Kandi has been a very important part of EDM culture for years. When I first got introduced to raving, one of the first things I was taught was how to make kandi and trade with people using the PLUR handshake. If you attend an event with the intention to meet people, trading kandi can help you make new friends. Whether you are new to the community or a veteran raver, trading kandi is special for many people. Here is a tutorial on how to make kandi bracelets, perlers, and some videos on YouTube if you want to challenge yourself and make kandi cuffs!
Photo Credit: @liyakitten
Photo Credit: @kandi_diva
Decorative Beads (could be made of wood, glass, plastic, etc)
- Take your elastic string and wrap it around your wrist to see approximately how much string you will need for one bracelet. Cut the desired amount with some extra string so that it is easy to adjust later
- Decide on a pattern that you want for your bracelet, or if you want any words on them. Some words I personally like to use for singles are “PLUR”, “rave girl”, name of the festival, or artist names.
- Put the beads through the string. Put desired letters in the middle and equal number of pony and decorative beads on both sides of the letters. A good number of beads to have on a bracelet is around 30.
- Tie the string off at the end, double knotting is recommended. Cut off excess string.
- Trade your kandi with someone at a show or festival!
Since there are many types of kandi cuffs, here are some Youtube tutorials for them that are very easy to follow!
Photo Credit: @liyakitten
Perler Beads (usually sold at craft stores)
Beads for necklace
- Pick a pattern to use for your project. A good place to look for patterns are Google and Pinterest if you are looking for anything specific. If you are wanting to turn an image into a pattern, websites such as Beadifier lets you upload your own image to create a pattern.
Lay your perler pegboard on a flat work surface. Start with the dark outline first to make sure your design fits on the board. If you have the large tub of perler beads, separating your colors before you start your project will make this process a lot easier!
Fill in the rest with your perler beads. You can either follow the pattern or be creative and use completely different colors.
Once you have all the beads laid out on the board and it’s ready to be melted, lay masking tape on top of your project. Go slow on this step (I’ve messed up many projects up rushing through this), and make sure you press down on the tape to make sure the beads are stuck to it. Use a needle and poke holes over the tape. This step is optional but highly recommended. Melting your project direct on the pegboard can warp your board over time.
- Slowly and carefully peel the edges of the tape off and flip the pegboard. For bigger projects, it’s highly recommended to flip your piece with cardboard on the other side for stability.
Lay your project on a flat surface with the taped side down and lay parchment paper on top of your perler. Plug the iron in and set it to low/medium heat and melt the beads over the parchment paper by moving the iron in slow, circular motions.
Once the beads are melted (the holes in the beads will look smaller), carefully take the tape off, flip your project and repeat step 6.
Wait for perler to cool down. Put flat, heavy objects such as books on top of it so the perler will be flat when it cools.
Poke two holes on the top of the perler, one on each side. Cut a long piece of elastic string and string it through one of the holes so the string folds in half. Put beads through both strings but make sure to leave some room at the end of it so you can tie it. Then string one side of the string through the second hole and make a knot.
- Your perler necklace is done! Take it to a rave or festival and trade it with someone you vibe with!