How to Make a Friendship Bracelet
by Ann Friedman
Published in WOMANZINE: The CAMP(ING) Issue
1. Think of a friend. Maybe it’s the friend sitting closest to you. Maybe it’s your closest friend from college, the person with whom any conceivable social situation is more fun. Maybe it’s someone you’ve just met who you’re sort of hoping will turn into a bestie. Maybe it’s someone you met at a fiction reading who seemed so awesome you had to grab her wrist and say, “Let’s be friends!” Maybe it’s someone you used to work with, someone you’re so happy to now count as more friend than coworker. Maybe it’s your high-school bestie’s college bestie who now lives up the hill from you and has become your bestie. Maybe it’s your core stoner bro. Maybe it’s a friend from three lifetimes ago who still fits in this one, whenever she manages to make an appearance. Maybe it’s your sister from another mister.
2. Think of the colors he wears a lot. What color her comforter is. What color his walls are painted. Or, like, maybe try and read her aura or something. Those colors! Buy embroidery floss in those colors.
4. Present the bracelet to your friend. She will be thrilled. The need to signify friendship with a physical token tends to dissolve with the slow transition to adulthood, and there is something delicious about wearing a more sartorially acceptable and socially inclusive version of the broken-heart best-friends necklace.
5. Knot it on, tight. The impermanence of the friendship bracelet is what makes it so great. No, you don’t really take it off. It’s meant to get grody after surviving repeated dips in the pool and the ocean and the shower. It’s meant to loosen and fade and curl and fray and gray.
6. Revel in this shared artifact of your friendship, a marker of this moment in time, this summer. Catch a glimpse of it on your friend’s wrist. Smile. Think about that time when and that guy who and that trip where. Instagram it, if you’re so inspired. Definitely gaze at it. Hold hands, maybe! Make another.
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