the bands or making them wrist sized or anything. So, we took to youtube and eventually found a couple of tutorials that we decided to copy. They seemed to have had smaller bands, so we risked it and cut the long band into thirds and then ended up cutting one of the thirds in half. I have no idea if this is right, but this is what we did.
Tops then followed the instructions on how to make a bracelet using a sort of under through over knot type thing. It was confusing, but I think that's just because Tops only has two hands and not four and I think that's how many you really need!
Eventually Tops got into a rhythm and even added some bead embellishments. She was concentrating so hard that I almost forgot to take a picture, but we staged one as she didn't want you to see her biting her lip and looking pensive!
So, Top Ender finished her bracelet and because we hadn't followed the instructions on the piece of paper we basically bodged a knot for it on the underside of Top Enders wrist. Don't ask to see it, it looks terrible and Top Ender is under strict instructions not to show anyone because it looks so bad.
I had a go afterwards, I still didn't understand the whole thing, but I did find it much easier to do than Top Ender had and quickly made a simple bracelet, but again I've had to bodge the slip knot part of it as again I didn't follow the instructions!
The set we had, Strands Bands Designer Set, has a RRP of £19.99 and despite Top Ender and I being utterly rubbish at it is actually pretty fun.
We were sent the set to review. Tops and I were rubbish at it, but there are some great tutorials on youtube to make some really pretty things and I'm sure once we can hire an eight year old to teach us what to do we'll be great at it.