How To Make Rubber Band Bracelets – No Rainbow Loom

So apparently rubber-band bracelets are all the rage at our local elementary school. My nephews must have begged their mom for some and when she text’d me about it I quickly asked her to buy some packs for the girls as well. $1.99 at Michaels craft stores (Don’t ask me where, I walked around that place for an hour yesterday looking for halloween decorations and never once saw them).

The kids had been hooking and linking the rubber-bands together and it produced a gnarly looking bracelet. I remembered finger-knitting and with a quick search on youtube I found out about “fishtail” rubber band bracelets using the finger-knitting method basically. I don’t know if its technically finger-knitting, you will have to ask Anne Weil as she’s far more of a finger knitting expert then I am!

Before I could blink, BG was making her own and it was much easier then the other method of shoving the rubber-bands through one another and trying to hold it folded in half while shoving another one through, and more importantly the bracelet looks a lot better in fishtail style.


Step 1

Place a rubber band around your two fingers, but twist it in the center making a figure 8 around the fingers (it should cross in the center).

Step 2

Place a second rubber band over your two fingers DO NOT twist.

Step 3

Place a third rubber band over your two fingers DO NOT twist.

Step 4

Lift the bottom most band on one of the fingers, up and over essentially taking it off, and it will sink down in between them. Repeat on the second finger.

Repeat steps 3 and 4 until desired length.


The little kits come with little plastic jump rings. When you are finished and it is the length you want it, add two more rubber bands to the length. Then slip it off your fingers and REMOVE those two bands, this will leave loops for you to thread into the jump ring.


From what I’ve read you can create the fishtail style bracelets with the rainbow loom. I don’t have the loom and have never seen one. I was just happy to find a super low-fi solution that didn’t involved spending a ton of money.


39 Comment

  1. Not your traditional finger-knitting, but knitting with rubber bands and your fingers nonetheless!

  2. Jennifer says:

    My daughter and I tried this today and had so much fun! Thanks for the directions.

  3. Fantastic 🙂 I was worried I should have posted video. Glad the instructions made sense!

  4. Worked< loved it AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! because it worked

  5. thank you for the directions.

  6. Citlalli says:

    This helped alot. I know how to make the string bracelets too. When i bought the rubber bands, they said they were scented and the only thing it smells like is fruit loops and rubber tires.

  7. Kittycat says:

    Thanks for the get8 tips! I had to make a fishtail for someone and I was stuck. I had no loom and vaguely knew how to make it, which happened to be the wrong way. now that you’ve given me a lesson, I know how to! It’s quicker than by hand and since I don’t have the loom, I have a way now!I’m definitely gonna recommend this way to my friends who don’t have the loom. thanks again! 🙂

  8. Just wondering if know about how many bands it takes to make this type? 20, 40?

  9. I love making these!! It’s so much fun.

  10. I know how to make this, but could you make any others???????????????????
    I thought it was cool, because my friend taught me. I need to buy a complete set


  12. how many rubber bands do we need to make a fishtail?

  13. Preston says:

    Good directions

  14. Tiffany says:

    If you liked this, I would very much recommend investing in a Rainbow Loom. It does seem expensive, but if you enjoyed this craft, getting a Rainbow Loom will open you to many other opportunities in the world of craft making. The whole set is probably about $18 at Michaels but if you have a coupon from them it’ll be a whole lot less. It is a bit of a fad, but teaches great skills to kids and teens alike and keeps screen-time to a low. There are lots of patterns you can try, in various levels of skill depending on your level. You really don’t need any of the books or such that are advertised: just your loom and an internet connection, really. Although a box to organize rubber bands is a good idea. Also, the “exclusive colour” bands available aren’t stuff you’ll need. The original is definitely what you want, not another cheaper imitation because it works the best. Just a suggestion if you ever want to look into it 🙂

  15. I have 3,599 bracelets

  16. Cool

  17. I need the kit

  18. 45.

  19. Where do I get the kits?

  20. na'kyya says:

    i don’t get step 4

  21. I have found the packages of bands with the tiny connectors at craft stores such as Michael’s and other various craft shops.

  22. kaitlyn says:

    omg i get it now,THAAAAAAANNNNNKKKKS

  23. Does anyone know how to make one without the crappy ends like the double loop ones?

  24. Once I made them, I couldn’t fix them.

  25. You can put 2 bands on first and hook the 3rd and clip it with a c clip

  26. will you post more like starbersts.

  27. I Already Knew How To make it i juust wanted to see if any website did it a different way than me but thanks anyways you uys are helpful !.

  28. this was so easy now i know how to make them all of my friends at school now i can tell them i can make them to thanks so much!!!!!!!!!!

  29. Here is a link for 6000 bands (10 colors) and plenty of clips too on amazon.

  30. did everybody get these for Christmas? so much fun. I bought a whole kit with tons of bands on Ebay

  31. you need 2 looms to do some bracelets and charms.

  32. thank you so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! every time i try on the rainbow loom it comes out looking like a normal bracelet. now i have correct and easier way of making a fishtail bracelet!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 🙂

  33. Don’t know how to do the not😈😈😈

  34. Amazing. Just like finger knitting

  35. Post Brothers

    How To Make Rubber Band Bracelets – No Rainbow Loom

  36. How many bands do you need to make a fishtail baraclet for a 3 year old

  37. How many bands do you need to use to make a fishtail braclet because some people say 24 and some people say 30 so meet

  38. Thayer are easy

  39. This helped but I was wondering if there are other ways to “finger knit”,I know there is the original way, and the fishtail, but are there other ways to make a bracelet without a loom?
    I’ll have to experiment with this.

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