DIY Middle Earth Dwarf Braids

Middle-Earth Dwarf Braids. Photo by Lisa Kay Tate.
Middle-Earth Dwarf Braids.
Photo by Lisa Kay Tate.

What would a birthday celebration for Bilbo and Frodo Baggins be without some very rowdy, yet follically savvy dwarves as guests?

In honor of Hobbit Day, here’s a Middle-Earth fashion accessory that can be made into key chains, backpack bling, and anything else that needs a little Khazâd* charm.

If you can braid, then you can make these.

What you need:
• Wool or mohair textured yarn, preferably earth tones of brown, grey or black (I used a brand called Charisma).
• Silver or bronze-looking beads, particularly those with a fairly large hole and rustic patterns
• Simple hair clips, bobby pins, key rings, zipper pulls or any other item you want to attach to the braid.

braid how-to
Step One: Make a Loop. Step Two: Comb and braid. Step Three. Add beads.

Take two long strands of yarn, and cut them twice the length you want them. Fold them in half and place the loop end around the hair clip, key ring, etc. Take the other ends and pull them through the loop end.

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Ready to wear to any Hobbit party.

Unravel the yarn, and very, very, gently, comb the yarn so it begins to resemble hair. I recommend using yarn over those fine-textured hair extension strands you can buy almost anywhere now, because Dwarves’ hair is quite a bit coarser then regular human hair. It’s practically like an animal’s mane, to be honest. If you want to look more Elven, however, go ahead and try this with the extensions. Now, divide the “hair” into three parts and braid away.

Take an unfolded paper clip or some beading wire and fold it over the end of the braid, leaving about an inch of hair at the bottom.  Pull this through one or more beads and pull the beads as far up the braid as you want. For the bottom bead, only pull the hair far enough through so the hair remains “folded over” out of the bottom.

Gently remove the paper clip or wire and cut off any excess hair sticking out of the top of the braid. A small drop or craft glue (or super glue, if you aren’t working with kids) placed at the base of the bead will help hold it in place, although these are actually pretty snug and secure if the right-sized bead is used.

Make as many as you need and share them with at least 13 other friends before leaving the Shire. Adventure awaits…right after second breakfast.

* Another name for the Dwarf race…but you already knew that, didn’t you!

Lisa Kay Tate is a veteran feature writer with 20 years experience in newspaper, magazine and freelance writing. In addition to serving as Associate Editor for her local arts and entertainment guide, El Paso Scene, she has been a regular contributor to the site ihogeek.com and maintains her own blogsite at lisathegeekmom.wordpress.com. She and her husband, writer/photographer Rick, live on the edge of "New Texico" where they keep busy raising their two geeklings and sharing space with their dog, Sirius Black, and cat, Loki.