How to tie a basic Three Strand Turkshead

A Turkshead is the nautical word for a Braid woven into a circle without ends. Another word for braid is "Sennit." A braid or sennit is simply weaving together three or more strands or groups of strands (as in hair). Fair Winds design offers many turkshead designs. Here we will learn how to tie the simplest turkshead, a three strand turkshead.

For a photo tour of weaving a four strand turkshead [4].

Step 1 Select a piece of cord, or small rope, or a leather thong. 

Wrap the cord around your left hand from left to right and from bottom to top then around the back of the hand returning to the front. 

On the palm again, cross over the first pass of the cord from right to left.

Setp 2 Wrap the cord around the back of the hand agian. 

This time, come back to the front between the first and second wraps. 

Cross over the second wrap from left to right. 

Then, tuck the cord under the first wrap going from the outside of the knot toward the inside.

Step 3 Turn your hand over.
Step 4 Taking the part on the back of your hand nearest your fingers, tuck it under the part nearest your wrist.
Step 5 Tuck the end of the cord under and through the small loop you just made, passing from the outside of the knot toward the inside of the knot.
Step 6 Now tuck the end of the cord under the small loop where it wraps around your little finger.
Step 7 Turn your hand over. 

Tuck the end of the cord parallel to the standing part (the long part you started with and haven't used yet).

Step 8 You have completed a basic three strand turkshead. 

Remove the knot from your hand.

Step 9 As you can see, this three strand turkshead is formed with five bights. 

At this point it only has one pass. To double it, continue paralleling the cord. Tuck under where the cord went under and over where the first pass went over.

Step 10
Three stand turkshead 14K Gold In this example, I have continued paralleling a third time. 

Check out other turkshead designs. Return to the Turkshead page.

Note: Steps 4, 5 & 6 can be repeated to expand the turkshead.


Freqently Asked Questions

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Copyright 1998 Fair Winds design
Grey Chisholm
Most Recent update: 8 December 2000